2 August 2009

8.1 knots! 18.6nm (45.9)

Third time out and a really good sail. Sunny morning with the wind in the south, so we headed for Studland. This meant going out through the harbour entrance and going into the open English Channel. Then south to Studland, where we anchored for lunch before sailing back. On the way out we hit 7.1kts surfing down a wave. On the way back we re-entered the harbour and had a long broad reach, in amongst all the returning yachts, when we shot up to 8.1kts in slack water. Very exciting. Then long tacks the length of the harbour back to our mooring. I noticed after a while that most yachts were reefed, or sailing just with genoas up. We had full sail the whole way and never felt over pressed, although the helm does start to get heavy in stronger winds. Reefing may just make things a bit lighter.
Altogether a lovely sail. About 18nm in total.
My faith in my little anchor was dented. We anchored on a very sandy bottom at Studland, in about 1.5m. We started out about 20m outside a buoyed off swimming area. By the time we had finished lunch, we noticed that we were just edging into that area. The chain had wrapped around the anchor and just lifted it out of the sand. I reset the anchor much more carefully, making sure the chain lead off from it in a straight line and we didn't move again. Technique is just as important as technology.

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