Tuesday, 5 May 2015

First sail of the season...

Talk about a narrow weather window...  Saturday/Sunday were a wipe out due to wind and/or rain, but a very narrow window looked possible on Monday before the gales arrived with a vengeance on Tuesday. Serendipitously, Monday was a national holiday in the UK, so having cleared the absence with the family I legged it down to the boat and slipped away for a few hours of what mate Jelly Bean Phil calls "bimbling" [clicky]

Weather started sunny, but the breeze was a little fitful until I got to the end of the Northney channel when it started to fill in from direct on the nose with 2 knots of tide against...  gah...  left the engine on and motored down to Verner (for all buoy positions, see map below), before switching off, restoring blessed peace, and bearing away slightly on a beat across Pilsey Sands ...

No specific plans but I knew the wind was forecast to go round easterly as the day went on so I decided to head up the Chichester channel, see how far I got, and use the SE'ly (when it arrived) to help me back...

Spotted this dude sunning himself on the way down - first seal of the year...
 

Just lovely to be out sailing again - no issues with boat/rigging - I'll probably put an extra couple of turns on the cap/baby stays but nothing to worry about...  put a couple of rolls into the genoa to help with the beats but the following says it all really - sunny weather, a decent breeze, and the boat was tramping...  that's East Head ahead...


Got to the channel, turned east and was really motoring.. I'd guess that it was about high tide, but there was still some legs left in it, and this time assisting, so I saw a few 6+'s as I shot past the entrance to the Prinstead Channel...

Weather was changing though and it was beginning to get a bit grey (also cold - horrors I had to actually put a jumper on, and I even had to put my shoes on!) so having passed Camber I turned and had a fantastic half beat before following my track northwards over Pilsey Sands again...  goose wing from one end of the harbour to the other, and still doing a respectable almost 4 knots....

Spotted "Mikado" on the way back (difficult to miss her really as she really 'steamed' past ) - we've seen her before [clicky] when little'un took a cracking photo of her under full spinnaker...  beautiful looking boat...  I hate to think how much she costs to upkeep, but her owner is a QC so I suspect he can afford it! More details of her here [clicky]....


...having got back to Marker though I was enjoying the sailing so much I decided to head back up the harbour for a bit of tacking practice...  as is always the way with boat owners, a bit of non-competitive "racing" then ensued with a Shrimper and another small yacht...  great fun, the Shrimper just had the legs on me, but I wasn't disgraced....



So, turned for home and goose winged to the end of the Northney channel, but then dropped the rags and motored back to the mooring for a well deserved (in my honest opinion) beer and a cigar while I watched the world go by, and the club boats returning to their moorings....  damn good day, which the following should hopefully give a flavour of...


Like a spider dipped in blue ink - it was an eventful day in terms of miles covered...   long study of the Chichester Harbour chart over the winter has reinforced my view that from Verner south I can cross Pilsey Sands anywhere - hence the track over the mud - which saves a lot of time, especially as prevailing SW'ly's blow straight up the harbour....


Log:

Distance: 14.04 miles (cumulative total in the mileage tab at the top of the page)
Wind: Force 3 gusting Force 4.. started SW, going SE by end of the afternoon.
Sail Plan: Full main and genoa, few rolls in the genoa helped on the beats - engine to get to Verner on the way out...
Speed: GPS track says the max speed was 5.7 knots (which I did under sail but I saw a couple of 6.1's/6.3's when I turned up the Chichester channel) - average speed 3.3 knots

Piccie courtesy Cambermet.co.uk

9 comments:

  1. Larvely.. what a great day for a sail. Glad to see you out n about.. Must ensure we meet up again this year. Was a blinking shame not to have had an overnighter somewhere last year.

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    1. Cheers Phil... popping out to see her this lunchtime, second day of F7's so I thought I'd check she was OK... :o)

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  2. Great stuff Steve. I was out for first sail too. Having problems uploading pics but will hopefully post something soon. Here's to some better weather.

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    1. Cheers Peter - look forward to reading how your first trip in the "new" boat went....

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  3. Good to see you sailing - looks like you have made a bimbling good start to the season.

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    1. Alden - would make a good name for a boat I reckon... :o)

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  4. Yes indeed! - Bimble - Bimbling - Bimbles - Bimbler - Bimbleful - Bimblelation - Bimbets - (I'll stop there LOL )

    There is yacht that I think is featured in one of my old Yachting World Annuals called "BRAMBLING" She was a 12 Ton Gauntlet that cruised and raced successfully on the East Coast during those far off day ( 50 - 60 years ago).

    BRAMBLING comes close to having a BIMBLING good time I think - although I have no idea what either word means!

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  5. Had my First Sail today. Not much wind but got things sorted out. Didnt see any dolphins today but loads in River Ness the other day when motoring out.

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