Monthly Archives: June 2017

Back from Dartmouth

Fri 24 to Sun 25 Jun

We treated ourselves to a 3rd night as Dartmouth was getting very busy and we did not think that we would get a convenient berth if we moved on Sunday.

So we enjoyed the facilities, shopped in Dartmouth, including the statutory visit to Simon Drew’s shop.

On another day, we walked to the Froward Point NCI lookout along the coast path, however, with a combination of a closed road from a rockfall and a lady misdirecting us, we walked further and climbed a bit more than necessary! But we did have our cream tea!

Sun 25 Jun Darthaven to Dittisham

Our last visit to Dittisham was about 4 years ago, so we motored against the tide to moor alongside a tatty yacht that had been left, paying visitor’s rates. The harbour master didn’t understand it either! We caught the ferry across to Greenaway quay, but the driver assumed that we were going to the pub and had to take us across to the other side! The house and gardens have had a lot of work done to it and is much improved, however, the Trust still have serious issues with the mature trees that have outgrown themselves.

By this time, we confirmed that the fridge was not working. The compressor was running continuously (5-6 amps for 24 hours = flat battery!).

Mon 26 Jun Dittisham to The Yealm

This was the penultimate fine day, as from Thursday, the forecast West wind would make getting back very unpleasant. We gave Torbay a miss this time and set off towards Salcombe. There was plenty of wind at Dittisham but none out to sea, so our forecast fine reach disappeared into another motor, at least it was with the tide. At Prawle, we decided that we would continue to the Yealm so that it was a shorter motor back to Cargreen.

Tue 27 Jun

We’ve visited the river many times but we have never done the walk, north up the river through the woods. It was relatively short, and beginning to get much cooler, nevertheless, an enjoyable walk.

Shortaflete Creek, Up the River Yealm near the Kitley Estate

We returned to the Newton Ferriers village along another path to do the shopping and a well earned cup of tea with recent copies of Country Life, followed by a shower on our return back to the jetty. The tide had gone out much further than the Skipper thought, so he had to extricate the dinghy from the mud. (Serves him right – The Boss)

Wed 28 Jun Back Home

The rain started at about 20:00, which we had anticipated that by taking down the cockpit enclosure. We decided to take the fridge to Gavin (along with the rest of the boat) at the Yacht Haven. The rain (forecast light but quickly became moderate) with little wind made the trip a bit slow, mostly it was because we were against the tide. Gavin recharged the gas in the fridge, which we all expect to leak out again. We made our way back up to our mooring, getting really wet in the process. We were back home by 17:00 for a proper cup of tea and a pub meal at the Mary Tavy Inn.

The 2nd trip

By Sun 18 Jun, the faulty alternator was replaced by a new beast from Gavin at Mount Batten Boathouse. In addition, the water pump was leaking quite badly so I removed it (eventually) and Merv at Mt Batten replaced the seals; the old ones were quite badly corroded. Access to a nut & bolt was very tight such that the Skipper could just get a flat hand to it! (See further on for another fault!)

Earlier this month, we discover considerable condensation under our mattress, so we’ve installed some matting to allow air circulation.

Anti-Condensation Matting

We installed a “spider” type birdscarer to keep gulls and other birds off the canvas work and prevent lovely white blobs; well it works very well but the bracket was an ill-fitting plank of scrap oak. Now it a light thin piece of glass covered ply.

The New Improved Bird Scarer

Mon 19 Jun

This time we were loaded for a 2 week trip instead of 2 months, so much less stuff with perhaps one clothes wash planned. With neaps tide, we had to wait until after lunch to motor down the river to the Yacht Haven to refuel and fill up with water, besides the batteries needed a good charge following very little from the faulty alternator. The new one does seems to be working well. The weather was seriously HOT and with Easterly winds, we anchored in Cellar Bay, a peaceful retreat just outside the River Yealm south of Plymouth Sound.

Tue 21 & Wed 22 Jun

The light winds from the East precluded a fast sail, so we dawdled for three hours until the wind went beserk and after reefing the main we motored through rough seas to Salcombe! We discovered that the Volvo stern gland that should be dry underway is in fact leaking quite badly. Not sure how to repair this one while still in the water.

The next day, after a bit of shopping, we set off in our dinghy for a walk on the East Portlemouth side, however, there is nowhere to land! So we went to the ferry in Salcombe back across to East Portlemouth, and set off towards the Gara Rock, however, it was so hot (again) that we turned back early, intending to have a cream tea. All the tables were taken, the queue was >5 long so we went back and, after a shower, had dinner at the FerryBoat Inn. (Very good it was too.) This was the last hot day.

The Last Hot Day in Salcombe

Thu 23 Jun

The tides past Start Point didn’t become favourable until 15:00. But we got bored with waiting until after lunch, so we set off early and planned to be well clear of the strongest tides about 4 miles South of the point. We sailed 24 miles instead of 15, but we had a cracking good sail in the westerly winds F3 to F5 in a wobbly sea, even managing 7.2 knots at one stage. We have treated ourselves to 2 nights in the Darthaven marina so that we can fully charge to batteries on mains, wash the boat and dinghy and get free Wi-Fi to upload this blog.


There and Back

To the other reader of this blog, my apologies for the delay; as you will read, things have changed.

Sat 21 May – Tue 23 May

Well, plans change; we now have to return for family reasons. We’ve spent a day working out our plans; walked to Falmouth beach via the shipyard where you can see the collapsed crane alongside the new fleet auxiliary that is being fitted out. On our last evening, we went to the Shell Bar for a superb fish dinner – mussels for the Skipper and mackerel for the Boss.

Wed 24 May

We’re making our way back and as the forecast has changed several times since we made our plans, we decided to sit out the heavy weather in Fowey. It was a very slow motor across to Dodman Point where we hoped to sail to Fowey but that didn’t happen. The Skipper has discovered two seawater leaks in the engine: one behind the seawater pump and the other? He can’t find yet! For some reason, the alternator decided that it was going to stop charging, along with the depth gauge and the rev meter both on zero. Change of heading towards Plymouth to get the alternator fixed and the Skipper increased the revs for 5+knots and everything started to work again! We’re now in Fowey for a few days for familiar walks, a visit to R & M and later decide where next.

Thu 26 May to Sun 28 May

We were moored “under the hill” in its lee so we should remain in calmer water in the easterlies (while it stayed from that direction). We met up with R who has a flat in Fowey for coffee in Brown Sugar – and very good it was too. We bought some pasties from one of the many pasty shops and walked to Gribben Head for lunch.

The walk from Polruan East towards Lantic Bay is a favourite walk of ours, on the way we saw a Freedom coming in at some speed and only partially reefed; friends J & J on Solo! We continued with our planned walk, but had to give up the cream tea at Crumpets! We joined J & J on their boat for tea instead and planned to meet up the following day.

Fowey Looking as it Should but Before the Weather Arrived

Another View of Gribben Head

On Friday evening, as people arrived for the weekend, a boat rafted on us just as we sat down for supper. Overnight, the wind changed to more southerly, meaning that the swell was coming in and our mooring was exposed. The boat went elsewhere as our masts were getting quite close, even though they had adjusted the springs (fore & Aft mooring lines). We decided to move to Wiseman’s pool where it was very sheltered and probably would not be rafted on. It was a long trek in the dinghy to get to town to meet up with J & J for yet more coffee in Brown Sugar. The wind was forecast to change again on Sun, so one of the J & J decided to sail back to Plymouth that afternoon. It turned out to be an excellent sail!

Sunday was forecast to be cloudy and rain by 2:00pm, we hoped for the best and walked to Golant for lunch, however, halfway through eating, it started to rain and we had a wet walk back. We had all our wet weather gear, so we stayed dry.

Mon 29 May

Our plans changed several times, going to Salcombe, Dartmouth, Cargreen, R.Yealm. The alternator was getting more and more unreliable, so we decided to sail to the R. Yealm and stay a couple of nights and back home. The fog had come in overnight and when we motored down to the town, it was heaving! There were 30+ boats racing in the harbour, a queue of boats waiting to get water (or breakfast & lunch) from the Town Quay. We temporarily picked up a mooring to wait for an improvement. A call over the radio from someone said that the visibility was at least a mile and a half, so we left. It appeared that all the boats sailing back to Plymouth were racing and we were soon overtaken by most of the other boats. With a quartering sea, it was rolly and the genoa was not able to pull us along without going well off course. We made it, but it was a very boring trip. The mug of tea after we had picked up the visitor’s mooring was most welcome!

Cloud pretending to be an Island off Wembury in the Murk

Tue 30 May

Our walk along the Duke’s ride was marred by haze, but it was a pleasant day. We had dinner in the Dolphin pub in Newton Ferrers, The Skipper had a burger and the Boss had an excellent veggie filo pastry. We’ll go there again!

Wed 31 May

Up early today, to catch the tide up to Cargreen. Initially it was a motor into a lumpy sea and no wind for any sail to steady us, which became a following and then a calm sea as we got to the Sound. The fog was quite thick first thing, but the R. Yealm told us it was 1.5 miles visibility. The Navy were hard at work today and it took much longer to get up the river avoiding grey ships; to add insult to injury we also had to wait for two Tamar ferries to pass!

Thank you A & D for keeping our car (not for 2 months but 2 weeks).

Now home, off to the pub for supper and back to the boat tomorrow to collect the rest of our stuff and to Plymouth to sort the alternator, possibly the water pump and new sail boots for the Boss to stop her slipping!