On September 19, we had several days of light winds forecast, and so we pushed out of Dover and headed down the English Channel, on an overnight sail, bound for Weymouth, about 146 miles away, or another 50 miles or so further along, to Dartmouth, if the ship made good progress.
We DID make good progress, and this was one of our more pleasant passages. We motored a lot, but it made for calm seas, for a change. Note Sima’s cup above, which did NOT runneth over!
We made Dartmouth at the end of the day on September 20.
Darkness gathered as we tried to locate a supposed anchorage about three miles upriver, near a place called the “Anchor Stone.” But we couldn’t find anything suitable at less than 50 feet of depth, which made no sense in the river’s strong current. So we grabbed a mooring ball. We moved to a floating dock the next day, where we pay $300/week for the luxury of tying up to a floating pontoon in the off-season with no access to land, no electricity, no water, and no Internet. If we HAD found the anchorage, the folks here would still have charged us $150 a week for the pleasure of using their mud. That’s the first time we’ve seen that. Welcome to the South Coast of England, no doubt one of the most outrageous places in the world to cruise on a long-term basis!
963 miles traveled, 160 miles to Brest, France, and the jump off point for the Bay of Biscay, 3,810 miles to the Caribbean.
We’ll try to slip off today, September 24, to cross the English Channel to Brittany. The weather is not bad, with winds of 15-20 knots forecast for just off of the beam. It may be too that we’ll then have an immediate weather window to cross the Bay of Biscay, a three-day trip and one of the more challenging parts of of our return to the US.