Cruises 2015

Keep an eye on this page for details of this year's cruising activities:

Bank Holiday Cruise (23-25 May)

24 may pic124 may pic2 24 may pic3 Hurrah, we made it out of the river and bar a few minor incidents all went to plan...even the wind played ball!
So what did you miss?

Following a Friday Cruiser Night in the clubhouse, Horatio, Irene and Moonshine dropped their moorings early on Saturday and with following winds they made down the coast in close company. A lively sail was had across Felixstowe harbour and up the Orwell. Horatio nipped into Levington for lunch and to chivvy Galatea along, while Irene and Moonshine rendezvous’d with Woodwind at Pin Mill for crew to replenish reserves at the Butt and Oyster. Horatio’s crew turned up for dessert before all headed to Shotley for an evening in the Shipwreck with Galatea’s crew.

Moonshine’s arrival was somewhat delayed by getting a rope around her prop, requiring one of her crew to dive into the murky Orwell to sort it out.

Having said our goodbyes to Woodwind and crew, Sunday saw a fantastic beat out of Felixstowe and into the Walton Backwaters. Horatio stuck to the shore crossing over Halliday Rock flats and making a late move across to No2 buoy whilst Galatea and Moonshine tacked out to Landguard before storming down on Pye End and the No 2 buoy on a single tack, trying their utmost to haul in Irene who had taken advantage of an early lock out from Shotley. It was an exhilarating sail, in brilliant sunshine. An afternoon on the beach at Stone point was followed by a move, in flat calm and drizzle, around to Kirby Creek: possibly one of the most beautiful spots on the east coast. The trip up Hamford water was a little more eventful for Horatio as she developed engine problems and was assisted to her anchorage by Irene. Thankfully the sun returned to restore spirits before the evening debrief and some serious study of Scottish malts, English gins and Belgian beers aboard Galatea. In the morning, unable to fix the problem, and in light winds, Horatio made a long slow passage to Levington under sail, for repairs. Irene and Moonshine sailed in company back to the Ore; and Galatea, after a lazy morning followed Horatio back to Levington.

Fifty nautical miles were added to the log and the vast majority of those were under sail. A memorable cruise for lots of reasons!

End note: Horatio’s problem was soon sorted and she made her return with fair winds to Slaughden a few days later.

Bank Holiday Cruise (2-4 May)

2 may pic12 may pic2 The cruising programme got off to a blustery and cold start. Seven boats took part. The plan had been to leave the Ore early Saturday morning and make for Pin Mill (tables had been booked at the Butt & Oyster and moorings secured from Harry King & Sons Boatyard) and then into the Backwaters on the Sunday for some creek exploring and a BBQ on the beach Stone Point. Moonshine and Scapino had sailed around from the Deben on the Friday afternoon to join the other Alde & Ore based cruisers (Gwendoline, Horatio, Moonwind, and Sea Lark) in Butley. Yanda had planned to leave the Deben on Saturday and join the cruise. The forecast of easterly winds, with a smattering of F7 and F8 and a lot of F6, curtailed the ambitions, as did the extremely cold and frosty Friday night (despite the quantities of ‘anti-freeze’ taken by crew and skippers alike).

After knocking the ice from the rigging, Scapino and Gwendoline lead the way up river on Saturday morning: Scapino making for Aldeburgh and duties at the Club, and Gwendoline heading to Snape. The stragglers had a relaxed breakfast and a fantastic sail up to Brick Dock for lunch. The effects of the cold night and the forecast for a wet Sunday took its toll on the fleet with Sea Lark and Horatio returning to their moorings after lunch. Moonwind, Moonshine and Scapino sailed back down to Butley and the crews walked into Orford for a well-earned drink or two and a lovely dinner at the Kings Head. They were joined by Leslie D, Allen C and Dave A. Leslie took pity on the weary crews and provided a taxi service back to Butley Oysterage.

Yanda, confined by the forecast, explored the Deben on the Saturday with a lunch stop in Woodbridge.

Sunday morning was a washout: cold, wet and windy. After surviving another cold night, Moonwind decided to make for civilisation and the better climate in Aldeburgh. The crews from Scapino and Moonshine crew waited for the sun to appear after lunch before trekking into Orford to revisit the Kings Head for a lazy pint in the sun.

Monday saw a lively sail in fresh winds and bright sunshine. Scapino headed back to the Deben and her berth in the Tidemill while Moonshine had a more leisurely sail back to Slaughden. Feedback from the crews was very positive, despite not making it to Pin Mill. Good sailing was had by all and hopefully the next cruise will be more fortuitous in terms of weather.