Hot summer sailing continues

DSC_0449Back down to Poole for three nights on board for more glorious summer weather. I’ve never known so much sun and just pure heat. I love it, though others complain. First night anchored off Redhorn Quay. Spent ages trying to get everything quiet. The burgee flutters. The shrouds hum in the slightest wind. The halyards tap against the mast. It drives you mad in the middle of the night. I stopped everything except a mysterious clunking during the night. In the morning I discovered the dinghy’s painter was hooked under the boarding ladder, and it kept bouncing it up and down.

The next two nights I anchored off Shipstal Point, one night in company of a lovely Bayraider Expedition owned by Charles and Anne, I think. Hope I got the names right. They had two children on board who slept in the cabin. The adults slept under a cockpit tent. I meant to watch how easy it was to erect, but I was distracted for a moment by another boat arriving. When I looked back, it was up, so must have been easy.

Shipstal is sheltered and those two nights are blissfully silent. Nightjars churring all night and the black headed gulls waking everyone at sunrise with a most discordant dawn chorus.

Some good sailing, but a lot of no wind at all. I have been practicing sculling with a single oar over the stern of the dinghy, and I am getting reasonably competent at it. It is much slower than rowing, but good for manoeuvring between other boats, and you can look where you are going.

One useful discovery was an additional function for the boom gallows. I can haul the boom right up, so that I can stand up in the cockpit. However, the boom bangs about in the swell. I found that if I split the main sheet either side of the gallows and pull it tight it holds everything still.

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Peace at anchor, plus room to move around. Then I could concentrate on soaking up sunshine and building up my vitamin D levels.

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I spent some time on Brownsea Island, sampling National Trust sausage rolls and dodging the hordes of Brownies and Rainbows, who were there to learn about Baden-Powell. There were hundreds of them. Lining up to have their photos taken with B-p’s statue, although they seemed very vague as to who he was.

When anchored in shallow water, I got out to scrape the bottom of the boat with a cheap garden hoe, which works brilliantly. I think my anti foul is past its best, so weed and barnacles are growing on it. Hoping for more good weather for the rest of the summer.

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