Away Again At Last
We finally left Grimsby after our long stay, sneaking out the gates at 5am and hoisting the sails in a steady 7kts. A short detour to say goodbye to Bull Sand Fort, a frequent sight of ours while sailing out of Grimsby, then out past the end of Donna Nook range to where we could set a course straight for Brancaster.
Seeing as we were going to be on the same tack for most of the day I set the tiller pilot on course and set to experimenting with the steering sail and mainsail steering systems. Unfortunately the steering sail proved to be a bit of a failure, I will have to reshape the foot, raise the clew a little and try again. The mainsail steering was a different story entirely though, we spent the whole day close hauled and it steered us admirably coping with winds from 12kts to 22kts without any input, the only times I had to make any alteration was when we were pushed around a little by a few larger waves, on the whole I only had to touch it around once an hour and I'm quite impressed seeing as we were so close to the wind.
By the time we were near Brancaster the wind had changed direction and was blowing straight from where we wanted to be, Suzanne was feeling rough and had passed out below so after a few tacks towards our destination without making much ground I reluctantly started up the noisy thing, motoring the last mile to drop the hook and wait for enough water to enter Brancaster. At least a bit of motoring has topped up the batteries, I'll be glad when I can afford a wind generator and don't need to run it though.
Self steering mark 1, lots of wet rope drying in the background
The serious look of leaving cheap beer and good company
Far too many of these ruddy things around.