23rd August 1730
I’m anchored again off Brightlingsea Creek yet again. North easterly winds are forecast overnight.
‘Talisker 1’ and I are in the company of ‘Cadenza’ and Ed Gorman. Ed contacted me late in 2018 having seen some of my social media accounts of my cruise to Madeira and the Azores earlier that year. Ed then did exactly the same route in 2019 (but not with ‘Cadenza’) and told me afterwards that it was “all my fault!”
‘Cadenza’ is a very impressive Chuck Payne designed Morris 34.
We sailed the 35 miles from Orford to the Colne today downwind predominantly under main only. Ed was having trouble setting his pole to goose wing and having set mine, I did not unfurl my genoa, which enabled both boats to sail in company. It was lovely to be at sea.
I had met Ed off Boat House Point on the 18th August. With Rosie, Molly and Fred Cox as my crew aboard ‘Talisker 1’, we left the river to guide ‘Cadenza’ into the Ore.
It was lovely to give the children a glimpse of life beyond the river bar. Philip reserved a good mooring for ‘Cadenza’ close to ‘Talisker 1’.
On Saturday ‘Talisker 1’ sailed out to South West Whiting SC with Hannah Kunert, Ed and Candy.
Hannah is a very talented dinghy sailor and a terrific dinghy Instructor. She bought her first cruising boat this summer and has started a new chapter in her sailing life aboard her Coribee ‘Juggler’. Hannah is so quick to learn and it has been exciting to watch her first year on the water learning a new discipline with a little help from me, and loads from Doc and James Robbie.
Hannah wanted to take her own boat out to South West Whiting and then back in to the river (a first venture out to sea for Hannah and her Coribee), but winds were light. It was not a bad thing she crossed the river bar for the first time on ‘Talisker 1’. Hannah did most of the work. If she wants to be a cruising sailor she will be very good at it indeed. Us older ones are being reminded of the excitement we felt when we made our first tentative steps in our first cruising boats.
Hannah had asked Doc to join her for this first adventure at sea but the good Doctor was nowhere to be found. The surprise and highlight of the morning for Hannah was that Doc and ‘Tuesday’ were waiting for her at South West Whiting. Even Freddy Cox kept that secret! Both boats then returned to the river.
At the beginning of the month my Grandchildren Shiloh, Boe and Quinn visited Suffolk.
Shiloh has completed level 1 Dinghy. Both Shiloh and Boe sailed with Hannah Kunert in James Robie’s Optimist.
It was five year old Boe’s first ever sail and it would not have happened without Fred Cox’s gentle encouragement.
Having been tentative to climb in to the boat at first I was not surprised that Boe loved it. “Faster!” he cried. Hannah and her apprentice Fred were the ideal people to take Boe for his first sail and it is thanks to Fred’s kind patience and persistence that Boe sailed at all.
The Pearly Miss was out in force and Fred, now aged 10, went solo for the first time having proved he could pull start the outboard! No mean feat for a ten year old! Fred listens very well indeed.
25th August 2200
Both ‘Cadanza’ and ‘Talisker 1’ are anchored in the River Stour.
The wind backed to the north at 1700 this afternoon and will remain from the north throughout tomorrow and tomorrow night. I’m expecting 16 to 28 knots from just west of north for our sail back to Orford tomorrow.
We did not go far yesterday! Both boats motored the short distance in to Brightlingsea Harbour, so that we could go ashore and have supper with Ed’s sister Kate.
I’m trying to get my head round Brightlingsea Harbour’s charges for visiting yachts. Titchmarsh Marina don’t charge more that Brightlingsea, and for that, you are alongside, with electricity, wi fi and water. I’m sad … as I have a special affection for Brightlingsea having been a very regular visitor for twenty years.
There is another reason too. I rarely go in to a marina these days, preferring the solitude and independence at anchor.
Today both boats sailed from Brightlingsea to the Stour. We left too early with the flood still running hard as we beat in to north easterly winds that steadily increased throughout the afternoon. Ed stayed predominantly inshore whilst I tacked along the edge of the Gunfleet Sands. It required eleven tacks to round the Naze and my hope of making it in to the Stour on one tack were dashed, when bang on the wyndy.com prediction, the wind backed north when me n ‘Talisker 1’ were approaching Pennyhole Bay at 1700. Eight tacks later and me n ‘Talisker 1’ sailed in to the Stour, where we anchored under sail, tucked close in to the shore in Erwarton Bay.
‘Cadenza’ and ‘Talisker 1’ returned to the Ore on Thursday.
It was a fairly windy day from just west of north. Both boats made it on a port tack with a short tack on starboard as we closed on the Haven buoy. Ed was trying out his blade sail. ‘Talisker 1’ sailed close hauled under double reefed main and stay sail.
The following day Hannah Kunert left the river with Joe Iliff. ‘Talisker 1’ and I accompanied ‘Juggler’ as far as Boat House Point before returning to the river.
I had a lovely afternoon at anchor off Dove Point with James R, the Cox and Davidson families.
It’s 1730 and I’m on board ‘Talisker 1’. We are on the wrong side of some high pressure. The wind is still blowing hard from the north.
Orford SC have a Sea Race tomorrow and I’m on duty. I shall go home on Tuesday.