||Round to Topsham to help Derek H with putting bits and pieces back on his Westerley Fulmar.
|SYC boat fettling
||Down to SYC to do a little bit of boat fettling
||The CHase Around the Ore Stone race.
A great day's sailing. The weather forecast was fairly strong (F4 to F5 with occasional F6) and that was about right. No real sudden gusts so the winds of up to about 22 knots were fine and fun.
Unfortunately I didnt help Derek to quite the heights in the results table that he managed last year with the commodore as a more competent crew!
It was still a fast sail - fast enough that we had to potter around off the fairway buoy for a couple of hours waiting for enough tide to go back up the Exe.
Then back to Starcross Yacht Club to arrive by sea for the inaugural Starstock mini festival.
|Exmouth Marina to SYC
||Bringing Derek's Fulmar back to SYC from Exmouth Marina.
|Thalmia moored at SYC
||Helping Derek put Thalmia on her mooring at SYC for the first time. In fact, when I missed getting the pick up on to the cleat, we proved that Derek can moor her OK single handed anyway!
|Man overboard practise
||Out to sea off Dawlish Warren to practice man overboard drill. The MOB (a pick up buoy with some chain attached) survived!
|First Fulmar Outing
||Some fettling on Derek H's boat (re-attaching reefing lines etc) and then a quick outing along the Topsham part of the River Exe. Upwind under main and downwind under genoa. Lovely boat.
|Straight Point and Exmouth Docks
||A sail on Derek's Fulmar down the estuary and then along to Straight Point (the Royal Marines weren't firing at the time). Sailed back alongside Julian's Halmatic 30 - the boats are nicely matched for speed. Then into Exmouth Marina whch was interesting. I'd not been into Exmouth Marina before in anything bigger than a RIB so going in under the lifting bridge in a 30 foot yacht was interesting.
|SYC to Brixham
||Down from SYC on the Exe to Brixham ahead of the channel crossing to St Peter Port on Guernsey.
|Exe to Dartmouth
||The plan was to go to Salcombe. However, the weather forecast was out and there was little wind to start with. That and some shennanigans with the cruising chute - that included giving it a wash in the sea - meant we were later than planned heading towards Start Point. Again the forecast was out as we now had 20 knots of wind that would have been against the (admittedly) neap tides after we rounded Start. So we gave up bouncing into waves and headed into Dartmouth / Darthaven for the evening.
|Poole to Weymouth
||Sailing Derek H's new boat back towards the Exe. Stage 2 of the journey from Poole to Weymouth. The boat is a rather nice Westerley Fulmar.
Fairly large tides so we took the offshore route around the overfalls at St Albans Head.
|Salcombe to the Exe
||A great sail back from Salcombe to the Exe.
Left the mooring in Salcombe and said goodbye to Simon T and Andy B leaving them to their Round Britain sail.
Out over Salcombe Bar in thick fog. Experimented a bit further with the now fully working radar in Derek H's Fulmar and then headed off for the inshore passage around Start Point. Like the day before, wind was with tide so Start Point was fine and the fog mostly lifted as we reached Start Point.
Then along past Berry head and into Torbay for some "man overboard" practise.Think I proved that I'd be able to get back to pick Derek up if he went overboard but without the practise I'd have probably run him over!
Then up to the Exe waiting for the tide to change to allow a safe return to the mooring.
Excellent weekend all round.
|St Peter Port to SYC
||A very fast sail back from St Peter Port, Guernsey to SYC on the Exe. For most of the way the wind was quite strong - maybe a force 5 - but was on the port rear quarter. This meant that most of the sail was done with just a small amount of reefing and lots of sailing down the following waves. Long and tiring - but fun! The speed meant that we were unexpectedly back at the Exe before low water so we were able to sneak in and be back on the mooring at SYC just before it got dark.
|Exe to Salcombe
||A great sail from the Exe down to Salcombe.
Sailed past Simon T and Andy B on Nelly Nui as they prepared for their Round Britain sail.
Met up with them again off Dartmouth and we sailed on together towards Start Point.
We took the inside passage around Start Point and encountered a really heavy rain shower including some very loud and rather too close for comfort thunder and lightening.
After that it was a beautiful evening sailing across Salcombe Bar and onto a mooring followed by a fine dinner ashore.
|Brixham to Exe
||A lovely day sail on Derek H's Fulmar.
First a quick trip with Liz on board round Berry Head. Mostly motor sailing and watching the wildlife.
Then, after dropping Liz off back in Brixham, a sail back up to SYC on the Exe. Light winds - but enough to sail most of the way. A chance to "play" with some of setup on Thalmia including the cruising chute and a think about how a preventer might be rigged.
|Brixham to St Peter Port
||After a delay of 12 hours waiting for the weather to improve a little, we set off at lunchtime for the channel crossing to St Peter Port. The wind was a fair bit stronger than forecast making the first part of the journey much harder work than expected. A decision was reached (as the wind started to ease a little) not to abandon and return to Brixham. This turned out to be a good call as the wind continued to drop. The TSS crossing at night - with no moon - was eerie. We had to stop at one point to allow about 5 boats to pass ahead while allowing one to pass behind. The completely dark night (no moon) made this TSS crossing very different to previous night crossings. Also the tide was very strong - as can be seen from most of the track across the TSS where we end up being taken down much of the TSS while still maintaining a boat aspect at right angles to the traffic!. The last part of the crossing was under motor arriving at St Peter Port just at first light (with an easy trip down the Little Russel).
|Weymouth to Topsham
||From Weymouth round Portland Bill to Topsham at the top of the Exe.
Stage three in bringing Derek H's new Fulmar back to the Exe.
With very big Spring tides, we took the offshore route around the East Shambles buoy and a few miles off Portland Bill.
With the wind pretty much on the nose after we turned west, we motored most of the way back from Portland Bill.
With the wind varying between 12 and 20 knots against us and 1 or 2 knots of tide with us, the first half of the journey back to the Exe (after Portland Bill) was a little bouncy at times.
We reached the Exe just as it got dark - the trip back up the Exe in the dark and with big tides was interesting! With the Exe's mix of lit and unlit buoys and moorings encroaching on the channel, I really wouldn't recommend going up the Exe at night without local knowledge!
|St Peter Port to St Helier
||A lovely sail from St Peter Port on Guernsey across to St Helier on Jersey. Ideal winds and weather.
|Ile de Brehat to St Peter Port
||After getting up an hour too early (confusing French and English first light times!!!), we sailed from Ile de Brehat for St Peter Port on Guernsey. The sail around the north east corner of the Ile de Brehat was notable for two things. First, we hit some fairly strong overfalls. It was neaps and a middling wind so we weren't expecting much. Given how lumpy it was, this is one to avoid at Springs. Secondly, Peter S caught a bunch of weed and plastic around his prop while going through the overfalls. Peter was able to sail on OK and got enough motor back to be able to motor into St Peter Port later. The rest of the sail was lovely - under cruising chute for a large part of the journey.
|St Quay to Ile De Brehat
||Up from St Quay-Portreaux to Ile de Brehat. The Ile de Brehat is a small island on a rocky shore. Somewhat similar to Sark (no cars and a very small population like Sark but no cliffs).
|St Helier to St Quay Portrieux
||After a light wind start, a lovely sail down from St Helier, Jersey to St Quay Portrieux on the Brittany coast. Sailed under cruising chute for most of the way. St Quay has the huge advantage of being an "all tide" port (i.e. no need to wait for there to be enough water over a marina cill).