The story of Topaz Rival

01 December 2019 | Totnes
18 November 2019 | Totnes
08 November 2019 | Totnes
09 October 2019 | Totnes
03 October 2019 | Totnes
30 August 2019 | Bristol
28 August 2019 | Noss Marina
27 August 2019 | Salcombe
25 August 2019 | Plymouth
24 August 2019 | Fowey
23 August 2019 | River Yealm
28 July 2019 | Dartmouth
27 July 2019 | Dartmouth
26 July 2019 | Brixham
12 July 2019 | Dartmouth
11 July 2019 | Weymouth
10 July 2019 | Lymington
09 July 2019 | Hayling Island
08 July 2019 | Gosport
07 July 2019 | Swanage

To Baltic Wharf

03 October 2019 | Totnes
Martin Whitfield | F4 S
A big day for Topaz Rival as she was delivered to Baltic Wharf for her winter refit. Dawn and Colin joined me for the trip up river from Noss. Topaz seemed unusually slow, even under engine, and when we arrived at Totnes, the reason became apparent as she was bringing a whole colony of mussels with her. Obviously, the anti-foul could not cope with the marine life of the River Dart. The work has mostly been organised for the winter and watch this space for updates on how it is all going. The mast is due to come down tomorrow and the engine comes out on Monday. Sails have already gone to Dart Sails and Covers for a wash, repairs and new UV strip to replace the genoa's unpleasant brown with a suitable marine blue.

In good spirits on the way up river

Some of the marine life given a lift

ARC+ 2020

30 August 2019 | Bristol
Martin Whitfield
Taken tentative steps to go back to the Caribbean in 2020. Signed up to for the ARC+ today as the list is getting full already and would like to have the option even if we decide later to go to the Mediterranean instead. We shall see - the fee is largely refundable until July next year and we could always swap to join the ARC Portugal.

Back to Noss

28 August 2019 | Noss Marina
Martin Whitfield | SW F5
Should have been an easy downwind sail back to Dartmouth but the wind got up to the top end of a F5 and was accompanied by a good bit of the wet stuff. As we rounded Start Point it became clear that Regatta week had started as Dartmouth Bay was full of yachts. Tied up in the pouring rain! Thank goodness for the marina staff.

Salcombe again

27 August 2019 | Salcombe
Martin Whitfield | SW F3
Debated whether to stop off in Salcombe or sail the whole way back to Dartmouth. Salcombe can be tricky with two dogs as the dinghy pontoon can get very busy! However, having discovered that I can launch the Portabote singlehanded (under Ewart's guidance) I though it was worth the risk coming in on my own. All the mooring buoys were taken and opted for the quieter option of the visitors' pontoon in "The Bag". Good choice as we had the last alongside berth and a short dinghy ride to some loverly cornfields off Tosnos Point. Took the dogs into town in the morning before leaving for Dartmouth.

The dogs give directions to the best walking spot

Sunny days

24 August 2019 | Fowey
Martin Whitfield | E F4
Continuing West and we had a good sail down to Fowey, mainly using the genoa downwind. Here we rafted next to a Nauticat on a mooring buoy in a very crowded spot. Not surprising as it was the end of Festival Week. The whole placed was packed walking the dogs - not even room enough for a quick pint - and then the fireworks started. Thought we had escaped this (on Buzz’s behalf) in Regatta week in Dartmouth but we were moored not 20 yards from the launch site of a very big display! Buzz woofed for a while but then went silent.

Going West

23 August 2019 | River Yealm
Martin Whitfield | E F3
Not much sailing in August, as weather not brilliant. However, Dawn and I had a few days down on the boat in the middle of the month as she was playing in Ilfracombe at the weekend. The weather prevented us from going out, but we did make a decision to have the winter refit done at Baltic Wharf, so Topaz Rival will be coming out of the water at the end of September.
However, Ewart and I braved the Bank Holiday weekend with a planned trip going westwards. First stop the River Yealm where I have never been before. Great place, very quiet and we tied up on a river pontoon before a pub supper in Noss Mayo.
Vessel Name: Topaz Rival
Vessel Make/Model: Rival 36
Hailing Port: Dartmouth
Crew: Martin Whitfield and Dawn Kelly
Topaz Rival's Photos - Topaz Rival as purchased (Main)
Photos 1 to 11 of 11
Topaz on her original berth: She has been here for 20 years or more
The quarter berth: No to sure whether to believe this, but was told this was the original plastic cover!
Instrument panel: The depth and autopilot work, not so sure about the GPS!
Bukh 36: I’m told that Bukh paint is first class. Well this engine is 29-years-old...
Survey lift shows keel shape: Topaz is the scheel keel version 1.5m draft
Rudder and skeg: As Tom Cunliffe says “a wholesome compromise between precise steering at sea, comfort, and athletic steering in harbour”. We’ll see about the latter...
Dirt and mould: An image of neglect
Deck: Nothing that a good clean can’t solve
Crazy portlights: There are 10 of these...
Winter refit at Baltic Wharf
18 Photos
Created 2 November 2019
A selection of pictures from sailing in 2019
31 Photos
Created 1 August 2019
Topaz Rival at or about the time of survey in December 2018
14 Photos
Created 8 May 2019