6 th to 13 th of August 2011 - Orkney Mainland again
|Helen and Andy
We had our usual leisurely start and motored across to Kirkwall where we were berthed on a pontoon by 0945. It was the Kirkwall Regatta, so lots of boats were going out to race in the harbour. The traditional Orkney Yole, slightly different to the Shetland Yoal in more ways than just the spelling, was one of the classes being raced.
In the afternoon we found the showers and laundrette and explored the town. We had a car hired for Monday and Tuesday so planned our itinery for the next few days. Of course we had to pay a visit to the most northerly distillery in Britain and we thought we should do this without the car. This was just as well as the tour included two rather large wee drams as well as a try of the whisky we eventually chose for the boat.
|HIGHLAND PARK DISTILLERY
|St MAGNUS CATHEDRAL KIRKWALL
|THE EARLS PALACE KIRKWALL
CHURCHILL BARRIER WITH WW1 WRECK
|TOMB OF THE EAGLES
|THE GREAT ESCAPE
|BROCH OF GURNESS
|BROUGH OF BIRSAY
|NESS OF BRODGAR (Hoy in the background)
Unfortunately once we had finished with the car the wind didn't improve. Tortuga left to pick up the mooring in Elwick Harbour and to wait for a weather window to go to Wick. We decided to stay in Kirkwall where we could be on a pontoon. We only had 2 day sails to get to Inverness via Wick. This, just as the wind went east. Wick is not a good harbour to enter in easterly winds. In addition all the safe harbours in the Moray Firth are either east facing or too shallow and we didn't fancy sailing the whole way to Inverness without diversionary ports. It looked like Sunday will be the next possible departure date. We spent some time carrying out boat chores: Servicing a few more winches, until we ran out of grease, washing the tender and putting it to bed for the winter and cleaning the forward heads thoroughly. Fortunately it became sunny so it was good for drying things out. Andy practised his knot tying and we did a bit more reading.
Our last day in Kirkwall coincided with the County Fair which we thought might be interesting and it certainly was.
|DREAMS CAN COME TRUE!
|FOR HELEN TOO!
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