Since one low pressure system after another are passing this part of the world, we had to do something. For two weeks in a row we had nothng but SW and W winds, i e right on our nose.
This weather has caused floodings with people becoming homeless and even a few casualties in Central Europe (Slovakia, Austria and Germany). In Sweden too, all the raining has caused floodings, as in the UK.
No reason for us to feel sorry for ourselves, for these persistent headwinds and a few rainshowers.
Anyhow, today the forecast was SSW backing to S and then decreasing and backing further to SE, before increasng again tomorrow and veering to SW (what else?)
Although we've had a great time here in the UK and Guernsey, we are getting a bit itchy now and would like to go to S Brittany ASAP.
Thus we made the 60 miles 'jump' to Perros-Guirrec on the 'Côtes d'Armor' in N Brittany ( pos. N 48,48 W 02,26). A bay, outside the town, well shelterd from anything 'without a North in it' with five visitor's bouys.
The wind turned out to be weaker than predicted and SW (!) most of the day so we motorsailed all day except two hours.
Interesting for me, since I never tend to motor any significant distances otherwise, but here in the Channel, it seems from the local sailors we have been talking to, that anything except strong headwind is considered a good weather window !! Thus we motored the equivalent distance as from Västervik on the Swedish mainland to Visby on Gotland. The latter being something I would never even consider doing...
Well, one's mindset change, for the good and the bad, Man is an extremely adaptive species...
As a maybe discouraging aside, we have now covered 950 miles since we left Falsterbo in Sweden and even though I hate to admit it, we've been motoring most part of those miles. The only REALLY nice sailing thus far, was that first night from river Elbe and out on the North Sea. We are in good hope for that to change soon enough though. (after successfully made it through the 'Raz de Sein' to Isabelle's 'homeland' S Brittany.
We tied up to the bouy at 7PM and fell a sleep immediately after dinner. We were up already at 5AM this morning to leave St Peters Port on the high tide.
more to follow, we hope to be able to row ashore tomorrow...
At the picture you cn see Isbelle happily (?) hoisting the French courtesy flag
The lows keep sweeping by, one after another. Westerlies to Sou'westerlies day after day makes us stayig put.
Far from imprisonment though. We are still enjoying everyt moment of it.
During the weekend we'll explore a bit further. Today we spent a few hours in the Castle Cornet with its old Garrison and the associated museums, and there are a set of new pictures which you can access simply by pressing the button on the top right of this page, named: 'Photo Gallery'
Tomorrow, weather permiting, we'll make a bus trip around the island with a few stops.
Victor Hugo, the famous French author, lived here in St Peter Port during some 15 years in the late 1800's in exile. The house he lived in is a museum, which we will have a closer lokk at too.
Cheers from this lovely island!
Nothiing much to tell ya.
Mostly sunny weather, and we'e basically just enjoying like people on vacation. Walking in the town, buying crab or fresh fish at the Mongers, socailising a bit with other sailors in the marina.
Admittingly we really like this place, that we almost 'by mistake' ended up in. That's the beauty of cruising without an agenda.
Also, sicne the Island is free from VAT, the local Chandler has had a couple of visits from us.
Off course the proverbial 'Cruising is doing boat maintenance in exotic places' to some extent has to affect even us ;-)
I have change two burners on the 'state of the art' Taylor kerosene/paraffin stove onboard, and we'll have to climb the masthead to reinstall one out of two jib halyards that in some mysterious way was lying on the deck one morning in the North Sea.
No big deal.
we DO keep a thorough look at the Met forecast twice a day. As soon as we get favourble and light wind we will go on. Next 'target' is l'Aber Wrach in Northern Brittany, a supposedly lovely and sheltered spot in a river mouth and an excellent palce for the next leap to the Chenal du four between the mainland and Ile d'Oessant
Honestly, we had a miserable night at anchor. Tidal stream combined with quite a bit of wind, swells and wakes from the ferries all together made it very difficult to sleep. And we have been at a few choppy anchorages before, believe me.
Because of that, we spent almost all the morning in bed, trying to catch up on sleep.
We still have some small jobs to do on the boat and the SW winds seem likely to persist a few days more, so we figured it would be best to enter the marina, then I could do some work too, with a fast and reliable internet connection.
There is no VAT on Guernsey, so we would like to check the local chandlers price level. Among other things, a PLB (emergency transmitter) could be something to consider.
Mostly sunny weather today, and when we entered the marina the Harbour Control told us some 140 racing sailboats going from port to port in the Channel were expected to arrive tonight. Thus he wanted all of the rest of us inside the marina and the racing crews on the visitor's pontoons, where they could party half the night without disturbing anyone.
Since we arrived the marina at lo tide at 3PM we had to wait at the pontoon until at least 8PM when they started to direct all of us into the slips of the marina. The Basin inside the marina has a sill, that protects it from drying out completely at low tide.
On today's pic you can see the Castle Cornet in he sunshine, compared to yesterday(which I happened to call 'the Fort' in my ignorence yesterday) One of the main attractions, with several museums including one maritime museum. We are looking forward to visit it one of the following days...
07/11/2009, St Peter Port, Guernsey
A seen on the picture and well pointed out in Reed's, fog is common here.
Good, so now we've seen it. Today we went for an Expedition. Mountain-climbing? Diving? Canoeing? No, just the ordinary cruiser life-style essential shopping. Equals gettign some food from the nearest grocery store back to the boat.
Consists of the following:
Inflating the dinghy (after searching through the entire boat for the valves, the pump and the oars, all stored at different spots onboard.
Rowing the 2 ca to the stone wall called dinghy dock in swells, surge and a cross-wind and the outgoing tide.
Trying to get rid a variety of fresh seaweeds attached to our clothes and feet after safely arived on shore, soaking wet.
Then the easy part: Strolling around in the Port area, where a calssical boat meeting is taking place this weekend. Purchasing what we need in terms of food and storing it in our rug-sacks/backpacks and then enjoying a wonderful 'moules marinières' at a pub, accompanied by rich, locally brewed Real Ale. A lunch worthy of a true seafarer, Adm. Nelson maybe?
After that we discovered that someone had pulled theplug in the entire harbour basin. I have no other way of describing it. Quite amazing that since five hours when we came on shore, some six and a half meter of water just disappeared! Incredible for a northern Pagan as myself.
Then some exploration of the marine life that was stranded on the beach at low tide and back to the dinghy.
Reversed process with the dinghy. I e first carry it down to the water that had moved 'offshore' some 45 meters (glad it wasn't the other way around...) getting soaked while loading our stuff in it and getting ourselves onboard. Then de-sanding and de-seaweeding ourselves and our sandals before going down below.
That said, we were quite lucky in that the rain actually didn't start until we were back. Grog to the Chief Commanding Officer up there... the Met maybe?
St Peter Port is a very nice town and Guernsey seems well worth exploring so it isn't that bad that they forecast SW for the next few days.
And then there is the Real Ale! We'l be back in town tomorrow -cheers