|Sailing on the River Ore. Still from GoPro video|
|114.6nm Red - Day 1; yellow and lilac - Day 2; white and black - Day 3; green - Day 4|
|Tall ships, off Walton on the Naze, heading the opposite way|
|Inside the Ore, looking back towards the entrance, known as 'Shingle Street'|
|Day 1: 34.6nm; Bradwell Marina to Havergate Island, River Ore|
Winds were from the SW today, as is often the case, light in the morning and rather more testing as the day progressed. The objective was to use the lunchtime tide to reach Snape Maltings and return with the ebb. The associated video footage with this cruise shows the delightful beginning of the day as I sailed around the north end of Havergate Island to rejoin the Ore as it turns towards Orford. The river from thereon to Aldeburgh is characterised by steep mud banks and the view only really returns once the Ore becomes the Alde (never quite sure where the one stops and the other starts - the charts mark it as the Alde south of Aldeburgh whereas I tend to think of the Alde as beginning once the river turns sharply to the the SW at Aldeburgh). The winding, increasingly shallow stretch of the Alde as it progresses beyond Aldeburgh, towards Iken and Snape is a continuing delight... although, as stated, the mud bottom is never far away...
I sailed as far as Iken Church, and then motored up to Snape where I stopped for lunch and then turned round.
As ever, in such conditions, photography is relegated to 'unnecessary' status. It was only when passing Orford that the wind abated, and full sail was once more used to push me back to the point at which the day had started.
|Sunset, safe in 'Abraham's Bosum'.|
|Day 2: 28.5nm; 'Abraham's bosum to Snape Maltings (yellow).... and back (red). 90 tacks in a day...!|
The choice was whether to return south today or tomorrow. As ever, the forecast was the deciding factor and a prediction of strengthening winds for tomorrow left little doubt that today was going to be the best option for a lengthy sea passage.
In contrast to conditions experienced when entering the Ore a few days previously, Orford Haven was utterly calm today.
|Calm seas off Orford Haven as sunbeams reach through early morning cloud cover.|
A couple of Thames Barges had departed from Harwich and headed south with me. One motored and passed by, the other sailed and fell further back.
|Thames barge motor-sails by, pictured off Walton on the Naze.|
|The new public jetty at Wivenhoe. Hats off to the local council for putting this in place - it's good for visiting yachts people to be able to step ashore!|
|Day 3: 41.0nm; River Ore to River Colne (white) and sailing in River Colne (black)|
|Day 3: detail of sailing in River Colne to Wivenhoe; return to Pyefleet Channel|
|Dawn over Brightlingsea|
|Day 4: 10.5nm; Pyefleet to Bradwell|