The 1998 Log was a ‘special’, and I had not intended to do another. But when we were in France, Cross Corsen were signing off their vhf weather forecasts with the phrase ‘Bon Mer a Tous!’. So I had a title for a Log. All I had to do was put it together.
We had added a Monitor windvane, but otherwise the boat was basically unchanged.
In previous years we had raced though the Chenal du Four and the Raz de Sein. So we decided that this year we would explore that area, possibly including Ushant and the Rade de Brest as well. As usual, we went west along the English coast. The crossing from Salcombe was marked by incredible visibility, with Lizard, Le Stiff and Ile Vierge lights all being visible at 2330. The 100 miles took 20 hours.
Conditions looked favourable for going to Ushant, but off the Basse Paupian buoy we ran into thick fog. Checking the plotter against the radar we pressed on down the Chenal de Fromveur, not seeing any of the marks, but charging at over 10kts SOG. As we approached Le Jument, the fog lifted so we took the fisherman’s short cut using Malcolm Robsons marks and the plotter. Our stay in Ouessant (Ushant) was memorable.
After a brief visit to Douarnenez, we returned to Camaret, and made our way along the Brittany coast to the Baie de St Malo before returning home via Iles Chausey (though weather meant we only made a lunch stop there) and the Channel Islands.
We had to get back a bit early as we had undertaken to help a team from Alice Springs who had chartered a Farr 40 to compete in the Fastnet. We had a lot of fun with them, and treasure our honorary membership of the Alice Springs YC (Oh yes! It does exist!)
A week later, we took son Neil and his family almost across the Channel to witness the total eclipse. We had used the Halo weather site to see where the cloud sheet would be. It turned out to be about right, and we got a good view.
1999 Brittany PDF
The Log of this trip is available in the following form to friends. Contact me if you would like to see one of the publications.
If agreed, it will normally be delivered via Dropbox.
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