Friday, 21 August 2015

Tuesday - Portavadie to Largs

Alice and I investigated the new Spa facilities at the marina - pretty amazing, have a look at their website here.

Found some great cards in the shop as well, including this one from Emma Ball

The day started with a good F4 steady breeze from the north west so we crossed Loch Fyne to the western shore close to this scallop dredger - a classic fishing boat shape.
Alice took the helm as we crossed then we ran down Loch Fyne to the Cock of Arran
Then headed east to the southern tip of the Isle of Bute, for a time escorted by a single porpoise which played around the boat, to Glencallum Bay where we anchored at the head of the bay and went for a swim.
As we left we had an argument with some rocks - my fault, I knew they were there, well not quite where they were. However we just touched the keels and then reversed off. No damage done but a salutary lesson not to get too cocky.

Great sail back to Largs and and a sunset to finish the day
All in all a great few days sailing, averaging 25 miles a day and a lot of it was sailing. We were blessed by the weather. Alice enjoyed her first 'big' boat sailing adventure and got in some wild swimming as well.
Alice headed off the next day and I spent a day doing inside jobs on the boat as the morning sun soon left us and the rain set in for the day.
I left the next day and had a long but easy drive home.
A great trip made better by a great boat to sail, thanks Dylan, and thank you Jane.
You can see Dylan's latest exploits here

Monday, 17 August 2015

Monday - Port Bannatyne to Portavadie

An amazing day weatherwise, lots of sun winds only F1or F2 or just calm.
Caught some mackerel as we started up the East Kyle and Alice learned to gut her first fish.

We anchored in Loch Riddon and ate the fish after Alice had another swim - avoiding the jelly fish, of which there are plenty.
The wind died away after lunch so we ended up motoring most of the way to Portavadie.
This place is as strange as ever, but I just had to show Alice. See their website here

Sunday - Loch Goil to Port Bannatyne

Alice got up before breakfast and went for another swim - she is a very hardy chap!
It did mean that we could have a cooked breakfast.

We headed out down Loch Goil and Loch Long on the engine and then round to Port Bannatyne. It was along days sail and motor but the weather was lovely. 
We saw a large piece of  aircraft carrier being towed down the Clyde by tug, headed for Rosyth.
As we arrived the boat next door had bagpipe music blasting out, so we were piped into our berth.
Port Bannatyne is still the same although they have taken away the old boats in the parking spaces and put up some lovely flower baskets.
I cooked a tasty stew for us, though I say so myself.

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Saturday - Rhu Marina to Loch Goil

Rain again, and I'm sure they promised a fine day! There was sunshine too.
Sailed round from Rhu spotting a rather nice yacht called Drum out on the water,
and then up Loch Long past lots of mysterious buildings guarded by patrol boats. Alice and I were entranced by a family of Porpoises that played around the boat for five minutes or so as we turned from Loch Long into Loch Goil.
Then slowly sailed up to Lochgoilhead only to discover all the visitors moorings were full.
Turned back down the Loch to Carrick Castle but the two visitors moorings there were full so decided to anchor. A few minutes after dropping the anchor we were hailed from the shore. A very nice man, with a couple of GSDs said we could use his mooring for the night - for free. Thank you very much sir.
Alice swam that evening in the Loch. Both exhausted so in bed early- didn't wake up til 9 the next morning!
This was the view from the hatch that evening - magic.

Friday, 14 August 2015

Friday - a contrasting day weatherwise

The weather changed this morning but we have decided to head off on an adventure. First destination is Rhu Marina. Forecast F1/F2 with rain later.
So some sailing but having to work our way up the Firth as wind from the north. Eventually resort to the trusty engine and soon find the rain.
Passed by the Waverley as it did its rounds of the Clyde
Still there are lots or porpoises, birds and the odd seal. Arrived in Rhu about 7pm. 
Boys in the marina office very pleasant and they recommend the fish and chips from the cafe on site! Wow Alice and I got the last two portions and it was excellent. Fish delicious and full of flavour, chips light and crispy. Only on Friday nights and a limited number of portions available - worth a visit, definitely a treat. Cafe Rhu
Drying out now and looking forward to a good night's sleep.

August - back on the boat

Arrived today in blazing sunshine at midday. A couple of hours to get Harmony straight before Alice arrived.
Straight out on the water to drift and motor to Millport Bay on Cumbrae so that Alice could go for a swim.

Back in Largs for a quick supper then off to sleep