Trip on Nashira starting 2018-08-30 in BSASep18

Plymouth/ Tréguier/ Plymouth, Aug 30 – Sept 3 – report by Alex Barry.

Crew: Alan Howells, skipper, Jeff Birkin, Don Hirst, Alex Barry, Mario Vurovec and Jelena Belec

(All times given in UK time)

Our boat was a temporary addition to Richard’s fleet as a replacement for the damaged ‘Phoebe’, a Bavaria 36 cruiser,’ Nashira’, of more modern vintage than Cleo or Cherry B. She appeared much bigger than the normal Bavaria 36 – lots of freeboard and cavernous interior although the lack of fiddles internally caused speculation as to its practicality in rough weather.

We slippedMap at 19:15 Thursday. A lovely evening apart from an almost total absence of wind, except an occasional very light following wind which might have given us 2 knots if we had the time. This situation persisted all the way across and we ran on the engine the whole way. This was the first time in ca 50 Channel crossings the skipper had experienced this. We were extremely grateful for the autohelm which allowed the watch to sit chatting, watching the lights of Eddystone and Start Point and the numerous dolphins which raced alongside leaving trails of white bubbles under the water. The East/ West shipping route provided opportunities to take sights on ships and identify lights. We met a few trawlers which forced a change of course at times.

Skipper used traditional navigation – running a plot with some difficulty from an overreading log. Dipping distance and bearing to Start Point and sounding for edge of Hurd Deep got us a to a point where Les Héaux de Brehat lighthouse and Sept Isles were visible and navigation using them, Plougrescant Church and Isle Tome brought us to a point a little uptide of the difficult to see entrance to Port BlancMap which duly appeared after motoring a little west. Picking up Le Voleur lighthouse allowed an approach on a compass bearing. We moored in the bay and had a pleasant few hours in sunshine, watching the French dinghy sailing, swimming and lunching.

We left on a leading line until clear of hazards then 030° at first then 045°, finally picking up a bearing on Les Héaux which kept us clear of the rocks along the coast and led to Basse Crublent buoy. At this point the tide was running strongly east and attention was required not to be pushed off course. Pilotage up the river to Tréguier Mapwas a delight in the evening sunshine on the still river, looking at the delightful houses above the river banks and the deep pools at the bends. We moored at 20:20 between the pontoons into the tidal stream.

Saturday was a nice day in Tréguier, shopping, visiting the cathedral and enjoying beers in the sunshine, followed by meal out, memorable delicacies being fish soup and duck. For the first time Alan had seen in many years, there was a sizeable coaster moored at the commercial quay in Tréguier and much speculation about how it might have managed a particularly tight, and narrow turn in the river.

We moved berth at high tide on Sunday to moor against the ebbing tide and to allow us to leave at 12:20 with the tide and motored to Pen ar Guézec buoy where we were able to sail a nice beam reach in a force 3 for a few hours until it died. We managed fixes off Les Héaux de Brehat lighthouse and Plougrescant Church until these disappeared from sight. Ran plot for Plymouth and a long overcast night followed under engine with 3 hour watches. Eventually picked up Start Point rising for a fix then corrected course for Plymouth and anchored at 07:00 in CawsandMap where some went ashore in the dinghy and others swam using the drop down stern platform and ladder.

Alan provided yet another fine and greatly appreciated meal.

Finally a breeze enabled us to sail off the anchor and Jeff led gybing practice across the Sound. This required a bit of concentration due to the boat’s double main sheeting. Fuel and handover. Somewhat a disappointment in terms of sailing time, but nevertheless an enjoyable cruise with some good night hour practice, the delights on being in Brittany and good company.

Plymouth  50.3648,-4.1322
Port Blanc, Brittany  48.8392,-3.3111
Tréguier  48.7872,-3.2215
Cawsand  50.3314,-4.1881