16 May 2019 – Passage from the Azores to Gosport – a Cornish pitstop (er… pasty stop)


May 16th, 2019


North Atlantic 2017 – 2019, Ocean passages

Written by

Richard Farrington

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By Richard. Posted on May 16th, 2019 in North Atlantic 2017 – 2019, Ocean passages.

50:09N 005:04W

Sorry this is a bit late… we’ve been in the pub!

We reached Falmouth at 2300 last night after an interesting sail north from the Scillies, leaving Wolf Rock to starboard, sneaking into Mounts Bay past Mousehole and then tacking across towards the Lizard.  The wind and sea state gradually improved during the day and as we closed Gwennap Head we found some favourable tides taking us east.  We arrived off the Lizard just as the tide turned against us, dinner was pretty much ready and HMS SCOTT came over the horizon.  Despite the obvious distractions, I couldn’t resist calling them up – a Devonport Flotilla ship as the first vessel we saw in home waters – now driven by James Baker, a friend, key figure in the RNSA and a highly competent yachtsman.  They came close by as we hurtled towards the famous promontory and the sun was setting – a poignant moment for me – many thanks to the team aboard SCOTT.  We passed a few hundred yards from the impressive rocks underneath the lighthouse in almost flat seas as the last of the evening light faded and by the time we were clear, it was dark.

We motored the rest of the way into Falmouth and came alongside at the Visitors Marina just to the west of the dockyard. A celebratory dram, then bed!

Today we spent a fair bit of time clearing Customs and Immigration, in part due to our multinational crew, but mainly because you clear in over the phone and then send an email with a crewlist to someone in Exeter, who may or may not have other things to do.  Still, the chaps at the Border Agency were very pleasant and it gave us time to clean ship and do some routine maintenance before stepping ashore for a fine pint of Tribute ale at the Chain Locker and then a pasty, before a walk to Penryn to stretch some legs and buy some engine oil.  On our return, we decided that our American crewman Dave, needed initiating into the scone and clotted cream ritual and we now have enough pasties and scones to cover the remaining 160nm back to Portsmouth.

The wind remains resolutely in the east and quite fresh, but the forecast is for it to ease overnight before backing into the north (eventually).  So this evening we are sitting on a buoy off St Mawes, watching the local evening racing, cooking some supper and planning to run a Film Night (complete with popcorn) before setting sail around midnight.  We are expecting to cover much of the passage to Portsmouth under engine.

Morale is jolly high and we have no defects!

Richard, Peter and Dave