Sunday, 28 October 2012

That was the year that was... 2012

Time for what is now my traditional review of the year past; I really enjoy putting it together as it's a good excuse to review and read all the posts, video and pictures from this years logs.... I would say that it's been a good year because of a few memorable events, but it's not been a classic year. The subject of weather has been done to death in the press and on other yachting forums, but I think I'd agree that it wasn't a good summer - certainly worse than last year....

The other big issue for me in 2012 was the failure of the sink skin fitting; in hindsight it wasn't really as bad as I thought at the time, but there was no doubt that if I hadn't caught her in time the outlook could have been a lot worse.. the downside was a big 10 week gap in the middle of the season when I could have been sailing and putting on miles....

All in all then I'd say that this was a good'ish year....  7, oh go on then, 8 out of 10..  smiley emoticons

Like a spider dipped in blue ink and left to wander all over Google Earth - here's where Papillon went this year - click again for slightly bigger views of the pictures in this post:

In the harbour - as far north as Emsworth, as far east as Bosham and West Itchenor this year
 ...and this time with the two trips out into the Solent - to Portsmouth and Cowes this year!


Lot of miles in the Solent (for me!) this year...



...and the following in "Ami-Ly" - no cross Channel trip as we'd hoped this year (weather casualty) but I still managed to get in a good number of miles with Rod her skipper - highlight being the seal sighting just off Portchester Castle, and my first trip with a cruising chute (I want one!)


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Number of visits down to the boat: 14 (three less than last year) but once again if you count all the times I visited in the mornings/evenings while she was on shore (usually two to three times a week), and the days I worked on her pre-season, and the cups of tea visits (and pot noodle visits!) - easily triple that...

Total distance sailed: 173.29 miles; this compares with 193.41 miles in 2011, 154.23 miles in 2010 and 125 miles in 2009... a good year, but not as good as last year.. having said that it's only 20 miles less than last year and on three trips less so further indications that I'm taking her further each trip..

Nights on board: 1 - that was on the Cowes raid...  I have finally found a comfortable way to sleep on her...smiley emoticons

Crew on occasion: 1 daughter - youngest - she's good company and is turning into a more confidant helm...  she still says sailing is "boring"... smiley emoticons

Cruising range: The mooring in the west, Emsworth to the north, Bosham/Itchenor in the East and the Folly (up the Medina River from Cowes) to the south..

Biggest Cruise: Cowes raid here and here! (57 miles in one weekend!)...

Cowes Raid - Pap on the Folly pontoon...  happy times!
Best Cruise: So hard, as 2012 was brilliant - but a choice of three, the Cowes raid (which proves adventure is available to everyone), the trip to Portsmouth Harbour entrance in May, but also the last cruise of the season up to Itchenor and Bosham which was idyllic. I'm going to go for the Portsmouth Harbour trip simply because of the express elevator trip back - stunning speed, sunshine and breeze..  perfect.

Worst cruise: The outbound trip to Cowes - weather hideous, cold, wet, miserable! smiley emoticons

Oddest cruise: Breaking the duck at the beginning of the season (finally) - only time I've taken Pap out in a 6 gusting 7..!

Best anchorages: None... didn't anchor this year either...  really need to do something about that, I've never anchored in all the years I've had her! Part of the problem of course is that everywhere I sail there are huge numbers of empty moorings so there's little need to anchor!

Best mooring: Hmmmm...  been an "interesting" year for moorings...  My new one is a cracker (once we get the sinker re-buried) water 3+ hours either side of high tide...  the temporary one I got put on at the end of the year has even more water but is a bit of a long slog out on oars! Looking forward to getting back on mine next summer... smiley emoticons

Worst mooring: None... they're all good when you need a cup of tea!

Plans for next year: The bigger adventure will come once/if I sell Papillon.... new boat to search for...  Then there was talk of taking Ami-Ly over to Cherbourg this year but the weather scuppered that - next year would be good!

2012 Mileage:
  • 30th April : 0.5 mile  (don't laugh) - force 6 gusting 7 - blowing the cobwebs out..
  • 13th May : 8.55 miles - force 4 gusting 5 - SW - gusty day, little'un helmed us to the bottom of the harbour and did a brilliant job .
  • 20th May : 10.15 miles - force 4 gusting 5 - N/NNE - another gusty day, windex jammed but came free...
  • 24th May : 9.33 miles - force 2 - S/SSE - sunny day, afternoon off work - lots of tacking...windex knackered... free smileys 
  • 29th May : 28.73 miles - force 2 and 3 (morning and afternoon) - WSW to SW(ditto) - Spitbank Fort and Portsmouth Harbour..  superb trip back!
  • 17th June : 16.82 miles - force 5 - S - head of Prinstead Channel 
  • 8th July : 12.23 miles - force 2, up to force 4 at the end - W/WSW - HISC and the Emsworth on a sunny, wet, and squally day... windex working for the moment - must be all these gales....
  • 14th July : 32.20 miles - force 2, up to force 4/5 at the end - W - Chichester to Cowes for the Raid... wet, squally, horrible, cold, wet
  • 15th July : 24.85 miles - force 1, up to force 5 at the end - W - Cowes to Chichester back from the Raid... long goose wing run... lost my hat at the West Pole in a squall!
  • 21st July : 4.28 miles - force 1 or 2 - SE - Saturday afternoon pootle... first run out for new hat.. 
  • 23rd July : 16.08 miles - force 3 dropping to force 2 by the end - S/SSW - Bosham and Itchenor...  huge tide, just made it back in time...!
  • 1st September : 19.88 miles (not counted to my year count, as not in Pap ) - force 4 occasional 5 - SW/SSW - Northney to Port Solent taking Ami-Ly back to her home berth - superb sail....
  • 16th September : 18.96 miles (not counted to my year count, as not in Pap ) - force 2 occasional 3 - SW - Port Solent to Northney taking Ami-Ly back to finish her repairs - first time with the cruising chute.... 
  •  7th October : 8.57 miles - summer coming to  close, light breeze (force 1 gusting 2) I spent an afternoon tacking to Marker and then running back to the mooring.. getting cold...
Year total: 173.29 miles

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Not so much a bang as a whimper...

...so how did the weekend go? Well the title kind of gives it away....

I'd taken Friday afternoon off expecting it to be grey but with a little wind to allow some last minute perambulations round my little corner of the harbour, in the end it was grey, raining, and almost windless...  not a brilliant combination - ah well, fired up the new cooker, boiled a kettle, and passed the afternoon with coffee and a curry pot noodle while watching the (wet) world go by... not so bad, I had the Kindle with me so it was nothing if not relaxing...

Saturday I had planned to go round the island but needed an early start as I wanted to have a slightly more relaxing circumnavigation than what could be done in a single tide...  once again - the weather struck back, and when I got up to check the weather I couldn't see the end of my street it was so foggy....  circumnavigation cancelled so I went down to the boat later that day and took the mast down ready for lift out on Sunday.....

Was sat there drinking a coffee when one of the lift out team asked if I wanted to come out then and there - "might as well", I thought - would save me being busy all day Sunday...!

...and so it was that Saturday evening - after dark - I was lifted on to my trailer and wheeled into a quiet corner of the yard.....

Summer is officially over.....

Thoughts now turn to prep-ping the boat for sale (rather than a sail ) - pressure washed her this morning, ready for a coat of anti-foul, then she goes on eBay. If anyone is interested by the way - leave me a comment....

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Lift out approaches....

...and I'm still 20 miles short of my yearly target..... 

..."Papillon" is scheduled to be lifted on Sunday so I have the rest of this week and Saturday for the final push... I know it's not critical, but it would be nice to come in on target...

That my friends, is a weather window...
 ...I have my eye on a weather window this Saturday - the forecast is for lighter winds than of late (and locally they've been F6 and F7 most of the week so far), and sunny weather - if it comes off it'll be just the job for a little perambulate round the island [clicky for the last time I did it]....

Added bonus will be no need to drop the mast when I come out on Sunday, as I'll be the "right" side of the bridge...  fingers crossed......

Monday, 8 October 2012

"Marker" tacking session....

Yee gods, it was good to be back on the boat...

First time out since the Bosham trip at the end of July (10 weeks ago!), a huge hole in the middle of the sailing season, but couldn't be helped.. if the weather had been better I'd have been out well before now..

As  it was the sun shone (for some of it), but blimey was it cold...

Nothing exciting - tacking practice again as only Chichester can teach you; when the channels are narrow, the tide is against you, the wind is light, and a slightly southerly SW'ly (if you know what I mean)

Little over two hours to Marker, carried on past for a while, but the sun was disappearing along with the wind  so I turned for a gentle run back to the mooring... lots of people out so some conversation as we drifted with various club members... oh, and good to meet you Chris - I'm still not convinced those oar things are a good idea.. 

Coffee needed more than the Coke today..
An afternoon of gentle exertions - much appreciated..  track for the day as follows:

Look at all those tacks!
Scores on the doors:

Distance: 8.57 miles (cumulative total in the 2012 mileage tab at the top of the page)
Wind: Force 1 gusting two .. south, must have been a little westerly in it as well...
Sail Plan: Full main, full jib..
Speed: GPS says max speed was 4.9 knots which was almost certainly under motor, average speed of 2.4 knots... 

An average video of an average day..  


...we're now just 20 miles short of our 2011 mileage, and lift out is the 21st October... can we do it??

View over my shoulder as I turned for home..

Monday, 1 October 2012

Messing about...

From here - not our moorings, but gives a nice impression of the day...!
With Friday off to go sailing, I was watching the forecast with more than a little interest most of the week....  first time out in five weeks so also more than a little anticipatory! 

Forecast looked good so plan was to go out to Pap as early as possible and use the first half hour to replace a couple of blocks (rope guides for the topping lift and main halyard), and re-fit the boom which I'd left off when the mast went up. At the time I figured it would be better off in the cabin in light of the weather - good decision.. lots of wind and rain, so the decreased windage was a good plan.

Anyway...  Friday dawned grey and wet, not the plan, was supposed to be bright....  an hour later and I was on the boat by 9.....  errmmm...  is it supposed to be this windy....??

Nothing gained, I pushed on with the plan - blocks were replaced, the boom was reattached, the mainsail sliders were re-threaded....  then disaster....   cooker wouldn't work - no tea! Bloody thing....  gas cannister (check), bang it on the side (check), hold it upside own (check), I even stripped down the equivalent of the carb, still no go....  settled for a beer instead  while I contemplated what was now a solid force 5 gusting 6 through the moorings... not optimal...  in fact no good...

Rather than waste the day completely (it wasn't wasted anyway...  it was good just to be back on the boat messing about...) I decided to go and recover my mooring tackle  from the old mooring [clicky]..  I'd have to do it anyway and the longer I left it the more manky it would become...  much to my surprise, even after a seasons use, the galvanised shackle actually unscrewed  (but had to bash it a few times with a hammer just to free it up slightly). So mooring chain recovered...  five weeks and it was covered in weed at top, and bottom.... (after a quick going over with a pressure washer it's as good as new, and it's home now hanging in the garage waiting for next year..)

So that was it...  little bit disappointing as there was no option to go sailing over the weekend (and Saturday was very nice though still windy), but on the other hand she's ready to go when I do get an opportunity..... only 30 miles off my 2011 total...

PS. New cooker purchased - we shall have tea!