After being stuck in Aber Wrac’h for three days with N to NW winds of up to 25 knots we escaped at last with an overnight passage straight up to Plymouth. 118 miles in 18 hours we left at 1400 hrs. and arrived around about 07.30 the following morning. We were forecast a WNW of 8 to 12 Knots but it was back to NW again and 15 to 18 Knots true for most of the trip and then north 5< for the last 10 miles. With some swell and a short wave set on top, this made for so lively rolling right on the beam. Glad I made the preverbal 24hr stew before I left as it was just me up top with the crew retiring to her bunk for most of the trip.
The Pointe Du Raz and the Chenal Du Four were not as bad as expected with 10 – 15 kts only picking up to 22 kts on the way over from the Raz to Cameret. These were my big fears on the trip and approached with some trepidation, but with good planning for the tidal gates (30mins for the Raz at Brest +5½) we made it around without problems in the company of numerous other boats. Always good to know that others are using the same slot.
Penmarch and around to Poulguen was a different matter and is a long drawn-out headland on route to Benodet. Fun on the way out but needing careful planning and and on the advice of others a set of tide tables on the way back. There seems to be an inshore current running oneway and offshore the other. On the day we had to go with 15 Kts increasing to 25 Kts of wind over tide which made for a steep short sea. Not pleasant but we need to go to keep our slot open for the Raz, overnighting on anchor at Audierne just behind the harbour wall. The inside is taken up with mooring buoys.
All good fun with some 700 miles covered in all. If there’s interest there are more notes and suggestions which may be of interest to others contemplating a similar adventure.
Happy sailing Steve F