Down to Poole latish one day and a short, fast sail, down into Rockley Channel, to see how it has changed since I moored there, and then right down the Wareham Channel to the mouth of the Frome. Then I beat back to the shelter of Arne where I anchored for the night.
Not a restful experience. The wind got up and it was very noisy, howling in the rigging and everything creaking and groaning. It sounds terrible in the cabin, but when you stick your head out, it is just a bit breezy. I thought I would get a bit of peace in the middle of the night when the tide went out and I sat on the mud. On the mud was quiet. Bouncing and rocking onto the mud as the tide left wasn't. Neither was rocking and bouncing off the mud when it came back. You need to dry out for the whole night or none of it. Just an hour or so is not good.
In the morning I set out under double reefed sail. Discovered there was a gale warning. Far too windy for my pleasure. The mizzen gybed at one point with a great bang and I caught sight of a screw arcing through the air. "Where did that come from?!" After a while I saw that is was one screw of two holding the cheek block onto the mizzen mast for the sprit snotter. The block base was bent. I tore back into the wind shadow of Arne, doused all sail and motored back to Parkstone through a rising gale. No problem but no fun either. I replaced the cheek block with a rope loop wrapped round the mast, as Swallowboats originally fitted. Maybe they really do know what they are doing.
I have got a new fancy phone which recorded the whole journey as a track in Google maps, which I then uploaded to my 2011 cruise map. It shows every tack up and down each channel. Quite an impressive bit of kit. It even makes phone calls. My battery has not recharged fully from the previous week, which was a bit of a disappointment. I may need to rethink the solar panel arrangement. I could only use the depth sounder and even that ran out of power after three hours. But I ove the sounder for tacking in narrow channels.
Someone rang me over the weekend to ask about my boarding ladder arrangement, so these photos show it in all three positions.