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.

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