Well, as you may have read on the Clyde posting Ros and I (RnR ) were unable to go to Scotland due to my mother becoming ill . She is still in hospital but we managed to sneak 5 good days sailing in the Solent / Poole Bay area.
We set out at midday on the 5th June hoping to catch the fly-pasts for the DDay commemorations but slight delay meant we missed that ...ah well...the important thing was that we had as little stress as possible. The wind was quite brisk so I wanted to reef the sail but unfortunately I had not threaded things properly when changing my mainsail so we had to make do with full sail. I decided not to bother with the foresail at all and in fact she sailed pretty well keeping up with larger overhauled yachts. So Yarmouth and hot showers were achieved with ease and a nice pub meal. Plenty of time next morning to wander around the town and lose Ros in a second hand book shop! Then down with the tide to the Needles via Alumn bay and then a glorious reach across the bay to Poole averaging 6 knots on a reefed main with full jenny. We were followed much of the way by a circling Hercules transport plane so we didnt miss all the action . Just inside the chain ferry entrance to Poole Harbour we picked up a mooring in Shell Bay where we had arranged to meet Bjorn and Mandy Sjoling for a beach BBQ with their Hymer camper van friends ....Bjorn had extensively kitted out his 26x in the past prior to taking it to Greece where is remains but he is now into Hymers and seems to be bringing all the club members vans up to speed.
Next morning it was a howling gale so we took Aranah into a marina and retired to Southampton and to see mum for a couple of days and then returned on the Sunday whereapon we again had a delightful sail back across Christchurch Bay largely on the autohelm , this time taking the inner route sneaking past Hurst Castle and proceeding up to Newton Creek, on the Isle of Wight . This is a National Trust wildlife protected area and we managed to get a really quiet mooring . Agreat nights sleep and the excitement of seals the next morning . With weather and wind unsuitable for sailing we bombed up to Cowes and the Medina river to tie up on the jetty of the Folly Inn for lunch then better wind in the afternoon took up to Ryde where our good friends took us in for showers and a slap up meal....(NB...the harbour master was not contactable).
Next morning the wind had flipped 180 deg so we had a broad reaching/ jibing sail all the way home to the Hamble...pity I hadnt brought my spinnaker! We both felt pleased to have made the most of the circumstances and weather.....hope others managed the same.
Aranah , 26M , 2005