Trip on Quartette starting 2014-12-20 in BSAFeb15

Sailing Report 20th-21st December 2014 (Jane’s Xmas Party Trip)

Phoenix Yacht ‘Quartette’ Westerly Oceanquest 35, Skipper Phil Steele, Mate Bob Buchanan, Jane Coombes and Geoff Louch, (Becky Goddard absent).

It is sad to report that Becky was unable to enjoy this trip because she was unwell which must be an understatement because for her to miss the party trip of the year she must have been seriously ill. Perhaps the strain of being treasurer is taking its toll.

The crew arrived on the Friday evening as normal and started with the traditional Christmas meal of all you can eat at the Great Wall Chinese Restaurant. This was a followed up by a quiet drink in the local hostelry of Wetherspoons for their traditional seasonal ales enjoying the Christmas lights on the way. Surprisingly few boats were decorated with lights in the marinaMap.

The weather forecast promised a good day sail in strong winds W-SW F5-7 and Gale 8 later on in the day, outlook looked similar. We agreed that Yarmouth was intended and set off once the boat was ready. Good progress was made with increasing wind but favourable tides until 14:30.The progress was hard going with the reefed boat and after 3 hours of sailing the prospect of tacking with a turning tide was in danger of spoiling a good sail so far.

Bob suggested West CowesMap and a little Christmas shopping and viewing the sites and festive lights so off we went to the Island Sailing Club bar sitting outside on the balcony instead of by the fire which was not understood by the bar staff. We had been sitting outside on a boat so why not in the club. We enjoyed the dusk watching the water flatten in the falling wind.

Back on board we continued with the mulled wine and snacks whilst decorating the main cabin before sitting down to a roast dinner followed by mince pies and cream, port and cheese. During the night and early morning the wind howled in the rigging.

We had decided a leisurely start the next day leaving after an early lunch so some serious Christmas shopping was pursued by the crew. We sailed on both main and Genoa for a time, gybing to the outer Swashway reducing to foresail only. To make more of the day Bob diverted us around to the main channel entrance to make more of a sail of it.

We moored back at HaslarMap before dark and were able to reflect that the weather was almost identical to the previous Xmas trip except we did not have the driving rain during the clean up.

Haslar Marina  50.7908,-1.1171
West Cowes  50.7606,-1.2928
Haslar Marina  50.7908,-1.1171