Saturday 6th August

We would be heading due east to Plymouth area, the tide stream was with us heading east 0920-1520hrs, the forecast was of northerly force4 veering east force2-3 later, pressure was set to rise, more hot and dry expected.

Elektra anchored at Polgwyn Cove

It seemed an earlier start would be a good idea, l pulled up the anchor and Vicki motored Elektra out of Polgwyn Cove at 0930hrs. Once clear of the shelter I set all the sail and stopped engine, there didn’t seem much wind at all and it wasn’t long before we were motoring again! Around 1000hrs off Fowey the wind filled in a bit and we could sail east-northeasterly towards Udder Rock. After almost an hour of slow 3kts of sailing we started motoring again along the coast north of Udder Rock, passing Polperro and then Looe Island.

Sailing towards Rame Head

After Looe Island the wind filled in again a southeast force2-3 and we were sailing. This continued all the way to Rame Head which we passed at 1415hrs, the wind angel was a little better to Draystone way point which wr passed at 1445hrs but turning north into Plymouth, now running was very uncomfortable in the moderate swell, so l rolled the genoa and started motoring.

Now to find an anchorage, Cawsand which we had used before wasn’t looking a good option with the east winds so we headed for Jenny Cliff which we hadn’t ever used but had heard was good for east winds. Once there the wind seemed more like south-southwesterly so not sheltered. Then without stopping we motored over to Barn Pool west of Drake’s Island which we found very calm, there were a few yachts at anchor already. We hadn’t used Barn Pool before but new from friends of its problems, lots of discarded metal on bottom and steep shelving banks which go from 0-28meters of depth in the same sort of distance. So we took care to find a good spot before dropping anchor at 1600hrs having logged 29nm.

Anchored at Barn Pool, Plymouth other side of the water.

Hottest July since records began

Ever since getting back from our holiday at the end of June (you remember wet and windy) here in Cornwall there has almost been no rain and hot with it. The scaremongering in the media of global warming has intensified in reasent weeks. What the media fails to report is this weather only started at the beginning of July, before then it was colder and wetter than normal.

As you possibly know, l have cut grass for a living for the last 30 plus years. And l have found out over the years, grass grows the same amount every year, only the weather determines when. Over the years we have had many dry summer’s, normally the rain comes in the end and a autumn flush of grass with it.

As my work has actually dried up, Cornwall is now very dry! And l won’t be missed from cutting any of my gardens another summer holiday is in order. How lucky am I, this doesn’t happen very often!

Anchored in Gillan Harbour

Friday 5th August was our first day of our 3rd summer holiday this season, wow! We had a forecast of northerly force4-5 with outlook for easterlys later in the week. There wasn’t any hurry to get aboard as HW was 1050hrs. I went down in the morning early to top up the fuel and water, arriving home again, we loaded up the truck with gear, stores and left home about 1100hrs. I had left the dinghy attached to the pontoon so reversed in by Sailaway building to off load and left Vicki with the stuff while l went to park the truck. We loaded up the dinghy and motored out to Elektra on her swing mooring. Elektra was bouncing about quite a bit because of the northerly wind do we dropped the mooring and motored her into Gillan Harbour a little further and dropped anchor so we could pack easier.

Heading for the Dodman Point
Anchored off Gorran Haven

We picked the anchor up again and left at 1310hrs, l pulled up the main with 2 reefs and with 1 reef in the genoa we set off across Falmouth Bay. I was tempted with more sail but know from past experience we are coming off a sheltered shore. A wise decision as it happened. What followed could only be described as the best sail of the season so far, the sea was smooth, Elektra was close on the wind heading northeast in northwesterly force 4-5. It was as much as we could do to hold her on course during the odd gusts. We were sailing against the tide stream and covered the 14nm from Gillan to the Dodman Point 2.75hrs. From the Dodman we rolled away the genoa and started motor sailing as the wind had swung around more on the nose. We dropped anchor off Gorran Haven at 1630hrs having logged 16nm. We stopped here for Fish&Chips, will l lowered the dinghy into the water Vicki ordered the food. When we had lowered and attached the motor we headed in for the beach. When we got to the shop we were a little early so went for a pint at the local pub. Got chatting to a couple on holiday from Cheshire, it was there first day as well. We said we had sailed up from the Lizard and had stopped here for their great Fish&Chips, in that case they said they would try them later in the week. After eating we were back aboard and pulling the anchor up at 1840hrs. We motored Elektra around the point and north into the  wind across Mevagissey Bay to the shelter of Polgwyn Cove where we dropped anchor for the night at 1930hrs having logged 20nm.

Anchored at Polgwyn Cove

Weekend sailing

Our local anchorages tend to be the same places all the time. Chosen over the years from many we have used to be very reliable and good holding.

After seeing the family away in the morning of Friday, we got stuff ready for going out to Elektra for the weekend, we couldn’t leave quickly because we had to wait for the tide to come back. I had left the dinghy on the pontoon over night so we only had to carry stores to dinghy.

Out on Elektra again in the evening. With the wind blowing from the west under full sail we made Channels Creek 9nm to the north in 1.5hrs, only slowing a little when losing the wind under Pendennis Point, it was a great sail. There it is well sheltered from the west.

Elektra in Channels Creek

On Saturday, l had a few jobs to do. New genoa cars to fit, l had tried this the previous weekend but found the track ends difficult to remove, asking in the week on a Facebook forum, lots of suggestions had been made, one of which was to remove the foreword stop ends. These came off easily and the job was done fairly quickly in the end.

Next was a problem with the genoa furling gear, ever since buying Elektra in 2016 the furling gear had played up from time to time. This season we had had problems more than once rolling the sail back in after use. Reading about the gear at home, l had discovered that the top bearing should be pulled to the very top of the furler, they suggested using a short piece of line from the top of the sail to the bearing. But our genoa rests on the pulpit when fully unrolled. So l pulled the sail down to check the top bearing and gave it a good going over with WD40 before pulling the sail back up as high as it would go. Then at the bottom I tighten it back down to the spool. I thought we were sheltered but playing with such a big sail it didn’t seem so sheltered! Elektra being a masthead rig the genoa is 2/3rds of her sail power. Once rolled in again, l decided that was enough for the day and l will try it another day.

The forecast said that a strong southwest was coming overnight, Channels Creek would be open to it so having found out a sailing friend was anchored at Malpas, we decided to move upriver. Arriving at Malpas we anchored near by and had a chat. Robert and Mandy envied us over for drinks later. Vicki made dinner and we went over, Vicki and l had a great evening, lots of stories with Robert and Mandy aboard their Sadler 34.

Elektra at Malpas

Robert and Mandy left in the morning but we stayed until nearer low water because we wouldn’t be able to get in back at Gillan until 2hrs after LW. What we didn’t think of was the shallows just south of Malpas. The anchor had dug in very well during the strong wind in the night, in fact so well l had to get Vicki to motor Elektra over it to break it free from the bottom. The chain and the anchor came up covered in mud, this left me with a big clean up job and a few buckets of water down the side decks. All this added time to my job and When Vicki motored Elektra over the shallows  she said the sounder showed only 0.1m at one point.

A nice northwesterly to push us home, couldn’t have planned it any better. The furling gear seemed to work a lot better but l had been on to Mylor Rigging for a quote for a new one. It was a lovely sail and we were back in Gillan packing up within 2hrs.

Sailing with Family

Elektra our Sadler 29 which was designed in the early 80s and built/sold as a 6 berth! Will there are 6 berths so all could lie down to sleep as long as they didn’t any stuff with them. Vicki and I normally as just 2 and use almost all locker space, we have as 3 a few times which works quite well. With anymore than 3, there wouldn’t be enough locker space for living aboard.

Elektra gallery

Last week some family came to stay, I had suggested a days sailing but they had other plans. So when I arrived home from work on Tuesday evening and said I had strimming tomorrow and had to cut up a tree on Thursday. Allison said “we can’t go sailing then?” I said “I thought you had other plans?” I said “that’s OK, the tree can wait, we can go sailing”

Arriving home from work on Wednesday, I told them we needed to leave home before 0930hrs. So next morning when we finally left home at 1000hrs after some hadn’t had time for breakfast, I knew the tide would be dropping away the things might not work out great. Running out of tide I quickly pushed the dinghy down to the water, there wasn’t enough water to float it off, Vicki took the trolly back up the beach and I walked the dinghy over to the end of the pontoon before climbing in. Allison and Imigen climbed in and we pushed off. There wasn,t enough water to lower the engine in completely but 20 meters away before I could, Allison said “we could have waited a bit longer, there would have been deeper water” I said “the tide is going out, that’s why we needed to leave by 9.30am!” We motored out to Elektra and they climbed aboard and I went back for Molly and Vicki. Back at the pontoon, I couldn’t get right in with the engine down. Vicki and Molly got in and I got out to drag the dinghy into deeper water. There is a depth where it’s too deep for wellies but not deep enough for the engine! I had to get in and use a oar as a punt poll to get us out into deeper water before I could lower the engine. We made it out to Elektra in the end and aboard. Vicki and I got Elektra ready to leave the mooring.

Crossing Falmouth Bay

The forecast seemed to suggest no wind but we were presently greeted a light onshore breeze from the East. Elektra goes extremely well in very light winds, it’s always very nice to keep much bigger yachts behind when sailing and today it was the turn of a modern Southerly 32 which we sailed past and kept in front of all the way to St Mawes, sailing in 6kts of wind at 3kts though the water. Our passengers didn’t seem much interested in sailing but arriving at St Mawes and dropping anchor. Vicki turned the gas on and made hot dogs for lunch which went down very nicely.

Heading back to Gillan

Then it was time to return, now close on and more wind Elektra was leaning over more and the kids asked why. We explained that this is normal, it’s called healing. I went into a bit more detail but they weren’t really interested.

Getting back on the mooring and then ashore in the dinghy the tide was now coming in again so a lot easier, l gave Allison some money to buy us all an ice cream and went back to Elektra for another load. Sitting eating ice cream later l said this was better than chainsaw work any day.

Chain!

Back when we bought Elektra in Nov 2016, she came with a CQR anchor and she needed new anchor chain. In Cobbs Quay yard was an excellant chanderlers, I was always down there getting bits as I needed them. The CQR, I was going to change, I had always liked the Bruce anchor because I had seen for myself how well they dug in, out in Scilly during 2 gales back in 2013. At the chandlers they had a anchor chart for finding out which size was needed, it suggested 8kg for our Sadler 29, the chanderlers had a shop soiled 7.5kg genuin Bruce round the back still with lables stuck on it, I said I will have it, in the end the CQR went in the yard skip!

40m of 8mm chain bought from a Plymouth based online chanderlers was delivered on a pallet to Elektra,s bow in Cobbs Quay, Poole for £180. After spending 176 nights at anchor during the last 5.5 seasons this chain had gone quite rusty which tends to make the deck rusty when in use and I thought a new chain would be a good idea.

So a trip to the chanderlers in Falmouth on Friday was planed, being holiday season I set of early before the visitors get on the roads, arriving down in Falmouth at 0845 after 16 mile drive which normally takes 40mins. First I wanted to replace my flare pack, putting my old flare pack down on the counter, I was told we don’t take them. I asked if they sell them, yes they said, I said I am not buying another pack unless you take the old ones. So the old ones went back in the pick-up and back aboard over the weekend. I asked did they have 40m of 8mm chain, they didn’t know and would have to check, it turned out they did. So I came away with the chain after loading hand over hand into the pick-up at the cost of £238. I tried another chanderler for the flares but he hadn’t renewed his storage licence because of the Covid lockdowns.

So homeward bound, left Falmouth at 0915, turned off the main Helston Falmouth road to cut though to Gweek down narrow lanes only to get jammed up! Narrow lanes only work if not too many cars and folk know how to reverse! Visitors don’t go back, we did get though in the end but, it was long time after leaving Falmouth that I got back home, 16 miles in 1.5hrs.

The next day I had a few jobs plan aboard Elektra, we wanted to move her out of Carne Creek around HW, being neap tides she would only just float. About half an hour before HW I started her engine, dropped the bow mooring and pulled her back on the stern mooring and dropped that too, put the engine in reverse to port to swing her bow to starboard to face the channel. With “0” showing under the keel on the sounder, it’s nice to see “0.2m” appear as we turn to port over the channel. Being in very shallow water tends to be where the paddle boarders and kayakers are, and they don’t tend to know where the channel is and are suprised to see a large yacht coming in their direction! Inside the narrows over the channel the depth under the keel never was more than “0.5m”, only going though the narrows did 1.2m show. We motored around to Flushing Cove and dropped anchor in shelter to do some jobs.

The anchor chain had a story of it’s own! I didn’t really think how much I would have to handle the chain to do on the water. The day before I had loaded into the pick-up hand over hand, I thought a wheel barrow would be useful to move the chain on the beach. So hand over hand from the pick-up to the wheel barrow, hand over hand from barrow into dinghy. Hand over hand on to Elektra’s foredeck, we were anchored at the time (chain made fast) so the old chain had to come out of the anchor locker on to the deck also. Then I could undo the shackle between the anchor warp and old chain and connect to the new chain, then the new chain hand over hand into the locker! Then we moved Elektra back on to her swing mooring before undoing the anchor from the old chain and connecting the new chain, you would think job done, you would be wrong! Then the old chain hand over hand into dinghy, hand over hand into barrow back on beach, hand over hand into the pick-up, hand over hand into barrow at home and finally hand over hand into shed at home, who needs a Gym membership?? Lol

I didn’t tell you about what had happened before the chain. We had anchored in Flushing Cove to get shelter from the strong SW winds. The furling gear had jammed the last time we were out and needed sorting out. We had a problem with halyard wrap and I had read in the book of notes that the top swivel berring needed to be at the top of the gear to avoid halyard wrap. The problem I had was I couldn’t unfurl the sail and I couldn’t pull the halyard up more until unfurled. Which meant I had to take off the genoa sheets and unfurl by hand around the forestay! Well we thought it would be sheltered there, didn’t seem so sheltered when I had a 330sq ft sail flapping around my head! The anchor was holding well, the chain was almost horizontal most of the time until I could furl it in a little! It took a bit of doing but we have it working again.

I was a bit sleepy that evening.

Another holiday or a long weekend?

I came home on Monday evening and said to Vicki “we could have another holiday” Vicki said “what do you mean” I said “there hasn’t been any rain since our holiday and the grass has slowed right up” “I can go from Wednesday 13th July” Vicki said “I have work to do on Wednesday” I said “thats OK, I do some maintanance on the equipment and we can go Thursday, I don’t need to be back to work until Wednesday next week”

So it was decided another holiday or was it along weekend? The forecast was saying Northerly force4 for Thursday, with strong easterly for the weekend. I first suggested sailing down around the Lizard Point and exploring west of the Lizard but as the week went by there seemed that the east wind wasn’t going to give up and we may get stuck the other side of the Lizard Point. In the end I suggested sailing NE to the Dodman and north across Mevagissey Bay to Polgwyn Cove which we like and anchor for night, Then next day as the wind vears around to the east go to Polkerris to anchor and the pub for an evening meal.

Crashing across Falmouth Bay

The tide stream wasn’t going our way until evening and with things to do in the morning couldn’t get aboard that early, it was 1600hrs when we cast off. The wind was stronger than the forecast, northerly force5 gusting 6, we were hard on the wind going in a NE direction, I had pulled 2 reefs into the main and only half of the genoa was out,we were still logging 5-6kts SOG. One disadvantage of twin keeler is the slamming which comes when hard on the wind in a swell, OK for a little while but it dose become annoying in time. We had this all the way across Falmouth Bay but once in the shelter of The Roseland the swell eased and with it the slamming. It was nice to see another yacht leaving out of Falmouth and coming our way, there didn’t seem to be any other sails around. Leaving the shelter of The Roseland across Gerrans Bay the slamming began again! I kept looking over to see how the other yacht was doing, we seemed to be going about the same sort of speed and I wasn’t enjoying it! Then the next time I looked the other yacht had turned around, we were just up to Gull Rock by this time. This was enough for me to suggest turning around also and heading for the shelter of the Precuil River, Vicki quickly agreed and we went about. Now going back into tide but on a broad reach the slamming had gone and Elektra showed no sign of slowing, if fact she was going faster 6.5-7kts. Once off the south of St Anthony Head calm arrived, I quickly went on deck and pulled the main down, started the engine and rolled the genoa, before motoring north into the wind to St Mawes and into the Precuil River. Dropping anchor just 3hrs had passed since leaving Gillan, somehow it seemed a lot longer, we had covered 15nm.

Friday and Saturday we rested, enjoying the hot sunny weather, the wind was from the east and the Precuil River is very sheltered from east wind.

The Precuil River

On Sunday we decided to go sailing again. We dont normally just go sailing to go sailing, we are normally on passage to another place. But with all this hot and sunny weather there was still wind. After motoring out of the river I set just the genoa and we set off south across Falmouth Bay towards the Manacles logging 4-5kts, hot even out at sea, it was lovely sailing again. At Manacle Buoy we turned and headed north again, slower in this direction we got back to St Anthony lighthouse about 2hrs after leaving. So we continued north up the Carrick Roads via the channel because it was spring tides and near LW. We arrived up at Turnaware Point bang on LW. I could beleve what I was seeing! A motorboat coming down river went the wrong side of Turnaware Bar Buoy and hit the bottom at the same time a big RIB going north went straight onto the bar without slowing down! At Turnaware and in Channels Creek was just full of yachts and boats, I hadn’t seen the river that busy since we started cruising in 2006-07. I didn’t like the idea of anchoring there so we turned around and motored back down the channel to charge the batteries having sailed and logged 14nm in 3hrs. We motored back into the Precuil River and anchored with only 4 other yachts after 4hrs and 20nm for the day.

Sailing south towards Manacles

We had a problem furing the genoa at Turnaware, on Monday I tried to sort it out without any luck, was thinking maybe a new gear would be the answer. This got me thinking about new sails and with time on my hands got some prices. In talking to the sailmaker who seemed to think the type of gear should be still OK now even from 2003 when it was new.

The Precuil River

On Tuesday after thundery rain we headed out of the river and back to Gillan, just motored back across the bay and up onto Carne Creek mooring because of a forecast for strong East wind on Friday. There we had brunch and washed up, getting off Elektra just before the water had gone. Back to the beach and home by midday.

Carne Creek

Well, summer has now come!

The week following our holiday was lovely, hot and dry! As Friday is “POETS” day “Push Of Early Tomorrows Saturday” we were aboard mid afternoon and cast of at 1840hrs sailing on just the genoa as I was being very lazy! We had a good line for St Anthony lighthouse and started the engine instead of tacking when we got there. Motoring from there into the Precuil River and anchoring at 2010hrs having logged 7nm.

There we stayed for the weekend soking up the sun, the bad weather of our holiday a distant memory! Shorts weather for the first time this summer.

The Precuil River anchorage

On Sunday we decided a proper sail was needed and after a lazy brunch. I lifted Elektra’s anchor at 1200hrs and Vicki motored her back out of the river. I set all the sail and stopped engine, there was a lumpy swell from the east, the wind about E force3-4, it was loverly weather for sailing, warm even on the sea, we were loving this sailing day, we headed south at about 4kts SOG and nearly to the Manacle Buoy we tacked and headed back toward the Nare Point in a NW direction, the speed slowed to about 2kts and we kept this up until the Nare when the wind seemed to die off altogether. So motored from there into Gillan having logged 10.5nm in 2.5hrs.

Sailing south towards the Manacles

A Chance of a Holiday

I like to get a holiday in before the school holidays start, late June-first week in July. But the weather had pushed my work on with no sign of time for a holiday, I decided to take a week anyway, either the 4th of 5th week of June. With strong winds forecasted for the weekend 18-19th June, I pushed the holiday plans to the following week starting 24th and continued with work though another week. On the Sunday 19th Vicki and I went out to Elektra to get her ready for our holiday, I topped up the water tank and the diesel tank, checked the engine.

Kevin and Colin’s Sadler 26s

If was a lovely sunny week, great for getting on with the work but once the weekend arrived the forecast was for strong southwesterly winds and rain! We decided to go aboard anyway and anchor in Gillan close in to Flushing Cove which has good shelter from SW winds. So on Friday we went aboard, in Flushing Cove were the 2 Sadler 26s of Kevin and Colin who we know. It’s a mini Sadler Rally!

Elektra in Flushing Cove

The next day Kevin went to Falmouth and Colin bravely sail for Fowey as there was a bit of a lull forecasted in the afternoon. But we stayed though the wind and the rain of that weekend. On the brite side when we thought of things we had forgotten, I just zoomed back to the pontoon in the dinghy and drove home to get which ever item we needed. It was nice to have some time for R&R.

On Monday 27th with the tide we planned to sail to Fowey, the tide stream was running east between 1440-2040hrs so there was no hurry to get away. So Vicki cooked a mid morning brunch and after washing up we slowly got ready to leave Gillan. I lifted and stowed the anchor while Vicki slowly motored Elektra out of Gillan, the time was 1320hrs. Which would be fine as the 1st hour was crossing Falmouth Bay which would be a cross tide. I set just the genoa for this down wind sail and stopped the engine, very quickly Elektra was showing 5-6kts SOG. In the first hour Elektra covered 6nm in the southwesterly force 4-5. The sea built up more and more with each mile we covered, it didn’t look nice looking behind! But Elektra took it all in her stride. We passed Cannis Buoy 1750hrs having logged 23nm, still sailing right in though Fowey Harbour enterance before starting the engine again. We decided to motor Elektra up river to Wiseman’s Reach for good shelter from the coming SW blow. We moored up at 1830hrs having logged 27nm. We quickly lowered the dinghy from its davits and fitted the outboard and set off down river and into town for dinner. Returning back to Elektra just before dark.

Wiseman’s Reach during a dryer holiday

The next day was a SW gale and rain so we stayed aboard and read books and mags. On Wednesday the wind easied with showers, we braved going back into town for shopping and another pub lunch.

Tha forecast for Thursday was W force2-3 incressing WNW force4-5 later with more strong winds forecasted for the weekend. We decided it would be best to head west while we still could, back to our favorite anchorage in the Precuil River. At 0700hrs we cast off and morored Elektra back down river and out of Fowey. There was a very light head wind, so we continued to motor Elektra SW towards the Dodman Point which we rounded at 0900hrs. The wind stayed light until about 1050hrs when 2 scalls and heavy rain passed over, the wind incressed to SW force5 but being nearly there continued to motor. We dropped anchor in the Precuil River at 1115hrs having logged 22.5nm. Later at HW we motored Elektra back out the river a little and anchored off “Place” which would give better shelter for the coming SW strong winds. There we stayed for the rest of our holiday before stailing back to Gillan on Sunday 3rd of July.

Elektra anchored at Place

It hadn’t been the best weather for a holiday but we had a lot of R&R which we needed after a busy spring and early summer. We had only covered 57nm in 9 days aboard!

And so the sailing season has begun

After the Sadler Rally the weekend before, it was our turn to go and have a normal weekend of sailing, R&R, then more sailing. We find we don’t have to go far to enjoy Elektra. The Falmouth area is  full of places to go in all sorts of weather. One of our favourite anchorages is up the Precuil River. Which is only a 7nm passage from our mooring in Gillan.

With a forecast of SW 5 increasing to SW 7 over Friday night The Precuil River wouldn’t be ideal and further up the Fal River would be better.

I haven’t ever been into racing dinghies or yachts and tend to be under canvased not over. With the SW forecast l set only the genoa and we exited Gillan between the Dennis Head and Car Crock. It was only partway across Helford River that the wind picked us up and we were off, logging over 5kts. Elektra sails very well indeed on just her genoa, being mast head rigged her genoa is 2/3rds her sail power and running down wind as we where her main would only take the wind from the genoa.

Two Westerly’s where rounding August Rock Buoy about 1/2nm in front of us as we came out of Gillan, they also just sailing on genoas. Sailing the 4nm across Falmouth Bay we had passed both before we got to Pendennis Point. Pendennis sheltered us from the wind for a little while before Elektra sped away again, the tide was high enough to sail over the shallows north of St Just in Roseland and Elektra rounded Turnaware Bar Buoy 1.5hrs after dropping her mooring having logged 9nm.

Electra sheltered north of Turnaware bar

We decided to anchor east of Turnaware in the shelter of the entrance of a small drying creek, as close as possible. Elektra would touch bottom here at low water but the mud bottom would make for good holding.

The wind blew in the night as forecasted but we were fine in good shelter. Next day we motored Elektra across the river to Channels Creek as the wind was forecasted to veer west or northwest. Re anchoring for Saturday night, we like Channels Creek better as Turnaware was the first place our anchor ever dragged back in 2009.

Channels Creek

On Sunday after a lazy brunch we weighted anchor again for the passage back to Gillan. This time the wind was lighter from the west and l set all sail. After motoring Elektra out of Channels Creek and south past Turnaware, the sail took over and l stopped the engine. Elektra was logging 3-4kts as we sailed south. Across Falmouth Harbour entrance a little bit more wind helped Elektra get up to 5kts. Again in the shelter of Pendennis Point Elektra slowed. Then clearing Pendennis Elektra was off at 5-6kts, some gusts pushing the speed up to 6.8kts. We were very quickly back to Gillan having covered the 9nm in 1.5hrs.

SSOA Fowey Rally

Our season hadn’t started very well at all, with April mainly East winds stopped most sailing. In May l got busy at work, so by the end of May we had only spent one weekend aboard. I was determined to get to the Sadler and Starlight Owners Association rally in Fowey over the Jubilee weekend.

With the Jubilee weekend came the problem of fitting 40hrs of work into 3 days along with wet weather which increases time needed! The week before had taken longer because of wet weather so l had to work the weekend doing some of the Jubilee weeks work. Anyway having worked 10 days nonstop we were able to get aboard during the evening of the 1st of June for the 0545hrs start the next morning.

Elektra off Fowey

Out the next morning at 0500hrs to catch the tide, l pulled up the main and dropped mooring at 0545hrs as planned and motorsailed across Falmouth Bay towards Fowey in light Northeast wind. I soon went down to get the tiller pilot to take over. Then followed a quite fast passage motorsail passage to Fowey arriving about 4hrs later having logged 23nm. In Fowey you wouldn’t have thought we were an early yacht, the pontoon was already full so we rafted to “Rockhopper” a Sadler 32. Being still quite early, Vicki cooked brunch before we rested. With a pontoon party early evening and run ashore for an evening meal, the day seemed to fly by.

The plan for the following day was a sail together to Fal River pontoon with a photo and video drone arranged for us just off Fowey, the plan was for the drone to be taken to the Dodman point for more photos later, this didn’t quite go to plan! There wasn’t much wind, ok for a few drone photos off of Fowey but very little wind to sail SW towards the Dodman Point, some got cruising chutes out but very little wind to fill them, then over the radio came the message the drone from the Dodman wasn’t going to happen. At which point we started motoring, we don’t own a chute, always opt for engine in very light winds. I had been busy with my camera, I am always looking for a good sailing photo and with all these Sadler’s around, was an ideal time.

We motored all the way to St Anthony light house where I knew there would be wind in the Carrick Roads, and there was. We then started sailing, beating north. The rest of the fleet just continuing to motor. We had a lovely sail having tacked 5 times, we were nearly to Turnaware before the engine was started again. On a chart the Carrick Roads look shallow north of St Just in Rosland, most visiting yachts stay in the marked channel but we know we can sail anywhere in the Carrick Roads except for 2hrs either side of LW on spring tides when we also need to keep to the channel.

On the first Truro River pontoon, we got ready for the next evening party. An evening of singing with music. Roast Pork and apple rolls, very nice with cheese to follow and drinks to wash it down.

The next day was wild, wet and windy from the east but the pontoon seemed very sheltered, a few yachts left, 3 to sail east, 2 of which returned having had an intersting time, the other pressed on getting into Fowey (20nm) 9hrs later! We stayed put, deciding to pay for another night on the pontoon.

The following day, time drifted on and we had to motor the 10nm back to Gillan before the tide would be to low to get into St Anthony beach. A weekend with a lot of motoring but it was great metting up with everyone.