Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Day 83 to 86  (27 to 30/7/13)  Fowey Harbour
The 64m three masted German square rig sail-training ship Grossherzogin Elisabeth moored in the harbour on Friday. On Saturday it sailed out fully rigged giving an ear-splitting blast from its horn – an impressive sight. Sandra and Graham visited for two nights. Tomorrow weather permitting off to the River Yealm. Kittows of Fowey sell the best pasties and pork pies. The fridge is now well stocked for the next leg.

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Day 81   (25/7/13)  Falmouth Visitors Yacht Haven
Long walk around the town, provisioned and laundered. Many fine restaurants in Falmouth - chose the acclaimed ‘Samphire’ - head chef Dave Trewin.  Tempura vegetables and seafood followed by pan fried Seabass were simply outstanding.
Day 82  (26/7/13) Falmouth to Fowey  (23/1723nm)
Depart 0900, Arrive 1400.
Wind SSW F3/4 Sunny and warm. A wonderful sail in perfect conditions.
In the evening walked around picturesque Fowey. A pint of St Austell Tribute in the Fowey Yacht Club, watched the end of a race in the evening sun and back to the boat via Water Taxi.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Day 80  (24/7/13)  St Mary’s IOS to Falmouth  (64/1700nm)
Depart 1900 (23/7/13), Arrive 0900 (24/7/13).
Wind SSW F4 cloud then clear and warm.  Fantastic 12 hour moonlight sail.  Roger Tutt leaves today.

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Day 77  (21/7/13)  St Mary’s Harbour to St Agnes  (2/1634nm)
Depart  1545, Arrive 1630.
Wind E F3 Foggy and very damp.
Walked around pretty Hugh Town.  Lunch at the Atlantic Inn. Motored to St Agnes, anchored, pumped up the dinghy and rowed through the fog to the Turk’s Head for dinner.  Later in the evening the pub was entertained by two local singers and an excellent St Agnes rock band ‘Nut Rock’.
Day 78  (22/7/13)  St Agnes
Sunny and warm.
Lunch in the Turk’s Head followed by a long walk around Gugh - a profusion of beautiful wild flowers, birds and stunning views. Rowing back I spotted and photographed a beautiful purple jellyfish – about 100mm diameter.
Day 79  (23/7/13)  St Agnes to St Mary’s  (2/1636nm)
Sunny and warm. Motored to St Mary’s to refuel.  Lunch at the Atlantic Inn and back to the boat for a rest before night sailing to Falmouth at 2300. ETA Falmouth about 1000 tomorrow.

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Day 75  (19/7/13)  Padstow to St Ives Bay  (31/1587nm)
Depart 1500, Arrive 2030.
WindE F2 to 4.  Sunny. Motored and sailed last 3 hours.
Anchored in St Ives Bay.  Uncomfortable sea swell for most of  the night.
Day 76  (20/7/13)  St Ives Bay to St Mary’s (Scilly Isles)  (45/1632nm)
Depart 0600, Arrive 1230.
Wind E F4 to F6.  Sunny. Sailed goose- winged almost the entire distance.  By 1200 the 20kt wind had built a very large swell around the entrance to St Mary’s Sound making the entrance challenging.  As the harbour was full we anchored nearby amongst fifty other yachts.  The largest number seen in many years according to the Harbour Master.


Friday, 19 July 2013

Day 72 to 74  (16 to18/7/13)  Padstow Harbour
Sunny, very hot with little wind.
Known locally as Padstein owing to the fourteen food, shop and hotel establishments owned by TV chef Rick Stein.  Dinner at his Petrock Bistro of Pea and Lettuce soup followed by Hake was superb. Hired a car to see Jonathan and Harry (son and grandson) compete in the Merlin Rocket Championship in Salcombe.  Stayed in a dog friendly hotel near Salcombe.  At breakfast I was surrounded by a room full of dogs and their owners – being on my own and without a dog I felt at a distinct disadvantage.  Later met with Mike (brother in law) and Kips (wife), their children and grand children for an excellent second breakfast at their magnificent holiday let overlooking Salcombe. Roger Tutt joins tomorrow for a few days sailing.  We will leave Padstow at high water 1500 tomorrow and anchor in St Ives Bay around 2000 for an 0530 start to the Scilly Isles on Saturday.  The wind is expected to be E 20kts on Saturday.

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Day 68  (12/7/13)  Aberystwyth to Fishguard  (41/1425nm)
Depart 1400, Arrive 2045.
Wind V F2. Sunny ‘millpond’, motored and anchored near Saddle Point.
Day 69  (13/7/13)  Fishguard to Skomer to Dale (Milford Haven)  (36/1461nm)
Inflated dinghy and walked around the pretty harbour of Aber Gwaun before leaving for Skomer.
Depart 1230, Arrive 1630 Skomer and 1916 Dale.
Wind V F1. Sunny ‘millpond’ sea, motored and anchored in Skomer. Walked to the RSPB station through thousands of Puffin nests.
Motored to Dale (9nm) picked up a buoy and had dinner in the nearby Griffin Inn.
Day 70  (14/7/13)  Dale to Nayland to Dale  (23/1484nm)
Depart 1045, Arrive 1215 Nayland and 1500 Dale.
Wind W F2/4 motored to Nayland for fuel and water then sailed to Dale.  Dinner in the Griffin Inn with Neil’s friend Gareth. Neil leaves today.
Day 71  (15/7/13) Dale to Padstow  (72/1556nm)
Depart 0730, Arrive 2130.
Wind NW F1 to F4.  50m Fog for first 4 hours motored under radar.  Sailed last 4 hours. Joined by six Dolphins for about ten minutes.

Friday, 12 July 2013

Day 66  (10/7/13)  Pwllheli to Aberystwyth  (33/1384nm)
Depart 1345, Arrive 1930.
WindF3 W. Sailed and motorsailed. Hazy sun. Near mill pond conditions. Walked into town and found the place full of university students celebrating graduation day.  Aberystwyth is a fine town with a superb esplanade.
Day 67  (11/7/13) Aberystwyth Marina
Very warm and sunny.  Neil arrived by train for a three days of sailing. Off to Fishguard tomorrow.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Day 64

Day 64  (8/7/13)  Holyhead to Pwllheli  (56/1351nm)
Depart 1045, Arrive 1930.
Wind NW F2 to F4.  Hazy sun. Motored and sailed last 3 hours – a perfect evenings sail.
Millpond sea until 1600. Very warm 24oC.  Fridge beginning to fail due to slow refrigerant leak. Managed to find an Aircon engineer in Pwllheli for a regas tomorrow – the power of Yellow Pages and a good internet connection whilst on the move.  Walked into town – not very exciting.
Day 65  (9/7/13)  Pwllheli Marina
Very hot today 26oC.  Nick from Appliance Services arrives to regas the fridge.  All is now working well.  In the evening I met Doug and Joy, friends of Neil and Sally Rice for supper at the Ship Inn plus a couple of pints of excellent Haworth ‘Rascal’.  This was followed by a tour of the beautiful Penrhyn Hills and a nightcap at their superbly situated house overlooking Pwllheli and the mountains beyond.  Doug, well known in lighting circles for his magic lantern shows, is also an accomplished sax player (blues, jazz, rock and classic) played us a few tunes from his collection of nine instruments.  He even plays to the cows - they are apparently deeply attracted by the bull like low notes of his baritone sax – a sight to see next time!  Thanks to you both for a great evening. Off to Aberystwyth tomorrow where Neil Rice will be joining the boat for a few days.

Monday, 8 July 2013

Day 60 to 63

Day 60 to 63  (4 to7/7/13)  Holyhead Marina (Anglesea)
Crew John Eastwood leaves. Met up with Sandra and her friend Pam staying near Beaumaris.  Visited Red Wharf Bay and Dulas Bay. Off to Pwllheli tomorrow.

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Day 58 (2/7/13) Peel Marina.

Day 58  (2/7/13)  Peel Marina.

Peel is a historic town set in a natural harbour with an impressive ruined castle at its entrance.  Many old buildings surround the port; in the port itself were a number of decrepit half-sunk sailing and other boats. 
The day itself lived up to the forecast by having a day of strong winds and driving rain.  We looked at a number of antique shops, some with a nautical flavour.   The 2013 Good Beer Guide stood us in good stead by recommending The Creek public house [more or less on the quay], which had no fewer than 10 draught ales on tap.  Installed on a stool at the end of the bar was the ‘Pub philosopher’ claiming “Global warming is just the latest new religion, you know”.  He was engaged in conversation but was found to know little. 
Later we visited another of the recommendations, the White House Hotel, a truly traditional pub with numerous bars, hatches, and a number of traditional pub games.  In a corner of the Snug there were a group of locals speaking Manx.

Day 59  (3/7/13)  Peel to Holyhead (Anglesea)  (60/1295nm)
Depart 0700, Arrive 1700.
Wind W F4/5. Sailed.
A very good day for sailing – good beam wind and hazy sun.  There was however an unpleasant swell from the previous days gale.  Holyhead Harbour is vast and bleak but very convenient for making a passage south.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013


Day 55 (29/6/13) Port Ellen to Campbeltown (Mull of Kintyre) (46/1136nm)
Depart 0900, Arrive 1600.
Wind SW F3 to F5. Cloudy. Sailed and motorsailed. Left Port Ellen just as Chris and Jan left by ferry. On arrival in Campbeltown we spent the evening in the harbourside Black Sheep bar. Met Donna and Stuart, social worker and policeman respectively, both of whom work locally. Had a very interesting conversation about local social issues as well as the wider problem of climate change – so much so that we missed supper.
Day 56 (30/6/13) Campbeltownto Girvan (29/1165nm)
Depart 0700, Arrive 1300.
Wind SSW F5 to F7. Sailed and motorsailed.
Intended to go to Portpatrick or even Peel [Isle of Man]. However, the 30 knot gusts and heavy seas made progress very slow and unpleasant. Turned 90 degrees to port and headed to Givan. Had to wait for over an hour outside the harbour for there to be 1.3 metres of depth needed for entry. A most helpful Harbour Master, Roderick Leitch, met us at the end of the pier on his bike and, having shown us how to avoid getting grounded in the centre of the waterway, directed us to the far right against the pier itself. As we arrived at the brand new pontoon (opened June 20th), the Harbour Master again appeared. In the evening we had excellent real ale at The Roxy and very tasty haggis, neaps, tatties, with Aran mustard sauce. Were well looked after by three young ladies – Claire, Laura and Kaidi.
Day 57 (1/7/13) Girvan to Peel (Isle of Man) (70/1235nm)
Depart 0700, Arrive 2120.
Wind SW F2 to F4. Motored.
On the way to Portpatrick saw a basking shark as it swam slowly across the stern. Had to call in at Portpatrick to purchase diesel but found none available in the harbour. Spotted a dockside Fish and Chip van and had excellent fresh haddock and chips [£5 x 2]. Diane, who runs the stall, and Brian very kindly loaned us two cans and drove us to Stranraer to collect 40 litres of red diesel which we lowered over the dockside down a vertical metal ladder to the boat. We sympathise with the local fishermen who have to bring their own diesel every time they go fishing. In the harbour we saw 4 guillemots on the water. They have nests in the harbour wall – a most unusual ornithological phenomenon that has attracted ‘twitchers’. Motored to Peel and spent the night on a buoy in the outer harbour to await the tide gate opening in the morning.