Thursday, June 03, 2010

Thursday 3rd June

After a sleepless night at the Rice and Cole pontoon I made breakfast at 0510 and listened to the forecast at 0520 which was for E or NE 3 or 4, occasionally 5. I left the pontoon with the engine running at 0550. To make the best use of the ebb I motor-sailed to a point NE of the Whitaker Beacon, then ran before the wind as far as the SW Barrow cardinal buoy. From there I brought boat onto wind for the Shivering Sand Towers, then skirted around the wind farm at S Girdler Beacon. There a watch ship monitored my progress. By that time the tide was making. A course from there was downwind towards the Whitstable Street red can buoy. My chart was out of date, showing the Buoy as a N cardinal. This buoy is the waypoint for the River Swale, which at first runs in SW direction - fortunately downwind. My map GPS was very useful for following the deepwater channel, of which there’s a good 5 nautical miles to the first of the moorings at Harty Ferry, where I’m intending to spend the night. It’s a little bumpy with the ebb against wind, but hopefully at nightfall the wind will ease.

The forecast for tomorrow is E or NE, becoming variable 3 to 5, which means I could have a testing time to make it to Ramsgate. We’ll see.

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