Finished loading, topped up the diesel, dumped cars at home & returned to Sugar 'n' Spice ready for departure tomorrow.
Fell among thieves with champers, not good for an early start on the morrow.
6.30am departure with rather murky
weather, but a decent wind from the E or NE. Needed
the radar & nav lights most for the day, as buoys
appeared at about 2 boat lengths distance. The murk was enlivened by 2
enchanting visitors, the first a very brightly coloured redstart & then a
pipit – less gaudy, but with a cheeky expression. Neither stopped long when they realised we
were going in the opposite direction, although the redstart popped down below
to check his position on the chart! Across
Chores then a midday start, to suit the tide, still fairly misty. Just the genny out until we got to Dungeness, as the wind was dead downhill, then we hoisted the main & hardened up. 15mins later we needed a reef & the wind continued to play with us as we continued down Channel, past Royal Soverign & Beachy Head, & we took reefs in & out, out & in, but with lovely fast sailing conditions. As night progressed we had to run the engine to charge the batteries, but were still sailing fast with 2 reefs.
In the early hours the tide kicked in against us, & later the wind went
light, so the iron topsail went on. We are seeing more gannets. Finally as we
Tidied boat, inflated dinghy & rowed ashore. A leisurely stroll around Braye
town, looking lovely in the sunshine, then we opted for a cheap & cheerful
meal at The Divers pub – very good beef stew on a
Another trip ashore to pay our dues, then another midday start, on the tide,
through the Swinge (under motor as wind on the
nose) past “Gannet” Rock
then full sail on to Guernsey. Gannets
heading towards their “rock” are carrying seaweed, presumably for
nests. Teatime & 20nm we tie up at a
waiting pontoon in St Peter Port. When tide made we moved into
A day off in
A prompt departure from St Peter Port & full sail, initially close hauled, then a broad reach & finally motoring as the wind went light & fluky before we picked up a mooring in Port Blanc. A very pleasant sail -52nm - & a very pleasant location. Also switch to French Time & relax in evening sunshine. Doug is delighted to see the terns again.
Left Port Blanc in virtually no wind & motored along the coast. Mid morning off Tregastel (real ‘Pink Granite’ coast) wind switched on (0-15knts) in the space of 2-3 minutes. So we sailed – for 20mins when it dropped again, & so it continued on & off until late afternoon. We were glad we were not racing, as the engine went on & off, the genny furled & unfurled & we lost count of the number of times the motoring cone went up & down! To my surprise we saw 2 puffin off Ile de Batz , but they were not sporting the summer season bright orange bills.
At about 7 in the evening we wound our way into the river at L’Aberach & picked up a mooring for the night. 61nm.
Prompt start motoring, no wind & a very wet murk. The wind stayed light & on the nose, bending round the coast with us for most of the day. Small French motor boats fishing loomed out of the mist & yachts heading the opposite way passed like ghosts. Le Four lighthouse at the start of the channel between mainland France & Ushant was heard long before we could see it. Finally the wind freed & mist cleared as we turned into the Rade de Brest & sailed for Camaret & the visitors marina, near Vauban’s Tower & the pretty little Chapelle of Notre Dame de Rocamadour. 36nm. The Captainerie was shut, but the Town & Port was busy with Sunday visitors promenading. We joined in walking the sea wall & harbour front, & peeped in the tiny Chapel to discover that it had several model sailing fishing boats hanging from its ceiling. A nice reminder of the prettiness of the town even on a dull grey day.
It rained stair rods & blew most of the night. Late morning we finally dodged the rain & celebrated with a gallette for lunch. Still dodging rain we stocked up at the supermarket & ended up eating the supplies to avoid going out in the stair rods yet again!
A repeat of yesterday wind & rain wise.
We took advantage of a bright spell to walk along the up & down Coast path, with some lovely views back over the harbour, & past spectacular rock formations & silver sand beaches. At Pen Hat dunes we were lured inland by the towers of an old manor (St Pol Roux) rising over the slope. It was fairly tumbledown & looked better from a distance, but beyond were the Menhirs of Lagatjar. A lovely find with a horseshoe of standing stones plus more. Rather less than the original 600, & surprising as they are only a stone’s throw from the centre of Camaret. More rain dodging got us back to the boat.
A repeat performance of wind & rain overnight. Then we had a day of boat & domestic chores, & Doug did an oil change as convenient to do. Out in the evening for a ‘menu’ in one of the local resturants.