Trip on Crack-on starting 2011-06-18 in BSA-extraJuly11
South Coast Sailing 18 & 19 June 2011 –report by Bob Buchanan
Name of boat. ‘Crack On’, Sadler 25
We met at Portland marina on the Friday night to get the boat ready to take her over to Southampton, as we were entered in the Round the Island race the following week.
After breakfast in a nearby café, we came back and looked at the weather forecast in the marina office. It was 6 to 7 occasionally 8 south westerly.
We had to get to the Needles sometime after 19.00hrs to get the east going tide so we decided to leave at midday. We left Portland in a force 6 with just the number two Genoa up; we had also made sandwiches and taken a flask of hot water to make soup on the way.
By 17.00hrs we were well into a force 7 and the waves were getting very high. We were taking the tiller for about an hour each to give one another a rest. It was then the G.P.S told us to gybe to take us on course to the Needles fairway buoy.
A couple of hours later the wind had picked up even more and the waves were even higher. Our first little scare came when we were at the bottom of one wave and another came crashing down on us from our port side, I ended up on the cockpit floor still holding the tiller, but Becky was still sitting in the same place holding on with everything she could catch hold of and looking like a drowned rat.
The only two other times we had a bit of a scare were when we came down a wave and the boat went to starboard getting us sideways to the waves, we ended up with the boat being swamped with water and us lying in it and looking up at the sky, both times we wondered which way the boat would end up but both times she just came up ok and carried on sailing. Our depth gauge was showing at times as low as 10mts and as high as 22mts, the G.P.S was showing speeds of less than 1knt up a wave and over 10knts going down them.
At about 21.00hrs we spotted the fairway buoy on our starboard side, exactly where we wanted to be. Things had died down a lot by now so we got the soup and sandwiches out, it felt good to get a bit of food and hot drink inside us.
We went through the Needles channel and headed for Yarmouth. We got in and tied up to a pontoon on our own as there was no one about to tell us were to go. It was 23.00hrs when we tied up and the first thing we did was torack open a can of beer, then Becky put a couple of cans of stew in the pot for supper.
That was the most arduous day’s sail we have ever had, due to the size of the waves and the strength of the wind. ‘Crack on’ seemed to take everything in her stride and just kept going.
The next day was very different, the wind had died down and the sun was out. We left Yarmouth about 11.00hrs and pulled up the number two genoa again, as we were just too tired to change the sails. We had a steady sail all the way up to Ocean Quay where she had a berth, ready for the Round the Island race the following week.