The plan was to depart Ramsgate on the 12th August 2016 – 05.00 BST, Bound for Lowestoft. The last forecast for our sea area the night before was SW or W 4-5, occasionally 6 in the North. We were south of that sea area, but 4-5 occasionally 6 was the same as the last adventure – the key difference we would be that we would have the wind beam on the beam or across the quarter. So in the morning the question was do we go or do we stay. If we stay that lovely harbour master is going to want us to move further in from our easy berth to slip out when we want, if we go it could be windy. And just to add a further dimension the actual wind observations were showing a hint of North in that west …. mmmm. All this pondering was taking time – a check of the offshore forecast confirmed west or south west … the decision was made to go – and any hint of that North we would return and take our chances on the new berth.
The wind was 3-4 and Westerly, we had one reef in, and everything had been double checked the night before, the sails went up without event and we were on passage. The wind did pick up to force 6 at times, but across the quarter it was nothing like the last passage, it got us across the Thames without any problems, It then dropped which meant we were going to arrive in darkness at Lowestoft – it was our first entrance in darkness this year and we were naturally apprehensive with the sand banks near the entrance but we made it through with a sigh of relief. Next we had to find the berth we had pre-booked ….. mmm someone was in it not good, and motor boat at that. Anyway the owners of another boat helped us to a vacant berth and we were safe – in the general chit chat they said to make the most of the berth as apparently Hamilton dock is only going to be for commercial craft next year ….. those darned windcats and wind farms !!!!
We are going to have a few days here and chill … not too far for home to have some time and then wait for some good weather.
On a slightly different note we were actually able to send some digital data via the International Space Station which then repeated it to another land station which in-turn reported it on google maps – having established the infrastructure we can potentially have either a keyboard or voice chat with the guys and girls up there …. bit late for Major Tim 🙂