At the Quay
Hurst Point Lighthouse
I thought the boat would dry out at Keyhaven Quay, but there were a few inches of water under the keels. ‘Ladybird’ lay beside the Quay until this morning when I set off at 1045. The Quay was becoming a hive of activity. A crab boat arrived with a catch and a large yacht was about to be launched with the aid of a mobile crane. On the way out of the Harbour my chart GPS confirmed the course within the confines of the channel marked with starboard and port hand buoys. There was nothing to it really; my fears of Keyhaven were all in the mind. The practical working of the event was commonsense.
When the boat was clear of the Harbour I made full sail to combat the incoming tide around Hurst Point. I took a course fairly close to the Lighthouse where the water was astonishingly deep, but a bit further along the depth was only four meters. It was a reach along the shore before heading for the North Head Buoy from where I took the departure on a heading of 261 degrees for Poole Bar Buoy No. 1 sixteen miles away. I needed the engine as far as the Buoy, but from there on the tide eased and the wind backed to give us a run with the jib poled out.
Several yachts were all taking the same route. The sun was shining and the air was warm. The Autohelm managed to steer the course while I had lunch which consisted of a Cornish pasty I had bought at Milton earlier in the morning. As the afternoon wore on the wind petered out and it became an engine job. Getting into Poole required a three-quarter throttle and I only just manage to be clear of the chain ferry which continued remorselessly for the western jetty. At this point a cloudburst made everything soaking. South Deep seemed the best option for an anchorage which I found near other yachts at Goathorn Point. In the event this was not the best spot because the evening forecast predicted a Force 7 from the NE. I was reminded of my experience in Chichester of East Head.
I just think I’m going to have a rough night.