09. August 2012 · 1 comment · Categories: Posts

Sorry I haven’t emailed you an update in a while.  It took a bit of effort to escape the pirates.  I finally ditched them on the most southerly point in England, Lizard Point.

You can not get any further south with out a boat.  And that is exactly what I have and hope to do…..

if the weather ever breaks.

In the mean time, when you are not sailing, you have to have someplace to put your boat.  You can tie it up to a dock, but you will have to pay the owners of the dock (usually called a Marina) a lot of money each day.  You can save money anchoring in a river, but in England even the river authorities charge you a fee to anchor.  At least it is less money then a Marina, but you do have trouble on anchor.


First your anchor can drag.  If you leave your boat the wind could strengthen and pull your boats anchor along the sea bed.  This can be bad if your boat hits something or a neighbours boat.  Luckly we have not had that happen yet.  But we did come back from a day out to find our boat moved.  The high cliffs in Cornwall blocked the mobile phone signal and the Harbour Authorities had been calling all day to get us to move our boat.  They gave up and moved it themselves.  We came back all freaked that the anchor had dragged.  Then we checked our voice mail messages.  Opps!

Secound the wind can change direction and your boat can end up somewhere different.  Usually not in a good spot.  We ended up only a few feet away from a cement dock when the wind changed one day while we were out.  Lucky escape.  The boats paying £40 a night were not happy we were anchored 2 feet off their dock.  Don’t tell them we figured out the code to their WiFi while we were there!

Thirdly if the wind dies down at low tide slack water, the anchored boats can wonder all over the place and sometimes hit each other if they are too close.  We had to anchor in closer one night when the channel was cleared.  The wind died so we were stuck on anchor watch in the middle of the night just missing our neighbours by a few feet.

Fourthly, really creepy boats can move in beside you.  When we saw this creepy boat move in, we knew it was time to leave.

I barked and barked at them, but they would not go away.   I told my owners I was tired of waiting for a 4 day weather window to sail to Spain.  Their was a small two day window opening and I talked them into ‘cutting the distance down’ and sailing to the Finistere Peninsula in France.


Well off we left yesterday on a fair tide out of Falmouth in the afternoon hoping for the best.  But you guys know they never have any luck. 

It did start out nice.  The winds were light, but steady and the sea state was only a little rolly.  The winds shifted and got lighter, so they got out their great big cruising shoot and had fun playing with that.

Then it went down hill from there.  The first person to try and use the loo discovered..it was not fixed.  They had decided to ‘shut her down’ and join me in the ‘great outdoors’ peeing ‘elfresco’.  Only they used a bucket to throw it over board.


Then the winds completely died so they packed up the sails and started the engine.  Engine started spitting out white smoke and overheating. Engine off, sails back up and lets see what is wrong.

They had to dismantle the cooling system to get at and clear a load of weed from the sea cock so the engine could get cold water to cool itself.  After a load of tries they found a BBQ skire, with the end bent into a small ‘U’ shape twisted in position before lifting, started to lift it out and clear it.

After wallowing at 1-1.5 kn they were finally able to drop the sails and start the engine as the sun set.

You would think that would be the last of their bad luck….but no way.  Everything must come in threes.

The winds quickly picked up again ,shortly after, on the beam.  They wanted to clear the decks in case it got rough and while stuffing the cruising shoot through the fore hatch the spinnaker halyard (an important line that runs inside the mask) accidentally got pulled out.  Noooo!

But they made it!  Yes they have left England behind and moved 100 miles south to fairer weather.

It is actually sunnier and warmer here.  The french are all well dressed, slender and actively engaged in some organised water sport.  There is no tacky sea side shops selling stupid floatation devices.

We missed the tides to get around the point of Finistere so we are tucked into the port of L’Aderwrac’h, south of Brest.  It is expensive here.  No anchoring allowed and tying to a buoy still costs you 30 euros.  But it did come with unlimited Wifi and showers. 

Despite all our fears that the language difference would cause a problem…some things are surprisingly easy to understand.  Guess what this means?

What else are you going to write on the back of your ‘welcome too’ our town signs.

After wandering around all day on no sleep there was only one thing that must be done by all Brits, and honorarily Brits……moules marinieres et pomme frites!

Especially as the protection of mussels and their breeding beds is the reason we can not anchor on this river any more. 

Off south again in the morning.  Through the Chenal du Four and the Raz de Sein on a fair tide in the morning to arrive at Audierne by late afternoon.  This will put us in a good position to get across the Bay of Biscay to Spain on the next 3 day weather window.

No they have not fixed the toilet or the spinniker line yet.  I am sure they can improvise for now.  Email Groco and tell them to send help soon!

Until next time enjoy the privacy!


1 Comment

  1. Quinn,

    Good to see that you have landed on foreign shores.