Loch Eribol to Kinlochbervie Sailing around Britain 2014

Date posted: 7 July 2014

As Sean was getting ready to pull up the anchor this morning, he called me up, asking if I had my camera. Well what a beautiful image, mirror calm waters with a mountainous backdrop, stunning.

 

Mike helped Sean pull up the anchor, and we literally glided out of the Loch towards the sea, all of us in light shirts and sun glasses. We gleefully laughed and talked about spotting a whale today as we would be able to see the fins easily.

This went on for a few hours, then within minutes the sea state started to change and the wind picked up, I was the third watch on and I asked for the sails to be hoisted. Simon and Mike pulled out the main, but we elected to pull out only half the foresail. The wind literally went from zero to force five in ten minutes. Which enabled us to cruise towards Cape Wrath; Marian did the passage planning last night, and was in charge of operations today. There are only to Capes in England, the other being Cape Cornwall, this is where two oceans meet.

We came round Cape Wrath straight into wind and a local north bound Eddy…weather and sea right on our nose

 

As we approached the Wrath joining the North Sea, and the North Atlantic, the wind was coming from the south, so as soon as we rounded the Cape, we had to take the sails in, the sea became really lumpy as we went through the over falls. Just off to our starboard side we saw another yacht, and were just about to call him up as we had noticed that he was trailing his foresail in the water; but as we got out our binoculars we saw him pulling the sail out of the water. But we did call him up a little later, when we thought he was losing his sail again, this as it transpires was Sirona, which we later rafted up against.

 

 

Sometimes you have to that the rough with the smooth! This was us ploughing through the waves off Cape Wrath

The journey down the west coast towards Kinlochbervie was very unpleasant with wind and tide against us. We had calculated that we would have six hours of tide with us, but as you come round the Cape, there is a localised tide coming in the opposite direction when you are close to the shore. If we had gone further offshore we would have been running with the tide, but having spoken to Simon, apparently he had equally as bad a journey, irrespective of the tidal flow.

 

The entrance into the loch was well hidden, it was literally as you were aiming at the cliff that the entrance became visible. This must have been such a safe harbour in days gone by.

The hidden entrance to Kinlochbervie…very well disguised.

The visitor’s pontoon was full, so we rafted up to another yacht, the gentleman was the man that passed us at the Cape. We decided to refuel whilst we were here, so then moved the boat over to the fueling pontoon. The man in charge of the fueling berth, then popped round to see us and asked if we were happy with the fuel. I wondered why, and cautiously said yes, at which point there was an awkward moment or two of silence. So I then wondered if he had just popped by for a bit of conversation, after all its a bit quiet here, so I engaged him in a bit of banter. Then he asked if we like fish, which I said I do, so he offered me a Hake, so under instruction I got a plastic bag and followed him, he then discovered that we had invited the man sailing with his son for dinner, so he say’s well you better have two. At this point I’m thinking there has to be a catch! but there was no catch I got two Hake and I thanked him with a bottle of red.

Viv filleting two massive Hake on the pontoon

Simon and Finn joined us for fish curry at 6.30, what a lovely evening we had with these two young men. Finn told us that he had been sailing since he was only four weeks old, and currently they are having a six week trip together, they certainly seemed a happy pair. Finn told us some lovely jokes from his Beano magazine and then played Jenga with Marian and I. Dad swapped stories with the fellow sailors on board, and passage plans for tomorrow were swapped.

Simon and Finn who are having a six week sailing holiday on Sirona

 

Apparently Simon and Finn have followed us up from Inverness, stopping at all the same places we have. Now considering there are three ex police officers on board, our powers of observation are obviously terrible. But now that we have made contact we will meet up again tomorrow at Lock Inver.

 

 

 

The Hake transformed into curry!

The view from the pontoon in Kinlochverbie

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