By Rod & Margaret Deacon
5th June and 0830 lock out straight to Swansea via Nash Passage, blue water in one tide or nearly. Keeping close to starboard in the shallow river the tide’s rising & Tawe lock calls, enough water now. Moored up, a trip to a Dylan Thomas Theatre play. A bus trip to Burry Port. We are on holiday.
Saturday to Milford avoids the Castlemartin guns. Short stop on Dale visitor buoy then on up the Haven & we are behind Milford marinas high walls. The sun is hot so rig extra shade. Safety first, lots of fog this year & we don’t have radar so an AIS transponder is bought from Tim, who installs it.
We do a spot of rock hopping to nearby bird sanctuaries & anchor in noisy south Skomer inlet and watch comical Puffins returning with food for chicks.
Good AIS investment it’s a foggy trip across the Irish sea. At Arklow, beyond the stone entrance walls a 24hr access mooring pontoon can accommodate a lot of boats & there’s power on shore. It rained, well it’s not called The Emerald Isle for nothing. The harbour has been gentrified & has an ALDI & nearby shopping mall but good ‘craic’ (& Guiness) over the bridge at local pubs.
Next stop Greystones, now a ‘proper’ marina plus blocks of flats, not just portacabin toilets. The coast path to Bray is blocked by rockfalls, so it’s a bus ride. The driver seeing our OAP passes waves us aboard no charge. We are lucky it’s the same driver coming back.
Never sailed into Malahide let’s go there, we sail in flat sea & sunshine. Just rounding the Nose of Howth a thick fog bank changes our plan, we turn left into Howth Marina. We are not negotiating a river channel to Malahide in fog. We did visit by train though, using the DART.
On the lawns at Howth there were bagpipe & drum bands competing. Huge noise and colour of Irish tartans.
Next stop is Ardglass in Northern Ireland – to be continued!