27-Apr-2003 -- After a three weeks lasting repair stop in the port of Recife due to a
serious damage on a crankshaft pin bearing of the ship's engine we could
finally resume our voyage with chicken, turkeys and pork carcasses to
Königsberg/Kaliningrad (Russia) yesterday afternoon.
Today we visited 4S32W. The visibility was very good,
except for short tropical shower periods, being very common in this area.
E to NE of Cabo Calanhar, - the Northeastern tip of Brazil, there are
various offshore island groups, seamounts and banks. Coming from Recife and
bound for Europe the Arquipélago de Fernando de Noronha lies exactly on our
First, in the early afternoon, we approached Fernando de Noronha as close as
possible, in order to make some detailed pictures of this enchanting island.
"As close as possible" in this case means: far away enough from the
uncharted shoals which continue to be reported in this largely unsurveyed
region. One of the offlying dangers are the Espigões.
Arquipélago de Fernando de Noronha is a group of islands and rocks of
Ilha de Fernando de Noronha, the main island of the group, appears
completely mountainous from the offing and is covered with vegetation.
There are several prominent peaks. Morro do Pico is the
highest peak of the island. It attains an elevation of 327 metres (1,075 ft)
and is bare and rugged. Morro do Espinhaço is 221 metres (728 ft) high.
Between these two peaks there is an airport with a runway of a length of
about 1,8 km (abt. 6,000 ft), but it cannot be seen from the sea.
A small sandy beach is as well available in the SE of the island.
The most interesting of the offlying islets is Ilha do Frade (Brother's
Island), of which a
drawing is available on the map as well.
A conservation area has been established all around the arquipelago.
Fishing, hunting and any other action which might affect the environment are
After having taken our photos we proceeded as fast as possible to the
confluence, in order to arrive there before nightfall. An albatross accompanied us, watching carefully that we are throwing
only edible waste overboard. They like fish, but do not disdain bread,
Albatrosses are living on the Southern hemisphere only. They are the far
larger brothers of our Northern seagulls.
Arrived at the confluence, we managed to make a picture of the arquipelago through a powerful marine binocular. As the height of the
eye is of utmost importance to get pictures on such a distance, we climbed
on the signal mast and took the photo from there - 39 metres (130 ft) above
the sea level.
From a small craft with a height of the eye of only a few feet above the sea
level almost nothing would be visible on such a distance - everything would
have disappeared behind the horizon.