Looking NE up the Chichester Cannel
‘Ladybird’ and I arrived at East Head, Chichester Harbour on Tuesday, 8th June at 1440. We have been here ever since. This will be our second full day. I had hoped to sail today for another anchorage or marina in the Solent, but the wind is rather too strong for comfortable sailing. The Solent Coastguard on VHF channel 23 mentioned the NE wind of 3 to 4 was to increase to 5 or 7. When a forecast of 7 is mentioned, my policy is to remain where I am. Even if there is a forecast of Force 6 I prefer not to sail. Both the boat and I can manage under those conditions, but there is always a possibility that the forecasters could have underestimated the wind strength.
Where I am is probably not the best of places to be, as the Chichester Channel runs in a north-easterly direction and the boat is a little exposed. On the other hand the holding ground is good and there’s only a mile or so for the waves to build up. I have the full range of chain out and my bower anchor is ready for immediate deployment. I have fully reefed the mainsail, for action if need be. In fact, I feel quite comfortable, especially as the tide is ebbing, which has flattened the waves. (See photo.)
What do I do when confined to the cabin? Well, I have plenty of reading matter, the radio for local and national programmes, and of course, the laptop which has 24 hour access to the Internet, thanks to T-mobile. There are always those things to attend to in connection with the boat like checking the anchor, to make sure she is not dragging, doing the housework, cooking a meal, preparing a passage plan for the next day. I could do with some more sleep, as I was up twice in the night for routine matters.