Destiny Back In The UK After 5 Years In The Arctic
16 October 2018 | Scrabster, NE Scotland
We left Vagur at 4am Sunday morning, having had a very pleasant stay. A return to the Faroe Islands to cruise and explore them properly has been added to the Venue List. The weather was not quite as forecast, the wind more South than the forecast South West which would have given us a better fine reach rather than being tight on the wind. Off an oil platform, the main autopilot Ray had another calibration failure which meant we tacked! Better than a gybe. So we kept on the tacked course for a few hours to reduce our cross track error, then early hours Monday Andy tacked us back. However, with the tight wind angle and despite having enough reefed sail out for the wind which gusted to mid 30kts we were struggling to make headway in the short very confused sea. This kept knocking the boat speed down causing the second autopilot to struggle too. I put the engine on to keep boat speed up and push us through the choppy waves and we continued like this until we arrived in Scrabster just before dark. This is a big commercial port with 3+m tide at Neaps at the moment. We arrived to moor against the main quay and were happy the Harbour Master came to take our lines, as it was a job just to throw them up to him! All secure we had a quick bite to eat and drink then off to bed for a glorious 12 hours :-) zzz
Today was forecast strong winds so we stayed in harbour being blown off the tyre covered quay wall. We have checked the engine and transmission but also repaired a couple of deck leaks where sealant has failed and a small amount of salt water had got in. Not surprising with the pounding seas we had this trip. We took one 'greenie' which covered the entire boat, a great rolling water which came right up over the doghouse and Finnur's canopy. 'Thank You Finnur but also Ralf who made the soft canopy'.
We had a lovely walk along the headland this afternoon, wow its still summer here, birds, insects, green grass and flowers even sheep. Just three weeks ago we left East Greenland with sniw on deck and the sea freezing! Amazing rock cliffs here but definitely not climber friendly very friable. At the old lighthouse we talked with the owner of one of the keeper houses. The lighthouse is not in service now so the two properties were sold several years ago. Tomorrow we leave at 8am to go round Dunnet Peninsula (the most northerly peninsula in Britain) into Pentland Firth to Wick. Only 35nm but we have to get the flood tide right its one of the most notorious tidal gates in Britain.
PICTURE : Destiny tied up in Scrabster harbour