Wednesday 18th October

It seems the winter gale have arrived early, there seemed a day I could go sailing before the bad weather arrived so I grabbed a day on the water.

It had been blowing from the east overnight but was forecast to go south today, Gillan Harbour is very sheltered except from the east and Elektra was jumping about on her mooring when I got out to her, making getting aboard a job in itself. Once aboard I went about doing the jobs ready to leave, I decided to motor out and use just the genoa which would make things easier.

Out in Falmouth Bay there was quite a swell running 4-5ft high and about 15-20ft between crests, we were logging about 4kts but I thought a bit more sail would be better so raised the main with one reef in, this speeded us up to 6kts but I found the tiller pilot couldn’t cope so in the end I pulled the main down again.

Once inside the Carrick Roads it was calm and I was heading north for the Fal River, it was LW springs so I kept her to the channel, rounding Turnaware Buoy I started the engine and motored up past the King Harry Ferry up the river to where the Truro River starts, here I turn around and motored back to Turnaware and dropped anchor for lunch, nothing fancy just a Pot Noodle and a Hot Choc drink.

Picking up the anchor was interesting, normally I can clean the anchor and deck while Vicki slowly motors out but being on the bow with nobody else aboard we were soon drifting out so I put things away quicker than I would have liked and headed for the helm. Motoring around the point and south down the channel into a southerly wind and a in coming tide.

Once clear of the point I set the genoa and stopped the engine, there was another yacht tacking south as will, I know I don’t like racing but its always nice to see how well you fare against another yacht. I couldn’t understand how could I be keeping up with a 33-35ft yacht with full sail when I only had the genoa up? After a while I thought he must be doing something wrong so I studied him and in the end decided his topping lift was holding up the boom so his mainsail was flapping.

South of Mylor a ship was getting ready to leave, knowing my next tack I would be sailing across his bow I kept a good eye on him.  Before I got across his bow his port anchor was up but he still wasn’t moving only passing across his bow could I see his starboard anchor was still down, I was over the shallow water again before he got underway, I tacked again at Falmouth Docks which took me across to St Mawes Castle where I tacked again across to the Governor Buoy at which point I decided to motor out past Pendennis Pt.

Once out in Falmouth Bay, the wind from the south and the swell from the east made for a very confused sea which was difficult to make headway in, that with the daylight fading I decided to motor back to Gillan. This looks like being the last sail this season, we had logged 24nm today and 715nm over the season.




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