Exploring the river Crouch, Sailing around Britain 2014

Date posted: 17 May 2014

Sailing days 20, 21 and 22. Thursday 15th to Saturday the 17th of May. Well the anticipated high arrived, so early on Thursday morning, whilst we were on anchor in the river Roach, we were to be found stripped off in the tender polishing the sides of the boat. ( no photographs !)

We had to wait until twelve thirty for the tide to change to carry us up the river, once we set off we only had to unfurled the foresail and let the tiny breath of air and the tide carry us up to Burnham on Crouch, where we had been advised to moor up alongside the Royal Corinthian Yacht Clubs pontoon.

Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, Burnham on Crouch

Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, Burnham on Crouch

The distance was 2.2nm and it took us an hour! but a very pleasant hour.We managed to moor up and found Kate the club secretary who booked us in for the night. In the afternoon Sean and I went off to explore the village and get our hair cut.

I took the escapee ducks from the Royal Victoria Yacht Club, Victoria and Albert with me and they settled down quite well

I took the escapee ducks from the Royal Victoria Yacht Club, Victoria and Albert with me and they settled down quite well

At six thirty Robert Kirky joined us for dinner, now Robert was one of the first boat owners to register with Static Boat Holidays, his boat Sherpa is moored just off the Corinthian and we saw her for the first time. We had a very enjoyable evening with Robert, who once dinner was finished dragged us off for a quick pub crawl of Burnham on Crouch, eventually spending the night with us on Kantara.

Robert Kirky leading Sean and Viv astray

Robert Kirky leading Sean and Viv astray

On Friday morning Sean and I woke up bright and early because it was such a beautiful day, the light was amazing on the river Crouch, I even hula hooped for a bit on the pontoon.

hula hooping

 

We also took a walk along the riverside towards the marina, we walked past a number of large houseboats, one particularly caught my eye! I couldn’t help myself I knocked on Peter and Lynda’s door and mentioned my business. Well low and behold they had tried the boat bed and breakfast themselves a few years ago but without any real success, they were very interested in registering with us, and signed up straight away. So I shall look forward to seeing the boat on the site soon.

Which is just as well because we are booked out and certainly need more boats, I’m now getting booking inquiries with no boats available, which is frustrating.

At the appointed hour we headed off again further up the river, stopping at the refueling berth, for Sean to lose an arm and a leg. Then we gracefully glided the six miles up the river to North Fambridge, where we stopped on the pontoon by the sailing club as recommended by Brian Dalby the club Commodore. Who we had previously met in Dover and again in Ramsgate.

After mooring up we headed off to explore, my goodness its pretty here, salt marshes, countryside, old English pubs, you would never know that this was just an hour from London here.

This duck house is a replica of The Ferry Boat Inn

This duck house is a replica of The Ferry Boat Inn

 

Church North Fambridge

We found this quaint little church by just taking a detour up a footpath

This little cottage is for sale on the salt marshes only £125,000, no access at high tide!

This little cottage is for sale on the salt marshes only £125,000, no access at high tide!

 

Once we returned to the boat I spent a few hours on the business whilst Sean relaxed and looked further up the coast, mentally plotting our next few stops.

Brian and his wife Barbara stopped by and said hello, in the evening we headed off to explore the salt marshes in the opposite direction. Its very quiet in North Fambridge.

Saturday arrived with more fabulous weather, we spent an enjoyable morning chatting to people on the pontoon. I repaired the spray hood, which took me a number of hours.

Running repairs on the spray hood by Viv, who chatted to everyone as she worked

Running repairs on the spray hood by Viv, who chatted to everyone as she worked

We had been informed by Brian that on the pontoon, at the junction with the hammer head at certain points of the tide, Bass could be found literally jumping around in the foam. As I sat quietly sewing and chatting, I heard the repeated plop, plop of fish jumping. So I went over to check and sure enough there were bass jumping, sizable beasts! I called Sean, who immediately got out his rod, attached a spinner and dropped a line in.  It took him seven minutes to catch this one! It took me longer to gut and fillet it!

Sean caught this Bass on a spinner just to his left hand side of this pontoon at North Fambridge

Sean caught this Bass on a spinner just to his left hand side of this pontoon at North Fambridge

Sean had a great shower in the marina facilities, sadly my experience wasn’t matched as the ladies had no hot water! Grrr

After lunch we started walking up to the yacht haven, when a gentleman called Roger  pulled over and told us to jump in, Sean had been chatting to him earlier , he then drove us to the yacht haven  where they were having an open day, we said good buy to Brian and Barbara, found a post box ( these aren’t always easy to find!) and headed back to the pontoon to slip our lines and head off.

The water taxi driver, Patrick handed us our lines and varies people waved as we headed off again to our anchorage on the River Roach. This journey has been such an adventure, but made all the more memorable by some of the characters we have encounter on route,  the many kindnesses shown  and all the top tips given, about when its best to get to a certain point, so that the tide will carry you the rest of the way, where the best seal colony is and where to catch a Bass, where not to cut a mark, where you can cut across a shoal, the list is endless. Our Thanks to all the lovely people we have met, cheers!

Victoria and Albert enjoying sundowners on the river Crouch

Victoria and Albert enjoying sundowners on the river Crouch

 

 

 

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