Speedwell of Rhu Ship's Log

14 th to 16 th of July 2016 - St Mary's Pool

Crew : Helen and Andy
Destinations : St Mary's Pool.
Distance : 4 miles

We left our anchorage around 9am. The winds were forecast to back west then south west so we thought St Mary's Harbpur should be fairly comfortable. It is fairly notorious as an uncomfortable harbour open to swells from the west and north west. Yachts are also known to drag fairly frequently. However, they have some extremely robust mooring buoys and clear instructions are given by the harbour master as to how they would suggest tying up. Fortunately we have a strop spliced with heavy chain in the middle which Andy made up specifically to do this job. The chain on the buoy was massive and very rusty, but was clearly strong. It was a fairly rocky spot, but not that uncomfortable. We had to be careful about leaving things standing around on surfaces, but were able to get in the tender and go ashore easily. We were offered 4 nights for the price of 3 so decided to spend a few days carrying out chores, washing, shopping and walking. We finally found a good chandlery and managed to get what we needed for repairs to the AIS. We now just need a pepper grinder.


We explored the Garrison initially which has a lovely hotel in the old fort at the top for a cup of tea. There are plenty of battlements and a few old canons. The views at the top showed us where we had come from and where we would be headed, although not quite as far as Ireland.


The following day we set out with a picnic and hiked around the Island in an anticlockwise direction, exploring the ancient burial mounds and villages. The views were stunning with blue skies for the most part. There were sandy coves with white sand and a couple of good cafes for a cup of tea. We did consider a swim but Andy forgot his swim shorts so I made do with a paddle at Bar Point, looking out toward Tresco.


Before settling for the evening, we went ashore to the nearest beach and I was finally able to use my "new" wetsuit, bought in the Whitby Asda store in 2010. I also tried out my snorkel for the first time. Andy laughed at the fact that I still brought my head to the side to breathe during front crawl. Totally unnecessary. We then returned to the boat where we put the solar shower, that came with Speedwell, to use for the first time. During the evening, whilst on deck, a large Hallberg Rassy came in to pick up a mooring. After 5 aborted attempts, they gave up. The crew on the foredeck managed to pick up the buoys quite easily. Unfortunately it seemed that the man at the helm hadn't been taught how to stop the boat. For a while we were very anxious about our own boat and Andy put the fenders out. They managed to break a pick up buoy, nearly messed up their own bow thruster with ropes when they tried to lasso the buoy and finally drifted into a lovely French motor boat. It was likely they did more damage to their top sides than to the motor boat. However, they decided not to stay around and headed off literally into the sunset and all around were able to relax. 

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