29 June 2021 | Maryport Marina
03 October 2019 | Preston Marina
01 October 2019 | Peil Island
28 September 2019 | Liverpool Marina
21 September 2019 | Bangor
20 September 2019 | Porth Dinorwic Marina
16 September 2019 | Rhosneigr
16 September 2019 | Rhosneigr
16 September 2019 | Holyhead
14 September 2019 | Dulas Bay, Anglesea
13 September 2019 | Moelfre
02 September 2019 | Delaney Marina
27 August 2019 | Porth Dinllaen
27 August 2019 | Aberysthwyth
24 August 2019 | New Quay
24 August 2019 | Old Fishguard
23 August 2019 | Skoma North Haven
Off on our travels again.
03 July 2022 | Stranraer Marina
Ann and Steve Crome | heavy showers
Since the last post we made our way from Tighnabruiche, via Millport on Gt Cumbrae back to Troon where we headed off home for a bevvy of medical and other appointments. Back to the boat on 29 June for a day of maintenance and stocking up for our main cruise of the year to the Isle of Man, Northern Ireland and (weather permitting) Skye. Getting to the IoM from Troon means going around the Mull of Galloway which means getting the tides right. Also it's a long way from Troon to Peel and we are not into hard work so we planned it for a 3 day trip.
Plan was Friday (01.07) Troon to Stranraer, target c6h Saturday at leisure in Stranraer (as the tour guides say). Sunday round the mull to East Tarbet Bay (c9h). Monday Tarbet to Peel (c5h). Winds forecast for Friday strong SW, ie right on the nose. No good. Plan B, leave Saturday. But still SW wind. Plan C, go to Lamlash on Arran on Friday, due west so sailable, then Lamlash to Stranraer on Saturday, a southerly course, should be sailable. Plan C has worked and we are now in Stranraer. Great sail to Lamlash. Long day in a lot of rain to Stranraer, had better days but managed to sail a lot of the wat before the wind died. Leave at 0600 tomorrow to get the tides right around the Mull to anchor in E Tarbet Bay. Wind forecast is W or NW, course is mostly SE so should be good sail. Rain forecast iffy.... Rather dull (sorry) photo of the view from Stranraer Harbour down Loch Ryan. I just spent half an hour trying to produce a map from google maps that I could load here to show you the routes. If anybody knows how to do it, please drop me a line.
Chance encounter in Tignabruiche
18 June 2022 | Tignabruiche, Kyles of Bute
Ann and Steve Crome | showery, warm when the sun's out
Photo is of the Waverley, the only remaining sea going steam powered paddle steamer, which happened to pass us by after we had picked up a buoy outside the Royal Hotel in Tignabruiche in the Kyles of Bute. Short hop around here from Portavadie this morning took just under 3 hours in a mixture of cloud and sun and winds up to 25 kts. Boat speed up to 7 kts on half the jib and half the main.
This year's plan
17 June 2022
Ann and Steve Crome
Our plan for 2022 is a week of testing out Ann's hip - in progress and going well. If all good we will leave Troon on 1 July aiming to visit the Isle of Man and the Northern Irish east and north coasts, then on to somewhere up around Skye if possible. Back to Troon for the winter then around Ireland next year, at the third attempt maybe.
Off we go again
17 June 2022 | Portavardie Marina
Ann and Steve Crome | raining but improving
Ann's hip replacement on 19 March went brilliantly well and she is now only using a single hiking stick instead of crutches. So we decided to make a slow and careful return to sailing. We left Troon on Tuesday (14 June) for a slow careful meander around the Firth of Clyde, aiming to stay out of any significant waves. Tuesday was Troon to Lamlash on the east coast of Arran, 18 miles in 4 hours, most of it sailed. Wednesday was Lamlash to Lochranza on the northern tip of Arran, 18 miles in 3 1/4 hours, about an hour with cruising chute up; it was good to get some practice with that early in our season. Thursday was a dreary 11 miles from Lochranza to Portavardie on the mainland in drizzle, but we persevered and sailed almost all of it. Photo shows a wide shot of Portavardie marina with CG in the foreground. Today we spent the morning hiding from the rain (while you in the south sweltered in 32 degree heat, not sure I'm jealous). Tomorrow we are off on a quick hop round the corner to the Kyles of Bute.
What did we do in 2021
06 October 2021
Ann and Steve Crome
A few statistics for the year.
Juggling the COVID restrictions we sailed over two periods - April 24th to 26th and June 26th to September 20th. This is 88 days and we moved the boat on 48 of those, so a pretty busy trip. We travelled 1013 miles in 225 hours sailing for 77 and motoring for 114. We visited 47 different towns, villages, hamlets and anchorages across north west England and the southern half of the Scottish Islands. Two falls off the back of the boat, one trip to hospital. We had no trouble getting into marinas but couldn't get into a restaurant without a booking anywhere in Scotland. Where would we go back to? There are too many beautiful places to easily pick out one or two. Maybe Traigh Gheal, (Balfours Bay) on the south coast of Mull as an anchorage and Tayvallich at the top of Loch Sween as a village. Where would we no go back to? Craobh Haven is a great marina but it's expensive and there is absolutely nothing to do on land. Pullodobhrain anchorage just south of Oban is extolled in the pilot book as unmissable, we'd say it's very average and there are plenty of other equally pretty places. Photo shows the classic view of the painted houses in Tobermory, taken from CG.
Fantastic end to the season
21 September 2021 | Troon Yacht Haven
Ann and Steve Crome | Sunny!!
Here we are in Troon where CG will spend her winter. We're doing the boring stuff, cleaning and bedding her down for the winter before heading home on Friday via Blackpool and Leeds.
But, we have finished two of our best sails of the season. Boring start, Saturday, Port Ellen to Cambeltown, the rounding of the Mull of Kintyre (Q song?) which must be done with the right tides and wind. Tides you can work out winds are pot luck. We had none, which is better than not enough. Ten hours, 45 miles on the motor.
Then things perked up, Campbeltown to Loch Ranza on Arran on Sunday, expecting a motor got a fabulous beam wind. Six hours sailing less than one on the motor, brilliant, winds up to c15 knots, boat speed up to 5.8 kt. Monday the weather man prominsed us wind again and we got it, another beam reach, Loch Ranza to Troon. Six hours under sail, two on the motor due to a wind shadow around the northern tip of Arran. Boat speeds up to 7 kts in winds up to c17kts. (Hull speed for CG is around 8 kts.)
Off to a Tapas restaurant in Troon this evening.
Photo shows us in Loch Ranza celebrating an excellent successful cruise with the bottle of champers Ann won with the Knight's cup for her contribution to the Cruising Association in 2020.