Took over boat on Friday, spent Saturday “doing things”. drove to Fambridge on Sunday then jumped on a train straight back to port Solent. Pub dinner Sunday night in ” the Alec Rose. Pottered around on Monday after being lifted back In to the water, one of us(not saying who) made a right cock up of getting onto the fuel berth, filled up then exited through the lock after being blown across it and made our way to Haslar marina under motor with a short stop off at David’s boat Surabaya girl on his mooring for a quick cuppa.
Monday night saw us dining out in “the Castle Inn” just outside Haslar Marina, I have no difficulty in recommending this stopover for food, but, you need a large appetite.
Tuesday 23rd June 2015
We left Haslar at 07:00 BST and had an uneventful trip to Newhaven. Calling the harbour master on the vhf didn’t yield a response so we decided to head for the visitors pontoon, where surprisingly we were met by the harbour master who put us straight on a mooring. A quick tidy up while Bru made a procurement run to the supermarket and we headed off to The hope Inn, another highly recommended watering hole. It has to be said that Newhaven Marina has definitely seen better days, but it’s still worth the run in if in the area. Just watch out for the ferry coming out.
Motoring/Motor Sailing today 6hrs 48 minutes. Total journey time 10 hrs. 24 minutes.
Wednesday 24th June 2015
We left Newhaven aware that the ferry was leaving about an hour behind us. Clearing the harbour, we unfurled the mainsail, which immediately jammed with a crease at the top. This then involved us dallying around outside the harbour while we tried to clear it, all to no avail, although we did manage to furl it away again. Oh well, back to motor sailing with just the Genoa. A quick call to port control to make them aware that we knew the ferry was due out but would be staying out of its way was appreciated. Fortunately, we were able to get away just before the big beast came out of the channel to turn.
Onward to Rye then. Both Bru and I wanted to visit Rye harbour and had discussed the possibility during our pre trip plans, and the tides worked out absolutely perfectly for us to spend two days here, with a visit from Connie, a long time friend of ours from Festival days gone by. So we duly stopped off at Admiralty Wharf, paid up and ran round to Strand Quay where the tide was beginning to drop. A quick tidy up and a long chat with our visitor and we headed off to the pub just as the starboard keel hit the mud. No worry, the harbour master had told us that all the moorings were Soft mud. Like hell they were. During a smoke break from the pub Bru noticed we had a lean on, later I looked and it was more pronounced. We finished dinner and headed back, a lean of 20 degrees and a full meter away from the access ladder. We sat and discussed. The starboard keel had come down on a mud covered shingle bank, the port one however had come down on the expected soft mud. I took the decision that we were heading off the following morning and we hit the sack until the alarm went off at half four.
Motoring/Motor Sailing today 6hrs 10 minutes. Total journey time 8 hrs. 44 minutes.
Thursday 25th June 2015
Coffee, made and we motored out of Rye at 06:00 BST towards Dover, As we were so early we were able to cross the Lidd ranges before they had even woken up. Today turned out to be yet another day of motoring as there was virtually no wind at all. At one point we passed SV Chellayne who were on their non stop transit from Fambridge to Brighton at which point Bru had a brief chat with them on the VHF. Pretty uneventful journey although at one point we were joined by a small family of Porpoises, only to disappear before the cameras came out. We entered Dover harbour with permission of Port control via the western entrance and were placed on a mooring in the tidal marina for our two day stopover. A quick tidy up and sort ourselves out and we repaired to the rather excellent Cullins Yard, where food and beer were partaken of. Oh and we managed to be the last ones out too.
Motoring/Motor Sailing today 5hrs 51 minutes. Total journey time 5hrs 51 minutes.
Friday 26th June 2015
Today was a leisure day so we basically lounged around for several hours before taking a stroll into town where we visited the museum as Bru wanted to see “The Dover Boat”. I’m mighty glad i went along to as this was a very interesting exercise. We also made a visit to the ships chandlers Sharpe and Enright for no other reason than having a peruse of this wonderful emporium. later that afternoon we were to be found on board another friends boat relieving him of a large quantity of his beer stock, thanks Colin for the hospitality (and the headache).
Motoring/Motor Sailing today 0hrs 0 minutes. Total journey time 0hrs 0 minutes.
Saturday 27th June 2015
Today was to be the longest leg of the journey, leaving Dover at 07:00 hrs. via the Eastern Entrance and being almost chased out by a ferry waiting for us to clear the entrance. As soon as we cleared the entrance we hoisted the cloth and killed the engine at which point we confirmed our suspicions of how quick Pleinair could be, even when we had to much sail up. We ended up reefing both the Genoa and mainsail to regain a modicum of control. Unfortunately for us the wind dies when we rounded south foreland and it was back on with the motor for the remainder of the journey, a combination of motoring and motor sailing ensued. Today, the Whitaker channel was like a mirror and even Bru admitted that in 5 yrs. sailing in the area he had never once experienced this. I put it down to my calming influence. A virtually uneventful day again, apart from the sun being way to hot. We arrived in Fambridge, which is to be Pleinairs new home, nailed her to the pontoon and repaired to the pub for dinner. Sunday was spent fettling (and making things worse) and on Monday I took the decision to have Pleinair back out of the water and step the mast. She’s now looking rather forlorn in the yard at Fambridge.
All in all, despite the teething problems we’ve had with the on mast furling, neither of us having any experience of this system, I think we’ve had a very entertaining and amusing week. I hope my experiences with Pleinair will be as much fun.
Motoring/Motor Sailing today 9 hrs. 20 minutes. Total journey time 11 hrs. 24 minutes.