|Down to SYC
||Down to SYC to try to do some phone line maintenance with Ian P
||Down to SYC for a chat about GDPR and the SYC website
|SYC cruisers lunch
||A short ride down to SYC for the yotties lunch. A strong following wind on the way back.
||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
|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.
|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.
|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!
|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.
|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.
|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!
|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.
|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.
|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.
|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.
|Another day, another drift
||Bank holiday Monday promised a little more wind. There was some for about 20 minutes. Then Liz paddled us back.
|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.
|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.
|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 <a href="https://player.vimeo.com/video/243418606" target="_blank">here</a> 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.
|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.
|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.
|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.
|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 <a href="http://www.starcrossyc.org.uk/weather-details/wind-at-syc" target="_blank">wind display</a> 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.
|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.
|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.
|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.
|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.
|Safety boat at SYC
||Too windy for us to go out sailing as we havent been out for a couple of months. So ended up doing safety boat. Good fun - a little bouncy. Suspect the occasional max speed peaks are GPS data anomalies.
|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 safety boat
||Safety boat for free sailing day at SYC
|First SYC dinghy cruise of 2015
||An upriver dinghy cruise to start the 2015 season of SYC organised dinghy cruises. Pleasant wind - maybe F3
|Cycle Ride to sailing club
||Shared commiserations for cancelled dinghy cruise
|Beach cafe sail
||SYC dinghy cruise to the beach cafe. Great winds and plenty of sun!
Heading towards Springs so plenty of tide so quite a fast speed over the ground going past the Warren.
|Lympstone and back
||Round to Lympstone and back again. Choccie bar near Lympstone Sailing Club, said 'hello' to Graham A at Topsham Sailing Club (who was putting Celtic Breeze to bed for the winter) and then round to Starcross Sailing Club for a coffee and a look at the Topper Open Meeting. A bit slow as Liz had some aches and pains and the wind was starting to get up.
|Exeter and back
||Cycle ride into Exeter and back with a stop at SYC on the way back.
Not a bad average for me as I was on the Marin hybrid loaded up with a pannier, locks and a book.
|Beach cafe sail
||Down from SYC to the beach cafe at Exmouth. Two very different forecasts - this time the Met Office was right and it was F4 with gusts to the top of F5. Wind was from the NNW so an easy sail with a couple of gybes on the way down. A lot of tacking on the way back but a really great sail for the Wayfarer with one reef in.
A max speed of 9.5 knots isnt bad for an old Wayfarer - OK there might have been a little tidal assist at that point! One day, we'll make 10 knots.
|Up river dinghy cruise
||An up river dinghy cruise. The weather forecast was about right with its F4 gusting F5.
The "fleet" got spread out quite a bit and, as the weather wasn't great, we headed back to the club quite early.
The camera was on the wrong settings when the photos were taken so they've been over HDR'd to see if they can be made slightly interesting.
|First beach cafe sail of 2016
||First SYC sail to the Exmouth beach cafe in 2016.
The forecast was north easterly F4 to F5. However, on the way back from the beach cafe it was really quite gusty and I'd guess that the gusts might just have been F6. Combined with a fairly large tide and the NE wind being against the tide, it made for an interesting sail back.
|Safety boat at Laser Open meeting
||Safety boat with Bob J at the Laser Open meeting at SYC.
The day started flat calm so we tied up to a buoy and listened to England retain the Ashes.
A sea breeze started about 12:15 and the sailing started shortly after that. Four back to back races. We spent all our time at the leeward mark - hence the "ball of wool" GPS track. All in all, a very pleasant way to idle away a sunny August Saturday.
|Autumn beach cafe sail
||An autumn sail down to the beach cafe. The sun put in an appearance and there was occasionally a bit of wind to use in the big springs tide
|Super summer sail
||A lovely sail up to the Goat Walk at Topsham. We had planned to go as far as the motorway bridge but the wind didnt have the west in it that the forecast said it would. Met Malcolm and Graham at the Goat Walk. The max speed of 6.9 knots isnt bad given that there was no tide to speak of.
|Up river sail
||First time out on the Wayfarer for quite some time.
The wind didn't manage the promised F3 / F4 and we ran out of wind trying to get past Topsham.
A seal popped its head out the water about 10 yards away from us and watched us sail by the Turf. Liz would have taken a photo but was too preoccupied trying to retrieve the Double Decker she'd dropped down the centre board casing.
Pleasant sail/drift in the autumn sun.
|Dartmouth race 2016
||A sail to Dartmouth in Derek H's Sadler 26. The wind was in all directions including not there at all. The "dog leg" at Torbay was us searching for wind that wasn't there! Moored up for the night at Dittisham on the Dart.
|Squires Cup Safety Boat
||Safety boat for the Squires Cup racing for dinghies and cats on the Exe Estuary. Not a lot of wind so not much call for our services. Some rain at times.
|October dinghy cruise
||An iffy weather forecast (F4 gusting F5 with occasional F6) didn't tie up with the conditions at the start time so we went out with one reef. In the end, it turned out to be a lovely sail.
|Exe to Dartmouth
||With the SYC Newport Trophy cancelled due to the possibility of a Force 6, we set of with Peter S for company hoping to get as far as Salcombe.
However, with the wind pretty much on the nose, progress was a little slow for us so we motor sailed.
As we crossed Torbay we saw the annual Brixham Trawler Race taking place.
The weather forecast was pretty much right (with maximum gusts of about 26 knots - F6), so we gave up on the idea of rounding Start Point and ducked into Darthaven Marina in Dartmouth.
|Safety boat at SYC
||Safety boat for SYC dinghy cruise. Nearly an out to sea cruise but it was a little lumpy just out towards the fairway buoy.
|Exmouth and back
||Round to Exmouth and back to meet up with the SYC dinghy cruisers at the Beach Cafe. Temperature was between one and two degrees with flurries of snow.
|Jim Vallis Cruise
||The first Jim Vallis Memorial Cruise. A dinghy cruise in memory of our friend Jim Vallis who started up the organised dinghy cruises at SYC. A lovely sunny day with the wind varying between nothing and about force 5 - but with no big gusts so very sailable. Joined at SYC by many from Jim's family and Sandra joined us on our Wayfarer for a sail.
|Bike ride to the Double Locks
||A bike ride along the Exe Estuary and canal to meet up with Rose and Midge for the first time in ages.
Wobbled back along the cycle path and stopped at SYC for a quick view of the 2nd day of the Exe Regatta.
||First sail of the year on Nigel H's Dart 18. Wind was up and down and we fought the tide on the way back to SYC but some fast speeds out at sea.
|Exe estuary to Brixham
||A sail down from SYC on the Exe Estuary to Brixham ready for an early morning start across to the Channel Islands.
The ship shown in the photos (the THV Patricia) was doing buoy maintenance on the buoys marking the wreck of the MV Emsstrom off Torbay. Wierdly, we saw the same ship come in after us to anchor off Dixcart Bay at Sark two days later.
|SYC trip to the beach cafe - by bike
||A first SYC organised cycle ride. From SYC on the west back round to the beach cafe at Exmouth on the east bank. Ten participants.
|Out to sea dinghy cruise
||An SYC dinghy cruise out to sea that actually made it out to sea! It looked as though there would be no wind at all for quite a while but gentle F2 / F3 filled in for most of the time.
|CI & France 2015 - Sail down to Brixham
||A sail from Starcross down to Brixham ready for an early morning channel crossing to St Peter Port - Guernsey. Wind went from near enough becalmed to a F5 in about 15 minutes. Made for an exciting sail across Torbay
|October beach cafe sail
||Good winds and big tides for a late season sail from SYC down to the beach cafe. Some excellent winds round the Warren and the Docks. Died away a little bit for the last mile back to SYC.