Home to N51.35.31 E00.48.41
Dai and Caroline make their way back from France
Friday 5 Jul 1995
1015 Clear Les Sables d'Olonne
1527 Saint Jean de Mont's bearing 020 deg - largest block of flats we've ever seen.
1625 S Cardinal (wreck) Pont d'Yeu
1945 Tied up in L' Herbaudiere (113 FF) - this is the island that isn't! A long peninsula joined to the mainland by a bridge and causeway. Watched cars circling single roundabout in clockwise and anti-clockwise directions!
Saturday 8 Jul
1015 Leave L'Herbaudiere
1520 Pointe de Croisic abeam
1630 On La Turballe Marina
1900 La Godille Restaurant 10 Rue Mal Leclerc - very good seafood & Rose
Sunday 9 Jul
0830 Frenchman insists on dropping his anchor to demonstrate his own design for release & retrieval - surprisingly it worked but we have our doubts if it would on a heaving deck.
0950 Leave marina with this Frenchman who said he was heading south but hoisted his chute and went due North!
1442 Le Pot de Fer
1615 Enter La Palaise (on Belle Ile) and tie up fore and aft on buoys
1800 Surreptitiously watch Frenchman doing water-colour. Dig out my smudges and do sketch of the overpowering citadel overlooking the harbour and then discover Frenchman looking over my shoulder.
Mon 10 Jul
Go ashore for shopping - get caught in torrential rain and thunder and dodge from door to door until we found refuge in harbourside bistro and watch ferries arriving from mainland. Lunch and dinner ashore - most places pricey - settled for moules, frites and cider Pleasant surprise - mooring 41 FF
Tuesday 11 Jul
0815 Leave Belle Ile
1245 On fore and aft mooring Port Tudy on Ile de Groix
1300 English lady married to Frenchman on next yacht recommends restaurant up the hill with ship's models in the windows.
1500 Ashore up the steps to top of cliffs where boys are jumping 30 feet in to what looked like 6 feet of water with rocks everywhere. Meet Belgian couple from Louvain area eating numerous raw carrots Linger over spectacular panorama of approximately 50 miles from Pte de Penmarc'h to Belle Ile including Benodet, Port la Foret, Concarneau, Lorient and Quiberon peninsula
1900 proceed to recommended restaurant up the hill on the left with crocheted curtains and model yachts in windows. Excellent meal with exquisite ice cream to follow. Then a 1,000-1 chance, Ann and Arthur from sister ship "Wild Thyme" from Burnham arrive in restaurant - neither knew of the other's cruise. 30 FF for mooring.
Wed 12 Jul
0920 Leave Port Tudy
1445 Arrive Concarneau. Massive ramparts huge squares and good supermarket landward side of fish market
Thurs 13 Jul
1030 Leave Concarneau. Sail up pretty Odet river under genoa for approx 5 miles through wooded banks and turn around in sight of Quimper at 1445 but struggle at 1515 to a mooring with 2.2 knots against us.
1715 Slip mooring
1815 In Sainte Marine on west bank opposite Benodet
1900 Lovely dinner 100 FF with good view. Very pricey
Friday 14 July BASTILLE DAY
0800 Go to chandler's for Gaz. Closed - in fact most of France closes on this day it seems. Meet Breton Garr who insists on helping and takes empty Gaz but leaves me 50 FF, his lighter and fag papers as surety. Returns with full bottle and insists on carrying bottle back to the marina. I asked him if he was celebrating Bastille Day and his reply was "Francais - spit spit spit spit! Breton, Breton! "
0920 Leave Odet river Very lumpy at entrance - bow and foredeck awash repeatedly - gets better further offshore.
1320 Cap Caval - very rough again
1400 French yacht with drunken crew came into close (say 40 feet) proximity which was extremely dangerous in the conditions- their idea of Brit-baiting!
1450 On mooring Audierne (St Evette) surrounded by Snipes at their Open meeting.
2100 Turn in for early start - rock and roll all night!
Sat 15 Jul
0400 Alarm call 0500 Clear West Gamelle off Audierne
0845 Bse Vielle abeam 1/2 mile
0924 Raz de Sein clear astern
1100 Arrive Morgat - one of our favourite locations especially after almost sleepless night and fireworks display. La Grange Toul Boss restaurant for good crepe, cidre and coffee 88 FF Meet Colin and Fay and have wine - Past Commodore of Civil Service YC at Plymouth. Charming couple.
Sun 16 Jul
1130 Leave Morgat
1245 Warned of submarine (and got sight of it) - alter course to north
1521 Go "inshore" route through rocks in Toulinguet channel very meticulous attention required
1600 Tie up Cameret
1715 Neighbouring British yacht blew all fuses trying to get his immersion heater to work.
1915 Excellent meal (80 Fr) excluding wine and coffee at second cafe at NE corner of inner harbour, Fish soup with croutons and cheese, Fruits de Mer, Langoustine mayonnaise, crepe Coquille St Jaques, crepe chocolat and Glace Strawberry. Pichet of rose and coffees.
Mon 17 Jul
1150 Clear Camaret - much too soon for tide - we forgot to add 1 hr to Dover HW.
1447 Platresses (and slack water) about halfway to L'Aberv'rach
1700 Le Liberater off L'Aberv'rach
1740 On mooring L'Aberv'rach near Alan & Fay
1900 Ashore for more frites again!
Tues 18 Jul
0550 Slip mooring
0632 La Liberator
0900 Le Batz and Roscoff abeam
1230 In marina Trebeurden
1330 Meet Madame Andy Capp complete with lip-stuck nicotine stained roll-your-own and an abusive line of chat
1900 Eat aboard - could not face another pink slug after our previous experience.
Wed 19 Jul
0815 Clear marina
0910 Bar all Gall headland 1051 Trip Log shows 1,000 NM 1130 Treguier river entrance 1155 Pen ar Guezec
1210 Tamean Bn Tr & Les Trois Pierres
1214 La Corne 1220 CO 904 Tigris ex Lowestoft (Contessa 32) heading to sea.
1430 Coffee and crepes in Cathedral square in sunshine. Visit Cathederal (very chilly) and see lawyers patron saint (St Yves) statue.
1500 Visit supermarket
1530 Very very hot - fix up awning and wait for lobster to thaw
Thurs 20 Jul
0900 Leave Treguier
1057 La Fument (N Cardinal)
1945 St Peter Port
2000 To Waterfront restaurant (just past Royal Channel Islands YC) Super meals of brill. sea bass, courgettes, new potatoes and chips followed by profiterolles and orange Italian and cream and 1 litre house white (very dry) and coffee £33.75
Friday 21 Jul
0430 Woken up by crash from French boat on port side. Argument- call Port Control who promised to help but did not arrive.
1139 Fog clears and leave St Peter Port
1215 Visibility down to 50-100 yards - Platte Fougere rock on 290 deg magnetic. Fog patches visibility 50 yds up to 1/2 mile plus.
1400 Approaching Swinge
1415 "I've seen the rocks" says Caroline but then visibility went down to 50 yds with Decca and GPS (agreeing - thank goodness) giving 9 Knots over the ground. First reaction was to consider how to reduce speed or even turn and stem the tide but the latter which would mean 5 knots backwards did not appeal. Decca and GPS agreed on range and bearing of waypoint but about 2-4 cables wide feels a very narrow channel. Then a motor cruiser hurtles past in the opposite direction about 2 boat lengths abeam doing 15-20 knots on the plane. Phew! So it continued for about 30 mins until we had passed our waypoint going east of north - then we turned east to clear Braye's submerged portion of the breakwater and within a few minutes suddenly saw the rocks under Fort Albert. Then we turned south towards the harbour and suddenly - clear sunshine. I think that was the longest 45 minutes of our lives.
1500 On mooring Braye harbour after putting prayer mats away.
Sat 22 Jul
0545 Leave Braye in sunshine 1000-1030 Aphrodite of Yar sitting on us. Furl jib and motor to get to windward of him.
11.23.30 SIGHT ENGLAND from 28.3 Nm from Poole Fairway Buoy
1615 Anchored Studland at original ETA. Log 59.9 Nm
Sunday 23 Jul
1000-1100 Paint watercolour of Old Harry and his pals at Studland
1250 Weigh anchor
1530 North Head buoy off New Milton
1620 In Yarmouth harbour
Monday 24 Jul
1055 Board bus with £5.95 Rover ticket - roughest trip of the holidays double decker bus along cliff road through Freshwater, Blackgang Chine to Ventnor with road subsidence - it seemed as if the bus was struggling against the driver and trying to dart off in any direction but the road and then it broke down! On replacement bus as we neared Ventnor the next battle was against mile after mile of overhanging branches being hit by the bus in rapid succession. This was followed by bad beer and poor pub lunch in Ventnor. So - on to Shanklin and Sandown - 2 coffees very weak. Very nearly run down by foreign students jumping bus queue in Newport - thence via Arreton to Yarmouth. Excellent cream tea in tiny garden near delicatessen in High Street.
1815 Thankfully return to Tess.
Tuesday 25 Jul
0900 Leave Yarmouth
1210 In Cowes marina - wind up to Force 6 now and at least 3 knot stream off Royal Yacht Squadron even 'tho only just past neaps.
1300 Lunch at Island Sailing Club very good. Liver & bacon £3.95 and home made pizza £3.95. Good real ale (including Brakespear) at £1.43 per pint. Warm welcome here as always from Ron the steward.
1405 In Charles Dickens Bookshop - Caroline finds Calahan's Learning to Race,
2000 Devon crabs dressed by Caroline - beautiful
Wed 26 Jul
Lunch at Island Sailing Club and more books
1630 Video QE II as she passes us in the Solent 1730 Good sail into Hasler Marina at Portsmouth
Thurs 27 Jul
0710 Leave Portsmouth in heavy thunder rain
0925 At Beacon in Looe Channel
1345 In Brighton marina £15 per night + £3 deposit for key
Friday 28 Jul
0735 Leave Brighton in light westerly and heavy swell
0937 Seven (or we counted eight) Sisters
1005 Beachy Head
1130 Tied up in Sovereign Marina, Eastbourne (Lock in 24 Hrs)
Saturday 29 Jul
0735 Locked out followed by 2 Belgian and 1 Dutch yacht then thick FOG 0844 N50.48.62 E00.29.13 1145 Dungeness - still fog 1210 N50.56.32 E01.03.28 1300 Engine stops dead - no warning find 15-20 foot of polypropylene trawl and plywood on propeller. Haul some aboard.
1430 With fair tide and very light breeze covering 1 knot over the land!
1530 Still in thick fog, anchor in 12 feet on top of Channel Tunnel near Shakespeare cliff. Get in dinghy and cut off a lot of trawl but still immobilised.
1600 Weigh anchor and tide still favourable for approx 1 hour whence Dover would be unattainable.
1615 Call Dover Port Control and explain situation. Continue under sail.
1640 Dover launch (Diplomat) takes us in tow and puts us on pontoon in Wellington Dock area
1650 Diving Club on holiday appear and offer assistance
1833 All fouling cleared and Club take away trawl and our gratitude and gratuity
2030 Topo Gigio's good Italian style meal - £2 taxi back to marina
Sunday 30 Jul
1120 Cleared E entrance Dover
1350 On pontoon Ramsgate
1930 Nok Chui (Thai Restaurant) closed (normally closed Monday) Harvey pub - quite good upstairs. 3 fresh herring and chocolate fudge cake were notable.
Mon 31 Jul
0610 Clear Ramsgate
0710 Rounding North Foreland
0755 E Margate
0845 Tongue Sand Towers
0905 N Edinburgh No 7 0955 Edinburgh No 1 1012 Barrow No 10 1035 SW Sunk Beacon - after touching 4 times (at Sheerness -5hrs 12mins and 15.1 feet range.) Little or no wave or swell. Chart shows 2 metres - a worthy reminder that tides are PREDICTIONS only.
1100 Barrow No7
1222 Ridge buoy
1300 Outer Crouch - water temp 75 deg F, only 65 deg in Biscay
1350 On mooring Rice & Coles No 11
1700 Wallasea Marina
Wed 2 Aug
Home to Paglesham via Royal Burnham and meeting "Buzz" Mountstephens, Bernard Law and John Ayshford (both ex AYC) and Brian Castle.
Logged 1331 Nm
No of visits 44
Total 48 days
Days in France 27
Sailing hours 267
Good Sailing - "Tess", Dai & Caroline