La Trinite-sur-mer to Golfe de Morbihan
19 September 2013
Stu & Shar
Departing La Trinite for the Golfe (Gulf) de Moribihan we only had 0.7m under the keel and the tide was still running out. We had to leave as on this tide as we knew we would hit the bottom tonight. We only had 0.2m under us at low water last night and tonight it was going to be 0.3 less, time to move on. We rolled just the headsail as it was a light breeze on the beam and we only had a ten mile sail to the entrance of the Golfe. As we gently slid along at around 4-5kts one of the racing trimarans from La Trinite came flying past….it looked awesome (see photos). These things are pure speed machines and was great to see close up in action.
As we reached the entrance to the “Golfe” the tide was still running out, even though from the two sources I used, it indicated slack water at 12:30. Anyhow…we slowly sailed into the outgoing current which was still running at just under 3kts through the passage. We clawed our way in through the headland running as close to the edge of the outgoing stream as we dared, so as not to go aground. Currents in this area are like narrow fast running streams. The main body of water moves along at a couple of knots with back eddies running the opposite way in parts. Then snaking through this body of water in channels and passages are very fast running water at between 5-9kts. When you’re in them are very turbulent, have whirlpools, white water, overfalls and upwellings which throw your boat around like a cork….very much like a white water rapids for yachts….fun….. but you are not always in control when you sail them.
As we sailed up to an island in the middle of the gulf, Shar said this looks nice, so we pulled up to a mooring in a sheltered bay. This turned out to be the Ile aux Moines, we stayed here for four nights and used the dinghy to explore the numerous small islands and bays around the gulf. We had lunch on our own sitting in the sun on a sandy beach one day, sitting on some rocks overlooking Oyster farm the next……brilliant.
Vannes is a city at the end of a narrow shallow canal, which was to shallow to take Songbird into. Into the dinghy again and motor up to Vannes, parking on the bank just below the sill of the lock, we walked the last half kilometre into town. This was a sunny warm Saturday morning and the town was buzzing, the main road to the port was closed and packed with market traders selling their wares, it was the most lively place we had visited in France so far…..absolutely, great to see.