La Corunna to Plymouth
20 October 2009
Jon duly arrived, and we set off on Sunday 11th around 10.30am for the big hop across Biscay. The plan was to head west until the 9th meridian then north until around latitude 38 west, then head north-east for Plymouth. The winds were ideal for this plan, and we made very good progress. The winds never got above 12 knots for about three days and nights, and kept on a steady beam or broad reach all the while. The confused swells of Biscay meant however that the motion of the boat was irregular and unpredictable, so no rock-a-by-baby effect when trying to get to sleep. Jon felt a bit seasick to start with so I dug out the Traveleze lozenges and he felt a bit better. Frank had prepared a super stew which lasted around three days! Shipping was slight to start with, then we found ourselves crossing a track between the two TSZs of Finisterre and Ushant. Ships were great though and altered course when they saw we were sailing.
Frank and Jon kept watch together at the start of the trip, as all this was new to Jon, who was finding this journey a life-changing experience. Their bete noire was always the fishing boats, which zoomed around the sea unpredictably, especially at night, exhibiting all sorts of lights and then suddenly no lights at all.
Once past our 38 degree marker we headed up towards Plymouth, finally sighting the Lizard light some time after the wind had died and we had put on the engine. We saw lots of dolphins on our trip, and Jon spotted a whale close by while Frank and I were both below, but we all spotted a broaching whale south of Flamouth on that last day motoring towards Plymouth!
We negotiated the Eddystone Light and fiound our way into Plymouth harbour, passing Sue and David's new flat on the way, and tied up safely in Mayflower Marina at 11pm on the 15th. What a trip, over 900 miles in 8 days of sailing! A tot of Lord Nelson's special rum to celebrate, and Jon headed off home! Safe in harbour, what a feeling!