While many cruises take us away from civilization, there is an alternative, especially in stormy weather … Theo Stocker presents the November 2021 issue of Yachting Monthly
The forecast was deteriorating as the impending arrival of the storm accelerated. Force 6, Force 7, no, Force 8 to arrive Saturday, Friday evening, no, Friday morning.
The heat wave in which we had bathed our way to the Isles of Scilly was decidedly over.
Our morning departure was abandoned in favor of a night passage.
The anchor chain clicked in the locker not too soon.
Off the islands, a long and powerful Atlantic swell foreshadowed a real storm.
Dark frontal clouds dominated the rear, muffling the sunset.
We ran east as darkness engulfed the stars and the wind built and built.
We surfed in front around the Lizard and tried our luck heading towards Salcombe.
On the safe side of the bar, the storm finally caught up with us two hours later, virtually shutting down the port for the next two days.
It was in 2018.
July 2021 saw the much more severe Storm Evert hit the islands, and Ken Endean was there to witness it all, nestled in a bay and dried out for a part.
Gusts of up to Force 10 appeared to originate from most cardinal points overnight, knocking drifting boats and onto rocks.
If you have to weather a storm in these exposed islands, or other anchorages for that matter, Ken’s observations of anchoring and mooring tactics that worked and did not work are worth reading. (see p42 of the last issue).
Continued below …
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While many cruises take us away from civilization, there is an alternative, especially if a storm arrives.
The British and Irish coasts are dotted with maritime towns in the heart of which it is possible to navigate (p22 of the last issue).
If restaurants, concert halls, Roman fortifications, cobblestone streets and bustling nightlife are more appealing than just riding at anchor, a city sailing getaway might be the perfect solution.
And at the end of the evening, the only taxiing is to go back down to the quay where your home is ready and waiting for you.