Sully to the Scillies - June 2010


Saturday June 19th - Falmouth to Helford

Sunday June 20th - Helford to Old Grimsby

Monday June 21st - Old Grimsby to Ganilly

Tuesday June 22nd - Ganilly to Gugh Cove

Wednesday June 23rd - Gugh Cove to St Marys Sound & back

Thursday June 24th - St Marys Sound to Helford

Friday June 25th - Helford to Falmouth

Saturday June 26th - Falmouth to Home

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Saturday June 19th

  • 09:30 Leave Cardiff in 2 big cars, lots of cake going down this year.
  • 10:45 Taunton Deane toilet stop. Weather 8/8 cloud. Radio report from Dunedin – All Blacks 42 Wales 9.
  • 12:45 Race Horse pub for lunch; good fare again. No nasty fatal RTAs en route this year
  • 14:15 Falmouth Marina, in sunshine. To Asdas: not charged for two bottles of drink smashed , but the food bill is uncannily just £274 per boat.
  • 17:00 Load the boats. Pogo seems OK, Polbream has a leak round the keel-bolt, (which commits them later to daily bilge-pumping ) and an oil-warning light on the engine console, delaying their departure until a Cornish Cruising mechanic has pronounced it safe.
  • 17:45 Away from Penryn under blue sky and sunshine, F3 Westerly. Start the tea and C’s cherry cake
  • 18:30 Round Pendennis and past 3 moored tankers for Helford; about 5kts under Genoa, wind NW F4 – 5
  • 19:00 Buoy 320 is taken (again) so we have to tie up to 341
  • 20:00 Beef casserole (RD) with potatoes and Merlot. Wind has died, estuary flat.
  • 20:30 Polbream arrives to raft up. Pleased to discover that Pogo SatNav has been fitted with a new chip that covers Falmouth to Bishop Rock.Some concern, C and MF both suffering from bronchitis.Several crew in their bunks by 23:00. Bit of a chill settled on the estuary, bright clear half-moon

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Sunday June 20th

  • 0630 cereals breakfast before 0730 away under diesel, sunny, but wind just F1-2
  • 0805 pass the Manacles, Polbream astern trying to get mainsail up. Time to change Pogo gas bottle already! Bacon rolls and tea
  • 0930 Clear the Lizard under bright sun. NE breeze too weak to be any use.
  • 1300 pass Wolf Rock. RAF chopper seen dangling its sonar in the sea. Breeze improved enough to get sails up, so motor-sail all the way to the Islands. Lunch - Tuna rolls and cupasoups. And cider.
  • 1630 reach New Grimsby. NO free moorings! Back out through heavy swells N of Tresco, to creep slowly into Old Grimsby, where there are several empty buoys. Idyllic scene, plus interesting heavy breaking swells sweeping in towards Northwethel from the N.
  • 1730 tie up, and get the tea and cherry cake out. Launch flubber 1800. Next mooring has a French boat, with bagpiper on board, but they flubber off to Tean to go crabbing, for their dinner presumably. There’s even a lobster pot tied on their stern.
  • Dinner: chicken with rice peppers tomatoes onions, wine & lager. C looking a bit wan, eats little, bed early.
  • 2000 flubber to shore to walk to New Inn, hear that MF also gone to bed early
  • 2200 back to boats, take photos of the sunset and glassy smooth water. Later, cards and cheese. Stars brilliant but air chilling down. Polbream planning on a visit to clinic in the morning with MF
  • 0345 woken by noise from the mainsail boom traveller shifting, as the tide changes.

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Monday June 21st

  • Dawn. Sunny dead calm morning. No sign of anyone collecting mooring fees Cereals and sausage rolls for breakfasts.
  • 0945 C and A to Tresco for a walk to Gimble Porth and back. Meanwhile the two flubbers visit St Helens
  • 1030 Mid morning tea and the last of the sponge cake. Polbream flubber goes off to St Mary’s with MF.
  • 1100 Cast off and make a slow passage via Crow Sound to St Mary’s for water. Very crowded in the pool, some shunting needed to get to the quay.
  • 1210 Pogo away from watering leaving Polbream boxed in at the quay.
  • 1215 See the Trinity House maintenance vessel picking up buoys
  • 1220 Cider and Ginsters cold pasties for lunch, en route to anchor in Watermill Cove 1250
  • 1310 G catches his first Pollock, but throws it back. Weather v. hot. Some crew sleep.
  • 1450 weigh anchor and leave Polbream to head to Great Ganilly anchorage. Polbream detours to St Mary’s to collect MF from the clinic.
  • 1530 drop anchor off Ganilly. Tea and Belgian cake.
  • 1600 Launch flubber and drive through weed for about 6 cables to a beach in St Martin’s Perpitch Bay. Someone spots topless sunbathers, but they also spot us. Make our way to the Daymark where we are stalked and pecked by a (ringed) pigeon.
  • 1730 make our way back to Pogo past curious seals. Joined 1800 by Polbream and have a debate about the merits of anchoring separately or rafting up. Beers all round under a hot sun, except MF who is on Erythromycin and steam inhalations instead. G dons Lidl flippers and goes for a swim; seals move away.
  • 1900 dinner of Spag Bol and tinned oranges, wine, and tea. Met forecast fair, winds F2-3
  • 2000 some crew off to 7 Stones pub. G resumes fishing: loses a Mackerel but gets a Pollock and a Wrasse.
  • 2100 cards cheese and pickled peppers on Polbream. Joined later by the 7 Stones team.
  • 2300 crews prepare to turn in. A. peeing off Pogo’s bow finds a seal surfacing and rolling about underneath. Ten minutes later same thing happens to K on Polbream; is this something local seals have learned to do? To be fair, where else can a seal get a hot shower in Atlantic waters ?
  • 2345 all abed, for a calm quiet night in another free anchorage.

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Tuesday June 22nd

  • 0740 all up to a hot glassy calm morning, for a slow lazy start. A crash heard during the night looks like it was a locker hatch falling shut. Full English Brek.
  • 1000 off to Great Ganilly for a walk. Found and retrieved a float, and a plastic bucket. Forage team have quite a few bramble scratches to show for the effort. Back to Pogo for more tea and Belgian cake. Pogo generously share some Welshcakes with Polbream crew when they return from Ganilly.
  • 1100 Polbream ups anchor and makes off to NW, en route to Gugh.
  • 1110 seals return to play around the Pogo flubber, before Pogo follows , finding a nice long port tack at 210 degrees past St Marys, then round to Gugh Cove entrance.
  • 1430 anchor in about 6m of water, under hot sun, next to a French yacht and near the motor yacht Mainframe a Nelson 38 carrying a blue ensign, with a crew member who’d studied Physics in Swansea and spotted Pogo’s red dragon flag. Hear a cuckoo calling on St. Agnes, and see purple jellyfish everywhere.
  • 1645 Flubber to shore to dump bin bags and get drinks at the Turks Head. Causeway is dry, so walk around the S. of Gugh until 1800 returning to Pogo Tide has dropped to 3.7m. Chocolate brownies & tea followed by a doze. Wake to radio news from South Africa – France has been knocked out of the World Cup ( Portugal already knocked out by NZ yesterday)
  • 1950 Tide down to 3.2m; make an unpleasant trip to a splashy landing on shore. Pear Rattler is £3 a pint in the Turks; meals include: cod & chips, sausage & mash, cottage pie, steak & chips, and Bream. No puddings.
  • 2150 back to the boats; tide now rising from a low of 1.7m at 2050. Note one yacht anchored too near the causeway looks to be slightly aground. Note fishing boat LT61 enter the outer cove to anchor.
  • 2340 Tide now 4.3m. Boat rolling steadily, causeway covered. Some concern that yacht “Panacea” ahead is a bit close when it swings on its anchor. All in bed by 12.

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Wednesday June 23rd

  • 0415 woken briefly by rolling, despite the Causeway being uncovered.
  • 0730 all up to a hot sunny morning. Channel 77 chat with Polbream confirms they’ve gone off the idea of a night sail back to Helford. Take time for a full brek. ( Note that yacht ‘Mainframe’s blue ensign is defaced with three feathers and a crown)
  • 0930 away under diesel. Breeze only about F2
  • 1015 found an empty mooring in otherwise crowded St. Marys. Count 215 craft in the pool including 42 yachts and the Scillonian. Polbream later leaving Gugh Cove, arrives as Pogo crew leave for the showers. 15 minute queue; chance to chat to a crew from Eire, who reckon “Magners Irish” actually comes from tanks in Hereford. Shopping. S gets the new Scillies Pilot book. A mix of Polbream and Pogo crew grace the Atlantic for a while.
  • 1320 rejoin Pogo, Polbream and Whealgo ( 46-foot skippered charter) at the quay for watering.
  • 1400 Pogo away to the East; hot sun now needing Factor 50. Flubber is slowly leaking. Back up the transit to Old Grimsby moorings by 1430. Lunch – Tuna mayo rolls, crisps, bananas, tea and cider.
  • 1520 Bit of a mending-frenzy on the leaking flubber valve. Note yacht ‘Eclipse’ from Barry Yacht Club moored nearby. About a dozen yachts are anchored in St. Helens pool. Flubber fixed by cannibalizing the foot-pump for the needed spare parts, tested OK at 1600. Welsh cakes, then dozing
  • 1640 Polbream arrives to raft-up.
  • 1700 Visit to Tresco for half-hour. Flubber still softening, and temporarily disappears back onto Pogo. C and A wait for a pick up, give up, go for a walk, come back to an empty jetty – turns out the flubber has been and gone again. 1800 Finally back on Pogo and get the flubber on board.
  • 1900 Polbream escapes to a vacated mooring just ahead of incoming French yachts.
  • 1930 Chicken Madras, with red onions and rice, Merlot, and tinned pears.
  • 2030 drinkers off to New Inn, in relays in the Polbream flubber. Darts match in the pub; honourable draw. Consensus reached for a daysail back to Helford
  • 2340 back to boats in bright moonlight, with a meteor seen. Two French boats about 4 cables off having a party, noise carrying across the water clearly.

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Thursday June 24th

  • 0500 awake, so take the chance to get some dawn photos
  • 0800 everyone up, sunny but cool. Solid tide running N taking jellyfish with it. Full brek again of sausage, beans, bacon, mushrooms, home-made bread and marmalade.
  • 0935 off round Men a Vaur back to Helford. Briefly try sailing with the F2-3 from the West, but soon back to motorsailing, 7kts at 2500 rpm. , course 090 degrees.
  • 1100 fruit cake and tea. Porpoises seen off to the N.
  • 1130 See the Scillonian passing to the S.
  • 1200 Seven Stone lightship to the N. , Wolf Rock 10 miles ahead. More porpoises around Sun through cloudy haze, sea very smooth, slight swell,
  • 1330 cheese and crackers, cuppasoups, ginger cake, tea and cider.
  • 1415 pass through an area busy with fishing boats to be avoided
  • 1600 tea and Welshcakes and Brownies
  • 1710 Leave Lizard to the N. Building work, cranes etc, visible on what looks like a new lifeboat slipway
  • 1730 a square-rigger off the S. picks up speed and disappears towards Falmouth
  • 1820 square rigger has turned into Coverack bay (to anchor?) Photos taken as we pass the Manacles. Minor crisis; discover the stern shower is running, turned on by accident somehow, and has been on long enough to drain the aft water tank. Forward tank still full, luckily
  • 1925 In Helford, find 320 occupied again so take 341. Many French boats in the moorings.
  • 2000 Chicken chasseur with white wine and veg. sauce and boiled spuds, with tinned peaches. Radio news that Italy is now also knocked out of the World Cup. Tennis match in Queens has gone to 138 games.
  • 2100 phone HRSC to make reservations for dinner tomorrow. Card school starts but with no cheese, only nuts, until 0010 . Clear night, another meteor seen. Bed 0030 in dead quiet (unlike last night)

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Friday June 25th

  • 0312 spoke too soon. Woken by French flubber passing. St Anthony’s Head foghorn heard.
  • 0730 all up to cool cloudy morning . Another full brek. Supplies holding up well.
  • 0900 sun now really hot, and the ferry-man catches us for a £17 mooring fee before we can shift to buoy 320. Learn that the French are here in strength for a handicap race back to Brittany this weekend.
  • 0930 flubber packed away. Breton boat passes by leaving the moorings, with a ceremonial bagpiper playing on deck. Can’t tell if it’s the same boat as we saw in Old Grimsby
  • 1000 diesel on for slow departure towards Falmouth, leaving Polbream to try and claim 320. So slow we get overtaken by a women’s gig crew ! Try sails up at the August Rock buoy, but the breeze dies slowly.
  • 1100 doing only about 2 to 3 kts. Time for fruit cake, tea and coffee, and watch an RN chopper dropping off and recovering a man from a navy tug to the S.
  • 1250 abandon sails. Motor up the Fal. Pass Whealgo. Pass the same cluster of Santas – “ bulk carriers that were moored in the Fal last year, but the Windsor Castle has a new partner, a dismasted 3-mast sailing ship.
  • 1300 tie up at N visitors pontoon for lunch, leftover cheese, crisps, peppers, cuppasoups, crackers, apples and bananas. Dull and overcast but warm.
  • 1400 off back to sea past Whealgo again. Pogo paused for a tiny moment on a mudbank, cutting a corner. (Low water was 1145). Pass the Coastguard ERV Anglia Princess off St. Mawes.
  • 1450 wind returns in strength so full sails up for the exit from the Fal . Big windshift in the bay leaves us on starboard tack at 190 degrees
  • 1600 fruit cake and tea before dropping sails to enter the Helford. At last manage to get onto 320. Joined soon by Polbream with bad news that a delay in the daily bilge-pumping has left G with a load of wet clothes
  • 1700 tea, general unwinding, visits to Ferryboat Inn, and HRSC for showers. Both boats festooned with towels like bunting.
  • 2020 local swans show they’re ready for their dinner, loitering round our stern. Off to HRSC for our dinner. Round of drinks, £12.75 food – Crab, Mushroom and bacon brioche, fishcakes, steak, chicken supreme, Liver & bacon, Pouting and chips. Lemon cheesecake, apple crumble, spotted dick
  • 2330 final flubber-loads back to the boats. Almost no breeze. Bright moon.

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Saturday June 26th

  • 0630 up to see glassy calm estuary. Crows noisy on shore. Start cleaning the boat 0700
  • 0800 off under diesel at 5 kts. Still glassy calm, hot sun. Tea and Belgian cake
  • 0950 tie up at refuelling pontoon
  • 1015 final unloading and refilling water tanks. 1100 leave marina
  • 1245 lunch at the Racehorse. News txt from home – All Blacks 29 Wales 10; improving!
  • 1450 Taunton Deane
  • 1640 Cardiff. Hot and sunny all day, been quite tough on the sleepers in the cars.

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