10/06/2024

A Launch Date

A Long, Wet, Cold Winter

Having brought Aphrodite ashore in mid November 2023 I was looking forward to getting lots of work done on her during the winter, but a long cold, damp winter followed and not a great deal was done until late March 2024. As you would get down to the boat and it was just to damp to do any paintwork.

I was not the only one down at the yard moaning about the weather, everybody was late launching. With the poor weather and my wee job as an exam invigilator keeping me busy in May and June I took the decision to wait until late June before getting Aphrodite back un the water. Looking at the tide tables Wednesday 26th June looked good.

Many of the visits over the winter were to check that no damage had been done and that he batteries were OK. I've been impressed with the solar panels and the Victron Power Management system. At the end of May the SmartShunt stopped broadcasting on BlueTooth. I dropped an email to the supplier who asked for some details - BlueTooth light not flashing and the error light no on. Within 24 hours they got back to me saying it was a problem with the unit and should be returned to them. Victron will swap it out for a new one.

To fix the problem where the fuel system was ingesting air via the bleeding screw I purchased the correct screw from Volvo Penta only to find that at some point in the past the thread had been cross-threaded hence the bigger replacement. Donald at the yard sorted this out by drilling out the thread and fitting a hexicore so that we could use the correct screw. Looking forward to running up the engine to see what happens.


30/05/2024

Astronavigation

In the Begining

I have had a love/hate relationship with Astronavigation since first looking at it in school. I studied for a Navigation 'O' Level back in the late 1970's. It has always been something I wanted to be proficient with, but was totally discouraged 'put off' due to the rather bamboozling text book, Mary Blewitt's Celestial Navigation for Yachtsmen ISBN-13 : 978-1408132128. Clearly written for a different era. I'd suggest the Jurassic age with enough spherical trigonometry to put me off geometry for life, but there has always been a little voice inside that said, 'You should really understand this stuff'.

Playing with the Subject

Over the years I've had books out of the library that I've picked up, looked at, tried to get my head round some of the language and concepts then quietly returned them to the librarian just as confused, sometimes even more so!

A Quite Night at Anchor

From time to time you sail with some amazing people. One such occasion we were sat quietly at anchor and the subject of astro came up in conversation. The skipper spent about half an hour explaining the basics and that little voice inside said, 'see I told you so – it is not that difficult'.

A few months later I was sailing with the same skipper and explained that I had a 'bad experiance' with the Blewitt book and could they recommend something that led me by the hand in very small steps. They kindly suggested David Burch's Celestial Navigation: A Complete Home Study Course ISBN-13 : 978-0914025511, one birthday present sorted.

Celestial Navigation: A Complete Home Study Course

The book arrived and a quick thumb though it and it was exactly what I needed. Step by step with worked examples and a bit at the back with all the details, the boring bits well hidden until you were ready to read and digest them. Even so it was some time before I got stuck into the book, but thankfully there was not a haversine in sight!

With the wet, miserable winter of 2023/24 I had no excuse as there was little work I could do on the boat, it being so cold and damp. I set too working my way through the chapters slowly working out in my head what I needed to do and how to do it.

I did take a look at David's YouTube Channel, but quickly left as he rambles on like an absent minded professor and is extremely frustrating to listen to! After several weeks of reading and a lot of Internet searches I found The Nautical Almanac where they post both the Nautical Almanac and Sight Reduction Tables (Pub 249). In turn that has lead to me printing out the daily pages, tables and sight reduction tables for the days and latitudes that I'm sailing in allowing me to great my own document.

The Sextant

The decision to buy a sextant was logical, I really did need one, but which one. I've played with a Davis Mark 25 for some sun sights, but my research suggested that it was not great for stars and planets. The one that a lot of diffrent sources suggested was the Celestaire Astra IIIB so I dug deep into my pockets and contacted Alice at Crews Navigation in Plymouth and ordered one.

image host

Astra IIIB Deluxe Sextant
Picture: Celestaire.com

My initial thoughts are that the instrument has a more solid feel that the Davis and once the boat is back in the water, June 2024, I'll need to put theory into practice. I'll mention in posts how I get on.

Given what I now know I wonder if picking up Mary Blewitt's book would be a good idea?


26/04/2024

OYT: Trip 09 of 2024 - Day 4

Friday 26th April 2024


0000 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.70'N Long: 001° 17.67'W

1300 hrs

Slipped lines and headed out past the the Cowes Breakwater. On the main hoist a line got tangled and it took some time to fix. I helmed, attempting to keep Prolific 'on station', using a couple of transits. A useful exercise in keeping the boat still.

1500 hrs

An afternoon in the east Solent tacking and gybing in some fresh winds.

1900 hrs

At anchor in Ryde Bay, dinner and sorted out the night navigation exercise back to Ocean Village.

2100 hrs

Anchor raised crew take over command and pilot Prolific into the north channel, then up Southampton Water to Ocean Village.

0000 hrs

Tied up alongside, time for a coffee and then bed.

All times are UTC.



The Numbers for Prolific:

Underway Distance
NM
Avg SOG
knots
Max SOG
knots
Night
Hours
Day: 9h 45m 20.00 10.00 17.00 3h 00m
Trip: 7h 15m 148.00 3.80 17.00 3h 00m
Year: 31h 26m 140.00 3.84 17.00 3h 00m


Crew: Constantinos, Lauren, Glyn, Katie, Willoughby, Vince, Sandy and the school crew.


Sunrise: 0425 hrs Sunset: 1950 hrs


Weather: Forecast valid from: 01:00 (UTC+1) on Fri 26 Apr 2024 until 01:00 (UTC+1) on Sat 27 Apr 2024

Dover, Wight, Portland, Plymouth

Cyclonic 3 to 5, occasionally easterly or northeasterly 6 in north Wight and north Portland. Slight or moderate, but rough for a time in west Plymouth. Rain or showers. Good, occasionally poor

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 26/04/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 26/04/2024


25/04/2024

OYT: Trip 09 of 2024 - Day 3

Thursday 25th April 2024


0000 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.70'N Long: 001° 17.67'W

0705 hrs

Cast off from the quay. The crew had been advised that we were leaving early, but still managed to go ashore to use the facilities and got back on time, just.

1200 hrs

Lat: 50° 37.62'N Long: 001° 43.28'W

Having made good time running on over the bay with both the main and mizzen well out and preventors deployed. The watch on deck were informed that we would be entering the Solent via the north passage, to dodge some of the tide, and get a good look at Hurst Point.

In a big boat it looked like we were going to ram the beach, lets not mention the poorly marked pots! Eventually we changed course by 90° and were running parallel to the beach with the wind building. With one reef in the mizzen, a full main and the jib hoisted we were charging along at about 8 knots.

Passing Hurst Point we noticed a catamaran to port that was exiting the Solent and was either asleep or looking at their phone. Lauren, on the helm, let go with five blasts on the horn as both vessels were travelling at speed had a huge grin on her face.

Vince came forward and reported that we were recording a F7, wind against tide would be interesting, but we were still making 7 knots over the round. Things were brisk!

1650 hrs

All tied fast back at Cowes Yacht Haven. As we were entering Cowes I noticed a World War II Spitfire overhead.

All times are UTC.



The Numbers for Prolific:

Underway Distance
NM
Avg SOG
knots
Max SOG
knots
Night
Hours
Day: 9h 45m 59.00 10.00 17.00 0h 00m
Trip: 18h 51m 129.50 3.80 17.00 0h 00m
Year: 31h 26m 140.00 3.84 17.00 0h 00m


Crew: Constantinos, Lauren, Glyn, Katie, Willoughby, Vince, Sandy and the school crew.


Sunrise: 0425 hrs Sunset: 1950 hrs


Weather: Forecast valid from: 01:00 (UTC+1) on Thu 25 Apr 2024 until 01:00 (UTC+1) on Fri 26 Apr 2024

Dover, Wight, Portland

Variable 2 or 3, becoming west or southwest 4 to 6 for a time. Smooth or slight, occasionally moderate in Dover and Wight. Showers. Good, occasionally moderate.

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 24/04/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 24/04/2024


24/04/2024

OYT: Trip 09 of 2024 - Day 2

Wednesday 24th April 2024


0000 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.70'N Long: 001° 17.67'W

0730 hrs

Awake and quietly left the boat to check out the showers. Oh dear, another marina who's architect has no idea what a sailor needs from an amenity block. I want somewhere that I can undress with ease, can hang up my kit, can sit, has a screen that keeps my kit dry and don't need to press a wee button to keep the supply of warmish water running.

Despite not being the greatest showers on the planet the place was busy – even with muzak playing insistently. Showered and shaved I returned back to the boat for breakfast.

0954 hrs

Cast off from the pontoon heading for Weymouth, Dorset. On leaving the river Medina we turned to the west, raised the sails and motor sailed down the western Solent in light winds.

1500 hrs

Just off St Albans Ledge, an interesting standing wave on the ledge, the wind filled in and we were able to turn off the engine and properly sail. Man overboard under sail followed in quite quiet conditions.

The ranges were pretty active and the sound of the guns could clearly be heared.

1815 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.70'N Long: 001° 17.67'W

Arrived Weymouth. My second visit to this wee town, must try and get back and explore it one day.

The crew departed for a walk round town and to the beach. Where one or two got rather wet.

2200 hrs

The day's work done I finally was able to have a shower.

All times are UTC.



The Numbers for Prolific:

Underway Distance
NM
Avg SOG
knots
Max SOG
knots
Night
Hours
Day: 6h 21m 50.00 7.90 10.00 0h 00m
Trip: 9h 06m 60.50 6.66 10.00 0h 00m
Year: 31h 26m 140.00 3.84 12.00 0h 00m


Crew: Constantinos, Lauren, Glyn, Katie, Willoughby, Vince, Sandy and the school crew.


Sunrise: 0425 hrs Sunset: 1950 hrs


Weather: Forecast valid from: 01:00 (UTC+1) on Wed 24 Apr 2024 until 01:00 (UTC+1) on Thu 25 Apr 2024

Wight, Portland, Plymouth

Variable 2 to 4 in Portland, elsewhere north or northwest 3 to 5, becoming variable 2 to 4. Smooth or slight, occasionally moderate. Showers. Good, occasionally moderate.

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 24/04/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 24/04/2024


23/04/2024

OYT: Trip 09 of 2024 - Day 1

Tuesday 23rd April 2024


0000 hrs

Lat: 50° 53.71'N Long: 001° 23.50'W

I had driven up to Southampton the previous day to assist on one of Prolific’s maintenance days. After doing several tasks the Sea Staff went out for dinner and a couple of pints at one of the places in Ocean Village.

1300 hrs

The group from Greig City Academy, who run the boat Scaramouch, from north London school joined the boat.

1515 hrs

Cast off from the pontoon heading for Cowes. We had left the pontoon with enough tide to get out of the berth and then slowly motored down the Itchen and Southampton Water giving the usual winch drills.

Before entering Cowes we watched, Triana, one of the Golden Globe Race 2023 competitors complete their round the world adventure. While not a fan of these 'back to the golden age of sailing' events it was interesting to watch a lone sailing boat surrounded by lots of excited people in ribs.

1800 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.70'N Long: 001° 17.67'W

Alongside at Cowes Yacht Haven, a new venue to me as we usually come alongside at Sheppards when in Cowes.

All times are UTC.



The Numbers for Prolific:

Underway Distance
NM
Avg SOG
knots
Max SOG
knots
Night
Hours
Day: 2h 45m 10.50 3.80 5.00 0h 00m
Trip: 2h 45m 10.50 3.80 5.00 0h 00m
Year: 22h 20m 81.50 3.65 12.00 0h 00m


Crew: Constantinos, Lauren, Glyn, Katie, Willoughby, Vince, Sandy and the school crew.


Sunrise: 0425 hrs Sunset: 1950 hrs


Weather: Forecast valid from: 01:00 (UTC+1) on Tue 23 Apr 2024 until 01:00 (UTC+1) on Wed 24 Apr 2024

Wight, Portland, Plymouth

North or northeast, backing northwest for a time, 3 to 5. Slight or moderate in Plymouth, but elsewhere smooth or slight. Occasional rain. Good, occasionally moderate.

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 23/04/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 23/04/2024


24/03/2024

OYT Shakedown - Day 3

Sunday 24th March 2024


0000 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.26'N Long: 001° 31.67'W

0700 hrs

Climbed on deck to a stunning sunny morning. The plan for the day was to get Prolific back to Ocean Village for some 'tight space' manoeuvring for Constantinos and Andrew. While I was enjoying the sunshine on deck Andrew was out with his drone and taking some stunning shots of the boat on the pontoon.

image host

Prolific alongside at Royal Lymington YC
© Andrew Wilkes 23/03/2024

image host

Prolific alongside at Royal Lymington YC
© Andrew Wilkes 23/03/2024

0810 hrs

Slipped the lines and followed the ferry down the river. At the mouth of the marked channel the yacht club have a platform with a hut and small balcony on it, clearly used for racing, but I wondered if it is an AirBnB.

A gentle motor up the western Solent then as we turned into Southampton Water and head to wind we raised the main then one by one put all three reefs in checking that everything was running smoothly.

1100 hrs

Arrived Ocean Village and then started on the hard work of 'parking in tight spaces'. Thankfully, no bumps to either boats or pontoons.

1300 hrs

With all the practice done it was time to finally tie up, have lunch, prep the boat for handover. While several Sea Staff were staying onboard I headed home.

A very enjoyable few days working the boat with just Sea Staff allowing us to refresh our skills without a crew of young people and put the boat through its paces in heavy weather.

All times are UTC.



The Numbers for Prolific:

Underway Distance
NM
Avg SOG
knots
Max SOG
knots
Night
Hours
Day: 4h 50m 13.42 2.78 8.00 0h 00m
Trip: 19h 35m 71.00 3.62 12.00 0h 00m
Year: 19h 35m 71.00 3.62 12.00 0h 00m


Crew: Constantinos (Skipper), James B, Josh, Andrew W, Tom K, Robert J, Sara A, Rooby, Juliette D and Sandy.


Sunrise: 0542 hrs Sunset: 1931 hrs


Weather: Forecast valid from: 00:00 (UTC) on Sun 24 Mar 2024 until 00:00 (UTC) on Mon 25 Mar 2024

Dover, Wight, Portland, Plymouth, North Biscay

Westerly or northwesterly 4 to 6, becoming variable 2 to 4 later, then becoming southerly 5 later in Plymouth. Moderate or rough, becoming slight or moderate later. Showers, then rain later in Plymouth. Good, becoming moderate later in Plymouth.

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 24/03/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 24/03/2024


23/03/2024

OYT Shakedown - Day 2

Saturday 23rd March 2024


0000 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.62'N Long: 001° 17.60'W

0900 hrs

Slipped our lines at Sheppards and headed up river to the fuel barge that opened at 1000 hrs. On going up river I spotted a boat that I last saw in Scarborough back in 2021, and latter dropped them a message saying I had spotted them.

1000 hrs

Alongside the fuel barge Josh and Rooby tended the refuelling while the rest of the crew had a 'happy hour', boat cleaning.

1130 hrs

Fuelling complete. Thankfully, I was not paying, but wondered if they give Nectar Points.

As we entered the Solent we could see some very dark angry squalls to the west of us and waited until they had passed before raising the mizzen and the staysail.

In a matter of half an hour the day had changed from a pleasant spring morning to a cold and very wet day, but the squall soon passed and we got to work putting the boat through he paces making sure that she good for the start of the season.

After several hours of sailing to windward and lots of tacks it was decided to call into Lymington, not one of the usual ports of call on the Solent, for the night.

image host

Prolific tacking in the Solent

1530 hrs

We dropped the anchor to the east of the channel into Lymington to wait for the tide. Sitting in 40 knots of wind with the rain lashing the boat watching it from 'the shed' was quite comfortable, in an open boat things would have been very wet.

1630 hrs

The weather had cleared and the anchor lifted before we followed the ferry into Lymington. Andrew being a member of Royal Lymington Yacht Club had arranged for us to tie up to their pontoon for the night.

1730 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.26'N Long: 001° 31.67'W

After a couple of practice parks, which attracted quite a large audience, we tied up alongside and Andrew left for his own boat. House rules state that you must fly a club pennant when alongside.

After supper we piled into the bar and enjoyed a few beers - I enjoyed the atmosphere in the club to the hurly burley of the pub in Cowes the previous evening. Several club members came over and asked about the boat and the charity.

Sounds like Prolific holds the record for the largest boat to come alongside.

All times are UTC.



The Numbers for Prolific:

Underway Distance
NM
Avg SOG
knots
Max SOG
knots
Night
Hours
Day: 6h 00m 23.25 3.87 10.00 0h 00m
Trip: 12h 45m 57.85 4.53 12.00 0h 00m
Year: 12h 45m 57.85 4.53 12.00 0h 00m


Crew: Constantinos (Skipper), James B, Josh, Andrew W, Tom K, Robert J, Sara A, Rooby, Juliette D and Sandy.


Sunrise: 0602 hrs Sunset: 1824 hrs


Weather: Forecast valid from: 00:00 (UTC) on Sat 23 Mar 2024 until 00:00 (UTC) on Sun 24 Mar 2024.

Wight, Portland, Plymouth

West or northwest 5 to 7. Moderate or rough, becoming rough or very rough in west and south Plymouth. Squally showers. Good, occasionally moderate.

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 23/03/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 23/03/2024


22/03/2024

OYT Shakedown - Day 1

Friday 22nd March 2024


0000 hrs

Lat: 50° 53.71'N Long: 001° 23.50'W

There had been a call for volunteers for a Sea Staff only trip on Prolific before the start of the season to give the new skipper and first mate some practice parking the boat and to check out the rigging as both masts had been out over the winter. I thought it would be good to go along as it gave me some time on the boat before my first trip of the season.

I drove up on the day before and met up with most of the Sea Staff onboard the boat. Prolific was not on her usual mooring as all of the pontoons on the south side of Ocean Village were out of the water for dredging and I found her on the north side of the hotel.

0800 hrs

The remaining sea staff arrived and twenty minutes later the two riggers from Allspars turned up with their kit.

0930 hrs

Slipped the mooring at Ocean Village and headed out. By the time we joined Southampton Water the staysail, main and mizzen had all been hoisted for the riggers to complete their checks. Very quickly the jib followed, I've never seen all of the sails up so promptly.

We scuttled down Southampton water with the riggers looking intently at the rigging, feeling it with their hands and tightening it with massive spanners. Then much to my surprise climbed the rigging on the way back up Southampton water with 25 knots of apparent wind. Glad I don't do that for a living!

Rigger at work

Rigger at work

1215 hrs

With the riggers work completed we dropped the sails and returned to Ocean Village. Dropped them off for their next job and had lunch.

1330 hrs

Lunch finished we set off again, but this time purely under engine for some 'pontoon bashing' at Trinity Landing in Cowes.

The next few hours were spent parking Prolific to the landing and much to my surprise I was invited to park the boat! With the Staff Skipper beside me I carefully manoeuvred the boat next to the pontoon and successfully brought her alongside without scratching the paintwork or bashing the pontoon.

Prolific alongside Trinity Landing, Cowes

Prolific alongside Trinity Landing, Cowes.


Prolific setting up for another attempt at parking

Prolific setting up for another park.

1730 hrs

Lat: 50° 45.62'N Long: 001° 17.60'W

Tied up along side at Sheppards Marina in Cowes.

Just after we tied up alongside Willoughby, one of the OYT Sea Staff, popped in to say hello.

Following supper we ajourned to The Anchor Inn to quench our thurst. A rather busy pub full of yachties.



The Numbers for Prolific:

Underway Distance
NM
Avg SOG
knots
Max SOG
knots
Night
Hours
Day: 6h 45m 34.60 5.12 12.00 0h 00m
Trip: 6h 45m 34.60 5.12 12.00 0h 00m
Year: 6h 45m 34.60 5.12 12.00 0h 00m


Crew: Constantinos (Skipper), James B, Josh, Andrew W, Tom K, Robert J, Sara A, Rooby, Juliette D and Sandy.


Sunrise: 0604 hrs Sunset: 1822 hrs


Weather: Forecast valid from: 00:00 (UTC) on Fri 22 Mar 2024 until 00:00 (UTC) on Sat 23 Mar 2024.

Dover, Wight, Portland, Plymouth

Southwest veering northwest 4 to 6. Slight or moderate, occasionally rough in Plymouth. Occasional rain or drizzle. Moderate or good, occasionally poor.

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 22/03/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 22/03/2024


05/03/2024

Bleeding Screws

Tuesday 5th March 2024

With the weather finally improving I popped down to the boat to start the list of jobs that need doing. The first one was to sort out that secondary fuel filter air leak where the bleed screw is.

Knowing that the bleed screw was not an original I purchased the correct part from Volvo, how much for a screw with a hole in it! When I came to fit it discovered that in the past that somebody had cross threaded the hole and replaced the bleed screw with a bigger bolt hence the problem with air ingestion.

I dropped into the engineering shed at the yard to speak with Donald and arrange a visit to the boat, the hole re-tapped and a bigger bolt to be used, but hearing that I had an original Volvo bleed screw came up with a better solution. Drill out the hole, fit and glue in a 'sleeve', I am sure it has a technical name, with the correct thread for the Volvo bleed screw and job done.


11/02/2024

OYT Training Weekend - Day 2

Sunday 11th February 2024

0930 hrs

Accident and Incident Avoidance and Management for Watchleaders and Bosuns
I was looking forward to this talk with great interest, but the talk was clearly mis-titled. The speaker had lots to say about things in general where I was looking for a more detailed look at issues with Prolific and the trust’s safety management system.

1400 hrs

Chart corrections, Life rafts and lifejackets, and a Safeguarding update
An afternoon made up of three sections, chart corrections and the new electronic way that the Hydrographic Office sends out chart updates.

A session on checking and packing lifejackets, and the demonstration of inflating a liferaft from Ocean Safety. It is always fun to see a liferaft inflate.

The final session was on Safeguarding and the changes that have happened over the last year.

2100 hrs

Arrived back in Devon. Drove the coast road, heavy traffic.

All times are UTC.


Sunrise: 0725 hrs Sunset: 1731 hrs


Weather: The shipping forecast issued by the Met Office, on behalf of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, at 23:30 (UTC) on Sat 10 Feb 2024 for the period 00:00 (UTC) on Sun 11 Feb 2024 to 00:00 (UTC) on Mon 12 Feb 2024 .

Dover, Wight

Cyclonic becoming west, 3 to 5, occasionally 6 in Wight. Slight or moderate, occasionally smooth in north Dover and rough in west Wight. Showers. Good, occasionally moderate

Synoptic Chart 11/02/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 11/02/2024


10/02/2024

OYT Training Weekend - Day 1

Saturday 10th February 2024

0500 hrs

Jumped in the car for the early morning drive to Gosport and the annual OYT training weekend. Always a good time to catch up with Sea Staff and get up to date with things. Thankfully, my First Aid at Sea was still in date so that was not my top proprity.

0830 hrs

Arrived at Gosport Cruising Club to sign in and start the day then spotted one of the Navy's aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth (R08)

HMS QEII

HMS Queen Elizabeth (R08) at Portsmouth

0930 hrs

Introduction to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

One of many talks I have attended on the subject, but with particular emphasis on Refugees. Fascinating to hear somebody talk with real life experience and not what you read in the press.

1400 hrs

Mental Wellbeing

A mental health talk with a difference, how to look after yourself rather than what to look out for in others.

1900 hrs

Mark, the CEO, gave his summary of last year. His always a very engaging speaker and a joy to listen to.

Most people stayed for dinner and drinks at the bar where we caught up with each other's news, swapped stories and looked forward to the new sailing season.

All times are UTC.


Sunrise: 0736 hrs Sunset: 1721 hrs


Weather: The shipping forecast issued by the Met Office, on behalf of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, at 23:30 (UTC) on Fri 9 Feb 2024 for the period 00:00 (UTC) on Sat 10 Feb 2024 to 00:00 (UTC) on Sun 11 Feb 2024 .

Wight, Portland, Plymouth

Southwest 4 to 6, becoming cyclonic 5 to 7 later, occasionally gale 8 later in Plymouth. Moderate or rough, but slight or moderate in Wight, becoming very rough or high later in Plymouth. Showers. Good, occasionally moderate.

Synoptic Chart 10/02/2024

© Met Office Synoptic Chart 10/02/2024


01/01/2024

Plans for 2024

Monday 1st January 2024

With the boat being on the hard for almost two years 2024 really does need to be one that I get some sailing on Aphrodite.

At the beginning of each year I sit down and plan what I want to do on the boat. Looking back at the last few years, little has run to plan. Let's see if 2024 bucks that trend. There are a few trips that keep popping into my head.

The First is a 'Not the Jester' trip to Baltimore, Ireland.

Proposed trip to Baltimore, Ireland.

A return trip to the Ile d'Ouessant, Ushant for the hard of hearing, in Brittany, now we have sorted out how to move between parallel universes after the disaster that is Brexit – which means I will need to visit a port of entry on arrival and departure in France. The final big trip will be a trip to the Channel Islands.

I've made my usual commitment to the Ocean Youth Trust and a delivery or two might come along. There is always the 'Elephant in the Room' my Yachtmaster exam!

Something that I am considering keeping Aphrodite afloat over the winter and get a bit of sailing in, there is always the option of diving into a marina if there are storms forecast.