Sunday, 19 May 2019

River Blackwater, 18-19 May, 2019

Peaceful anchorage in Bradwell Creek
This was the Blackwater Rally which almost didn't happen.  Plans had been abandoned due to lack of interest, and then Lugger Eileen Mary became a very late participant.   So, an informal rally was resurrected.  We agreed to use anchorages rather than marinas and the resulting adventure was just as fun, and probably with even more sailing.

Eileen Mary making the most of the vespers of wind on offer.
On Saturday, we motored with the flood tide upstream, past Osea where the wind slowly worked itself into action, and then on to Heybridge.

At last, something filling the sails...

Running down to Heybridge

Looking back towards Osea Island
Once past Heybridge, we went round Northey Island, and back downstream with the now fresh ebb.  The wind picked up as I passed Goldhanger Creek, particularly with the ebb driving us on.  Winds were SE F3 and, once past Stone (where I put some Drascombe literature in the cockpits of the moored coasters Maid of Stone and Wagtail) we had a pleasant reach at speeds of up to 6 knots, up to the power station.
Winds were spicier returning back downstream with the ebb

Late afternoon, we retired to Bradwell Creek for the evening.
Evening anchorage in Bradwell Creek.
The next morning, winds were non-existent.  In somewhat gloomy drizzle, we motored across to Tollesbury - where more literature found its way into the cockpit of Drascombe Longboat (or was it Lugger?) Aaron.  Subsequently, we paid a visit to West Mersea, before returning to Bradwell and recovering boats.

David and Goliath

Sculling into position at Bradwell Marina.

Red track: Saturday 18th May, 22.2nm; White track: Sunday 19th May, 10.4nm.  Total trip length: 32.6nm

Monday, 6 May 2019

May Bank Holiday Norfolk Broads cruise, 5-6 May

Launched at Whispering Reeds boatyard

Jimbo on the River Bure

Creeping along Meadow Dyke

Jimbo rounding Pleasure Island, Hickling Broad

Rita-Mae rounding Pleasure Island, Hickling Broad

Rita-Mae on Hickling Broad

Jimbo on Hickling Broad

Overnight moorings on Womack Water, Ludham

Jimbo beating a passage along the River Bure

St Benet's Abbey, entrance gate, later converted into a mill

Mast-raising/lowering at Potter Heigham

Jimbo on Hickling Broad

Rita Mae on the River Bure

Jimbo on Hickling Broad

This cruise was intended as a re-run of last year's Lowestoft Loop rally.  However, inclement conditions on the Saturday forced a postponement by one day, and a general change of plan which didn't involve sea passages.  Hence, we launched from Hickling Broad, cruising along the River Thurne to the River Bure.
We took in St Benet's Abbey before retiring to a peaceful mooring just inside Womack Water leading to Ludham.
The following day, we returned along the Thurne, back under the bridge at Potter Heigham, once again to the peace and tranquility of Horsey Mere for lunch, and then returning to base at Hickling.
Winds were northerly F4, veering north-westerly (F3/4) on the second day.
Participating boats:
Luggers: Rita-Mae, Jimbo
Coaster: Daisy II

Day 1: red/yellow tracks (11.4nm); Day 2: white/green tracks (10.5nm).  Total trip length 21.9nm
[Note on Google track.  I'm beginning to get the hang of the new, slightly less user-friendly interface between the Garmin software and Google Earth.  It involves exporting the Garmin file, and then reimporting it into Google Earth.]