|To SYC and back
||First time back on the bike after the two week summer holiday.
|Down to SYC
||Down to SYC to try to do some phone line maintenance with Ian P
|SYC music evening
||Down to SYC for an music evening.
|SYC Cruisers Lunch
||Down to SYC for the yacht cruisers pre-season gathering and lunch.
|SYC cruisers lunch
||A short ride down to SYC for the yotties lunch. A strong following wind on the way back.
||Down to SYC for a chat about GDPR and the SYC website
|Down to SYC
||A ride to SYC and back in a buoyancy aid and carrying sailing wellies
||Down to SYC to do a bit of Fulmar fetting - fitting a chunky swivel to the mooring chain.
|SYC boat fettling
||Cycle ride down to SYC for some boat fettling followed by a down river dinghy cruise
|Down to SYC
||Down to SYC to help Derek put Thalmia to bed for the winter
|Bike ride to sailing club
||A bit windy for us to be sailing today (maybe F6) so a short ride down to the sailing club to watch the hardier sailors battling with the conditions.
|SYC and back
||Down to SYC for some website stuff. First solo ride on new Triban RC520 having changed the stem over to change the riding angle. Worked well.
|Lympstone and back
||Because there was no wind, Liz and decided to cycle round to Lympstone rather than go sailing.
The sea breeze kicked in of course!
Stonking chocolate and orange Salcombe ice cream in Lympstone.
|Tospham cycle ride
||Round to Topsham.with LIz. Had a drink and watched some boats. Back via SYC. Had a drink and watched some boats.
||Another attempt to turn Scooby into a salty old sea dog on the two man sit-on-top kayak.
A bit of a failure - he's getting worse not better. Going to have to sell the dog.
|Liz's first time back on the bike in a month
||Into Exeter. Was going to have coffee and Mrs Lutzys but cafe was full. Was going to book a demo paddle on an inflatable kayak but shop had a busy open day. Cam home via SYC.
|Lidls and SYC
||A trip into town with Liz to pick up some cheap tat at Lidls and then stopped for a coffee at SYC where the weather was perfect for the Kathleen/Buxton Belle Trophy races. But that did mean we were cycling back into a stiff sea breeze.
|Lympstone and SYC
||Round to Lympstone and back. Stopped for a chat with Derek H whose Fulmar was on the edge of Topsham quay waiting to go in. Back via SYC to do some boar fettling. But after some coffee and a natter the weather was so grotty I gave up after replacing one jockey wheel on the launching trolley!
||A quick sail round the estuary on an SYC race day to check that everything still works on the boat after a few months off the water.
Out with one reef as the the weather forecast had a F6 in it. Wind was a bit gusty but not to F6 (at least until after we came off the water).
|SYC boat fettling
||Down to SYC to do a little bit of boat fettling
|Topsham and back
||Round to Topsham to help Derek H put some lines back on his Fulmar.
Met up with Liz on the way back and stopped at SYC for a bit. Windy - very windy on the way back.
|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!
|Exeter and back
||Easy ride on teh way out. Wet and windy on the way back. Stopped at SYC on the way back to fix the webcam and weather PC. Weather station recording 20 knots of wind right on the nose for the remaining part of the journey home.
|Bike ride into Exeter
||A leisurely bike ride into Exeter with Liz. Liz's first time on the bike in a while. Combine that with hundreds of ISCA Academy 10 year olds vying to see which one of them could throw themselves under Liz's front wheel first, and the average speed makes more sense. Stopped at SYC on the way back.
|Darting about in light winds
||Down river and out to sea (a little bit) on Nigel's Dart. Light, and sometimes non-existent, winds suggested that venturing too far on an outgoing tide might be a problem. Interesting tacking back up the estuary against the ebb tide - couldn't do that in the Wayfarer.
|Sail on Nigels Dart 18
||A super sail out to the beach cafe, out to sea and back via the Warren.
A bit of everything in the wind - well from F2 to F4 - and lots of sun. Ideal.
GPS battery died on the way back.
|Thalmia to Topsham
||Up to Trouts at Topsham on Thalmia ready for her winter lift out.
||After a little "Scooby Wobble" in the Canadian canoe on the Fal, we wanted to get his confidence up in the kayak.
After a bit of a nervous start, he got his mojo back and even jumped onto the kayak when offered a little extra time on the water at the end of the day. Result!
|Brixham to the Exe
||Back from Brixham after the Drew Trophy.
Another day of ideal winds and we decided to scoot back to the Exe to get in on the falling tide. Some lovely downwind sailing with the cruising chute up much of the way after the Ore Stone.
As it was heading towards Springs, there was the usual Exe estuary tides against us on the way in.
Back on the mooring with time to spare - time used figuring out how to release the tender from the mooring chain - after it had managed to solidly wrap itself around the chain.
|Xmas day paddle
||Out of Cockwood Harbour and up to Starcross Yacht Club for coffee, mince pies and a game of football with Scooby. A bit muddy when we got back to Cockwood Harbour.
|Ice cream at Lympstone
||As the wind was so light to start with, we sailed across to Lympstone for a chocolate and orange ice cream - but they were out of stock! A creamy strawberry was almost as nice.
Then a few bits of decent wind as we sailed back and forth across the estuary in the Wayfarer.
|Liz's first safety boat drive
||Liz doing safety boat duty for the Squire's Cup at SYC.
No capsizes but a bit of interest right at the end when it was briefly thought that one of the Darts was unaccounted for.
|First drift of the year
||Sailed up towards the Turf and then rowed most of the way back. Not the F3 promised.
|Safety boat at SYC
||Safety boat crew for Bob J at SYC. Three races in a gentle sea breeze with not a cloud in the sky.
|Lympstone and back
||A cycle ride with Liz round to Lympstone. Stopped at Topsham and Derek gave Liz a tour of Thalmia. Stopped at SYC on the way back - the club was starting to fill up with boats ahead of tomorrow's Starcross Steamer.
The photos show the rather sad sight of the old Finnish navy motor torpedo boat - for so long moored in the canal - sunk on her moorings.
|SYC to Topsham SC
||A paddle up the Exe from SYC to Topsham Sailing Club and back. First paddle of the year - a poor do indeed!
|First dinghy sail of 2016
||Weather forecast was for F5 gusting F6 and that was about right when we got to SYC.
As this was the first dinghy cruise of the year, it was cancelled and replaced with a sail near the club.
Put lots of reefs in so the crew didn't mutiny and then banged about across the estuary and back a few times. Turned out to be a fun sail.
|Breezy day's sail
||A decent wind. Started mostly about F5 ending up more like a F4. One reef in and a great sail. Anne Knight joined us for the second half of the sail. With 3 on board, we took out the reef in the genoa. Quite a good average speed for an old Wayfarer and no tidal assistance.
|Bouncy safety boat duty
||A very wet and bouncy safety boat duty in mid April. About a force 6 on the estuary with waves of about 1 metre. Meant there was a lot of water coming over the front of the rib. Just the thing to help clear out a cold..
Forgot to turn the GPS on!
|Paddle from Cockwood Harbour to SYC
||Light winds forecast so we took Scooby for a paddle from Cockwood Harbour up to Starcross Yacht Club and back again. Watched a boat sink (again) and it is not the one in the photographs!
|Sunny summers evening sail
||A lovely summer evenings sail. Just enough wind to go down estuary against the incoming tide.
|Exe Regatta canoeing
||A paddle from Generals Lane slipway in Starcross up to the Turf. Stopped at SYC on the way back to watch some of the Exe Regatta and to let the tide get a bit stronger to help us back against the wind.
|SYC safety boat
||Safety boat crew for James B at SYC. After two weeks in Bangalore in 30 plus degrees of heat, a morning on the Exe Estuary just a few degrees above freezing was a shock to the system.
|A bit too windy
||A very brief venture on to the water but a bit too windy for us. The forecast was F5, occasionally F6. Wasn't quite that windy but mindful of the forecast we gave up. Turned out it would have been Ok with the stronger winds not coming in until later in the day. Jim Vallis Memorial Cruise.
|Up to Topsham Quay
||Putting Thalmia to bed for the winter!
Up to Trouts pontoon ready for Thalmia to be lifted out for the winter later in the week.
|SYC beach cafe sail
||We haven't been out on the Wayfarer for quite a while. That sounds bad given that it's the height of summer but a quick check shows that I've actually sailed over 490 nautical miles since our last Wayfarer trip so I haven't exactly given up sailing!
A breezy sail down to the beach cafe - we put in a reef for the way back which wasn't too cowardly as there were a couple of capsizes on the way back.
Big tides which is the main reason for the quite fast average speed.
|First paddle of 2015
||Up the Exe stuary to Topsham and under the motorway bridge.
|Lympstone and back
||Round to Lympstone on a lovely winters afternoon. Enough wind for the sailors at Starcross Yacht Club but not so much as to make the cycling unpleasant.
Photos are from Lympstone looking at SYC and from SYC looking at Lymptstone.
|March Safety Boat
||Shamefully, this is the first time we'd been on the water in 2016. A safety boat duty at SYC. Very little wind to start with but it filled in to be a nice south easterly (after half the fleet had given up due to lack of wind). First sailing photos with the new camera.
|Another day, another drift
||Bank holiday Monday promised a little more wind. There was some for about 20 minutes. Then Liz paddled us back.
|SYC safety boat crew
||At SYC to pretend to be an experienced safety boat crew for Rebecca B on her first drive of a club safety boat. Rebecca was more than fine and there were no "customers" as it was about a F3 to maybe F4.
However, just as we were picking up the race mark buoys, a request from Solent Coastguard reached us via the club (Solent had rung SYC) to go the aid of "a cruiser stuck in the mud off Topsham". So we dropped the marks back into the water and hared off to Topsham where we found a Cornish Crabber (or something similar) stuck in the mud just yards outside of the channel. The water was down to about two foot so it was hard for us to do anything and the cruiser was well aground. After about 5 minutes the real RNLI inshore boat turned up and took over (they took the folk off the Crabber after re-deploying the anchor).
|Round to Topsham
||Round to Topsham with a stop at SYC on the way back.
Lost miles by forgetting to re-start the GPS after leaving Topsham - doh!
||Second time out on our Wavesports Gemini kayak and back trainign with Rob at SYC. Ideal timing - as hopefully it will get us into good habits from the start.
We did some capsize practice. Liz was hugely brave and we did a second capsize to improve on our efforts from the first attempt. Got a lot better / easier the second time.
The decent photos are by Elaine B.
||Into Exeter with Liz to AWS Watersports looking for a sit on top kayak to complement our canadian canoe! Hot.
|Exeter and back
||First time on the bike after the gears were mended. All good.
|Exeter and back
||In to Exeter on the Marin bike. Stopped at SYC on the way back to watch Liz and Nigel on the safety boat.
About the same strength and direction wind as yesterday so it seems that the posh bike makes me about 1.5 mph faster.
|SYC safety boat
||A last minute replacement safety boat duty at Starcross Yacht Club. No boats to rescue except us when the rather nice 50HP fuel injected outboard stopped working. Towed back to shore by the other safety boat!
|Another 26 miles
||Round to Lympstone and back again. Another windy ride.
Stopped at SYC for the AGM.
|Safety boat at SYC
||Safety boat at SYC on a pleasant autumn morning. Not a lot of wind so not much work for us on the safety boat (apart from trying to figure out how to make the race marks stand upright). Some GPS data anomalies... hence max speed figures out...
|Fishing for anchors at low tide
||So in the days racing, the race mark buoy wouldnt stand up straight due to the shallow water. So we removed the weights below the race mark buoy and shortened the lines. We then carefully re-attached the weights to the anchor and slowly fed the weights and anchor back over the side of the boat. At which point we noticed we hadnt re-attached them to the race mark buoy. Whoops! A visit to the GPS marked scene at low tide about 5 hours later and the missing items were recovered. Thanks John!
|Brixham to Exe
||A light wind sail from Brixham to SYC on the Exe Estuary. Light winds but that was better than the forecast of next to no winds.
|Exe Estuary dawdle
||Not quite the F4 gusting F5 that was forecast. That and the fact we managed to get the furling line wrapped round the head sail furling drum means that we didnt go very far.
|Free sailing at SYC
||A really steady F3 to F4 wind made for some great sailing on bank holiday Monday. The sea fog cleared intermittently to even give some sun. The average moving speed of 5 knots is none to shoddy for a 30 year old beaten up Wayfarer.
|Out to the fairway buoy
||A windy sail - as expected. We went out just past the fairway buoy but as it was very gusty - 31 knots / mid force 7 - we snuck back in just before the tide got too low to return to the mooring.
|Sit on kayak - first time out
||First time out on our new sit on kayak.
|Beach cafe sail
||A lovely sail from SYC down to the Exmouth beach. Glorious sunshine and quite a strong sea breeze to start with.
|Lutzys, a puncture and the SYC AGM
||Coffees and custard cakes at Lutzys on the Quay. Then a puncture at Topsham Ferry so late to the SYC AGM. Then building a new SYC wind display page with Andy B.
|Second Wayfarer sail of the year
||A short sail in the Wayfarer. Sail somewhat shortened as replacing the forestay with a new one took longer than expected - the mousing line was shorter than the mast so we ended up with no stay or mousing line in the mast!
Light winds so we practiced some on water reefing.
|Exeter and back - quite fast
||A very fast (for me) ride out to Exeter (averaged 16.2mph - would have been faster but for the hordes of pedestrians on the last couple of miles) and a somewhat slower ride back into quite a strong head wind. Stopped briefly at SYC to watch the dinghy instructor pre-prep course.
Fastest overall average I've managed on the 20 miles "Exeter and back" ride. First time averaging over 14 mph!
|Last time on Amelie?
||Helping take Derek H's Sadler 26 up to its winter quarters in Topsham - via Trouts Boatyard pontoon.
Could be the last time on Amelie as Derek is thinking of a possible change to a Westerly Fulmar
|Back from Brixham to the Exe
||A slowish sail back from Brixham to the Exe after the Drew Trophy Race.
Wind was up and down a bit from 5 knots to 15 knots but mostly around about 8 knots.
Sailed past the practise race for the 2015 Wayfarer nationals being sailed out of Brixham Yacht Club. Only 7 boats of the water???
Managed to sail the whole way - whenever we threatened to put the motor on, the wind picked up a bit.
Very nice way to spend a Sunday afternoon listenening to Genesis and Pink Floyd on the boat cockpit speakers with the sun out.
|Safety boat for cancelled dinghy cruise
||The weather forecast was for F4 with F5 gusts and that is pretty much exactly what we got. The NW F5 gusts were too strong for a safe down river dinghy cruise so it ended up being replaced by a quick sail near the club
|Estuary sailing in the Wayfarer
||A near enough perfect spring breeze made for an ideal morning's sailing on the Exe Estuary. Maybe 12 to 14 knots of steady south to south easterly wind made for a great morning's sailing in the Wayfarer with Liz's brother Julian. Chose the right day to take off work for once!
The average speed isn't too bad but reduced a little by having to sail back up the estuary against the tides.
|Cycle ride and SYC
||A basic cycle ride to the A379 and back again with a stop at the sailing club to watch the death and destruction. Some very big gusts of wind going through led to a few capsizes.
|Sunday evening sail
||That rare occurrence - plenty of water, plenty of wind and plenty of sun. A lovely evening sail on the Exe Estuary.
|RNLI pursuit safety boat
||Safety boat for the RNLI pursuit race at SYC. With both Windguru and the Met Office Inshore forecasting F6 gusting F8, it was always going to be "interesting".
The race was abandoned after about half an hour when it was gusting about F7 - but with not too many boats on the water (and only one broken mast).
As we were heading back to the slipway, the gusts did reach F8 with so much spray being raised off the water it was hard to see ahead from the rib!
No major problems though.
There's a video here that shows some of the "action". Starts off looking quite benign but quickly shows that it was proper windy.
||The weather forecast was rubbish - no winds and heavy rain. Turned out to be a nice wind and only occasional rain.
|SYC to Pole Sands
||A canoe paddle down from SYC to the Pole Sands in company with Ellie T and Marco F (and the hound).
Strong Spring tides both ways but a sea breeze made the paddle out hard work and super easy on the way back.
Scooby enjoyed having four different people to throw the ball for him on the Pole Sands!
|Brixham to SYC
||Back from Brixham Marina to SYC via lunch at anchor in Anstey's Cove.
Playing with the cruising chute on the on the sail across Torbay.
|Beach cafe dinghy cruise
||A mid October dinghy cruise to the beach cafe. Winds of mid F4 forecast but mostly a bit lower than that.
Broke the tiller extension universal joint which made sailing back a bit different to usual.
|March safety boat
||Safety boat at SYC. A cold march day - two degrees centrigrade. The windchill factor made it feel like minus four. GPS data anomalies account for the three or four short peaks in speed.
|Plymouth Sound with SYC
||With SYC on Plymouth Sound out of Mount Batten Sailing Centre. A bit windy for Liz on the Saturday so we went out on the safety boat taking piccies. GPS still on when we landed and went to the cafe - whoops. Sunday was a F7 blow out.
|First beach cafe sail of the year
||From SYC down to the beach cafe and back. The forecast said next to no wind but a lovely sea breeze kicked in.
|Starcross Steamer 2017
||Down to Starcross Yacht Club for the annual Starcross Steamer dinghy pursuit race. One hundred boats on the water.
|A tale of two ferries
||Up to buoy 45 at Topsham (off the Goat Walk) passing the Topsham to Turf ferry and then down to Starcross (to the Starcross to Exmouth ferry pier). Then round the floating cafe and back to SYC.
A gorgeous day's sailing. A strong F3 up near Topsham and one of those rare days that it was warm enough to sail without a spray top. Marvelous.
|Wednesday evening safety boat duty
||A Wednesday evening on the Exe Estuary crewing for Bob J on safety boat
|Pole Sands picnic
||Sail down from SYC to the Pole Sands. A bit of everything wind wise. From nothing to about a F4 and quite a lot of gusts in between, Put first reef in for the trip back which made things easier
|SYC Newport trophy to Dartmouth
||Absolutely no wind to start with - took 1/2 an hour to cross the start line at 10:40. Wind then filled in a bit making the sail from Torbay onwards a bit quicker. Some small waves past Berry Head also slowed things a little. Peter S sailed a storming race in his Sadler 26 and was first by miles on handicap (and very nearly first overall). We came a slightly surprising 2nd on handicap. Very pleasant meal in the Red Lion in Dittisham
|Starcross Steamer 2015
||First cycle ride in ages. To SYC and back again for a brief watch of the Starcross Steamer pursuit dinghy race.
|Cockwood to the Turf and back
||From Cockwood Harbour to SYC and then on to the Turf, Then back again via Bull Hill Bank so Scooby could have a bit of a run about.
||Strawberries and cream on the Warren
|Safety boat for Hurricane and Dart open meeting
||A lovely morning / afternoon on the water doing safety boat duty for the Dart and Hurricane Open Meeting at SYC. Plenty of sun and wind.
|SYC Dinghy Cruise
||SYC dinghy cruise down to the beach cafe.
Slightly stronger winds than forecast - about F4 much of the time - and a big 4.4 metre tide resulted in a top speed of 9.4 knots. Not bad for a 40 year old Wayfarer but we still haven't broken the 10 knots barrier yet!
Unfortunately the battery in the GPS ran out half way back.
|Dinghy Cruise OOD and safety boat
||"Officer of the day" and safety boat driver for a down river dinghy cruise from SYC.
The slightly dodgy forecast ended up being fine and a good sail was had by all.
|SYC dinghy cruise
||First down river dinghy cruise of the 2018 SYC programme.
Next to no wind most of the time but a pleasant drift in bigish tides.
Beach cafe toasties as good as usual.
|Canoe training at SYC
||An excellent days canoe training from Rob McInally at SYC. Even had Liz jump out of the canoe as part of some capsize training. Thoroughly recommended.
|Drew Trophy race to Brixham
||A sail from the Exe to Brixham in Derek's Sadler 26. The annual SYC Drew Trophy race and we did quite well. We were the first mono hull over the line by quite some way but 2nd overall on handicap. Helped greatly by the pointing ability of Derek's Sadler and its ability to sail with full sails up in a F5 (albeit on its ear a bit at times!).
Top sailing with the sun putting in a decent appearance. Met up with the Topsham Sailing Club rally and then dinner at Brixham Yacht Club.
Average speed pretty good considering the wind was just about on the nose and there was some "wave action" stopping the boat.
|Beach cafe sail
||Wind forecast was for a F4 gusting F5 and, after a slow start, that's what we got. Stopped half way down to put in one reef. Top choccie ice cream at the Beach Cafe. With the wind well behind us on the way back, put two reefs in the main and had full headsail on the way back. Still went quite fast on the way back.
The top speed of 9.8 knots - in a Wayfarer - is a clue to the size of the tides.
|Brixham to Exe
||A cracking sail back from Brixham to the Exe. From Brixham, we went to Anstey's Cove for lunch as did many other SYC boats. After lunch there was a cracking sail back across the bay to the Exe - winds ranging from 10 knots to about 18 knots Excellent sailing.