Thursday, 20 October 2016

..and we're out...

..particularly good this year as I was first out on the Sunday..  

Humungous moon = BIG tides..

Midday high tide, and it was 4.7mtrs so I knew I'd have to get under the bridge sharp'ish, otherwise even with the mast down I wouldn't clear under the bridge..  I think probably an hour and a half either side of HT and it would have been a no go, and as I didn't want to wait until the middle of the afternoon I had to get some skates on...

Got to the club about 9'ish, not enough water yet, cup of tea, made myself known to the lift team, noted very few other skippers around and a yard almost full of boats already, watched them trying to start the tractor (and without that I'd be staying put as it powers the hoist and does the towing..) until in the end they got round the burnt out relay by bridging a connection with a screw driver...

Got a lift to Sparrow on the club runabout - engine on and fired up and I then took 5 minutes to try and remove the pick up tackle but was interrupted by the arrival of four blokes with boat hooks - time to go in....

Wind was blowing a good top end F4 as I came under the bridge, and sod's law it was directly behind as I came into the hoist at far too much speed on just about tick over...  quick blast of reverse, boat crew latched on, and I was plonked in my winter berth 5 minutes later - reckon I was all done and dusted by 1030'ish?

Nice crop of barnacles (as usual) but absolutely delighted with where I am - that's power and water in the blue bollard to the right...

Plenty of weed and slime..   but better than the year before to be honest so I would say the cheap jollop I put on the bottom was a bargain compared with the slightly more expensive jollop I put on other years!

Once Sparrow was safely chocked up, I flushed the outboard and loaded it in the car for home, put the left over fuel in the car, and then grabbed the tender to go and complete recovery of the pickup tackle.

I know a lot of people leave it out but I've always taken the view that the chain is better off in my garage than wearing out on the mooring..  I'd assumed I'd have to hacksaw it off (new shackle at the beginning of the season, but I've never known a galvanised shackle yet that hasn't seized up after anything over a week in salt water! ) so you can imagine my surprise when I actually managed to unscrew it....  all done within 10 minutes, said goodbye to the mooring until next April and loaded the car for home (by 2 - an all time record)

Post edit note: Monday evening saw me down the yard after work and connecting to said power and water with the pressure washer - barnacles removed by wallpaper scraper, weed by the aforesaid washer, followed by a damn good blast of deck and hull and by dusk (6:30!) she was done....  to all intents and purposes, with a coat of antifoul she could go back in straight away, but I have a few things to do this winter that I'm quite looking forward to....  let the maintenance begin!


  1. The joys of bilge keels! it all looks so much simpler (and safer) than a deep keel. She looks to be in a sheltered and safe place - all good for winter.

    But I am bit worried about your sailing withdrawls that will take place over the coming months, these can be severe, I lost it once in the midst of deep winter sea fever and threw about 100 baked beans cans all around the local supermarket - might I suggest a small lugsail sailing dinghy or such like to take out on those milder winter days?

    1. Alden - too damned cold,and I am first and foremost a shorts and t-shirt sailor.. I'll spend my time doing her up in little bits, and sitting in the pub, and spending some time on my other hobby/blog ( where I have in mind an English Civil War project...and when I'm not doing that, work and grandson take up the rest of the time!

  2. For some reason I thought 'War Gamer' had something to do with Video Games - doh! shows how much I know. Our son in law is an enthusiastic war gamer and has a great collection - we even paid for the importation of some war gaming models from the UK as a Christmas present for him a couple of years ago - which he meticulously painted. He (and our daughter) are now back in the UK where he is attending Cambridge University and no doubt war gaming between studies.