Speedwell of Rhu Ship's Log

28 th to 29 th of July 2016 - Barloge Creek

Crew : Andy and Helen
Destinations : Barloge Creek.
Distance : 13 miles

After waiting for the weather forecast we weighed anchor at just after 10am. We coincided with the beginners class of Optimist sailors setting off across the river. They had limited control over the direction they wanted to go. We were unable to predict when they would tack, usually just as we thought we had a safe passage behind their sterns. The instructor did his best to fire instructions at them and was very apologetic. One little boy managed to drift in to a stationary yacht just as they were lifting their anchor. Fortunately no harm was done and we gave a sigh of relief as we managed to safely dodge them and head out of the bay. We didn't have far to go but, as the wind was again south westerly we decided to head offshore, outside of the Stag rocks. Once safely past we then tacked once and had a lovely sail, making a good heading toward our anchorage at Barloge Creek. As we headed through the narrow entrance, another boat had just arrived and were re setting their anchor. We waited for a while and as soon as they seemed settled we anchored in a nice spot. Unfortunately the other boat couldn't get their anchor to set. Each time they lifted it there were huge amounts of weed. After nearly 2 hours, their anchor seemed to find a sandy spot and they eventually stopped moving.



During the time it took them to anchor a kayaker had been out and caught 2 pollock. He very kindly offered one to us which we accepted, not having any fresh meat on the boat. We managed to gut and fillet it, drink two cups of tea, eat lunch and make a fish stock with the many trimmings (not a very good attempt at filleting) by the time our neighbours were settled. The afternoon was quite windy so we set the Mizen sail to stop us swinging around so much in the gusts. However, over night the winds died down and it was very peaceful. We had a gannet come in looking for food and several Choughs squeaking away as they flew overhead. The following morning an otter swam passed our stern as we ate breakfast.


We started out day by a quick walk through the gorse up the hill. This lead to several scratches, but was worth it for the view. Barloge Creek leads to Lough Hyne by a very narrow channel. The sea flows in through the channel for 4 hours each tidal cycle and out for 8 and 1/2 hours at up to 9 knots. Basically, the Lough never has time to adjust it level to sea level before the tide outside starts rising again, so the water in the lough is basically going down hill until the levels in the lough and outside are the same. At which point, as the sea level continues to rise, the water starts to go down hill in to the lough. There is only a very short period of slack water usually around 1 hour after high water outside. Hence, to explore Lough Hyne you have to time your passage. It is not possible in a small tender to fight the ebb, or the flood and it can be very rough in the rapids. Hence you have to time your entry accordingly. We headed through in to Lough Hyne as the water flooded and appeared fairly calm. We had to make sure we left when the stream was fairly slack. We were ready to leave the lough a little earlier than planned, so had to hang around by the rapids, waiting for the flood to subside. Eventually it seemed to slow down so had a go at motoring out. Unfortunately we didn't manage so waited a bit longer. Eventually we got bored and decided to pull the tender by hand. Andy pulled it from the side and I sat in the tender using the oar to stop us banging the rocks at the side. At the seaward end of the channel, Andy got back in and we were free to go home at last for a late lunch.



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