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Ferry from Portsmouth to La Rochelle

I was acquainted with RM 890 on the occasion of this conveying from Portsmouth (Great Britain) to La Rochelle, carried out on behalf of the fora marine shipyard. I discovered a small boat as sympathetic as its allure left him to think. The fittings are as coherent as they are bright, while in this monokeel and bi-saffron version the performances are at the rendezvous (7.5 at 8 knots at reaching in 15-18 knots of wind). One weak point in my eyes, the drawing of the cockpit, where due to a little low hilory and lack of Central footrests I had trouble to really ask myself.

Gosport, at breakfast time (photo F. Augendre)

While a ridge stretched over the channel and the Bay of Biscay, this navigation proved to be a relative rest (cold of beggars, but low to moderate bearing winds). This was not to mention the unlikely coincidence of three encounters with fishing gear (in service or not). The misadventures began halfway between England and the French coasts, when a fishing Orin caught in the propeller. So close to the rail of the freighters, and in quasi-absence of wind, there was no other choice but to dive. This is the moment when one is pleased to always have a mask in its conveyor bag… and where we promise to add a wetsuit in the future.

Glad to have overcome it (photo F. Augendre)

A few miles from the entrance to the channel of the furnace, this time it is a net or a locker “active” that we hung, at night, in the keel and the rudders. All manoeuvres (sailing) to pull out of the trap will be futile, until the current is reversed, which will allow the boat to release itself almost miraculously. Never two without three… Two hours from La Rochelle, in the Pertuis Breton, and always at night, the chance placed a buoy of locker pile on our road. Will fishermen someday equip their fishing gear with light tracking devices?

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From La Rochelle to the Canary Islands with a…

Ten days is the time that we have had to go down from La Rochelle to Lanzarote (Canary Islands) aboard this catamaran Lucia 40 from Fountaine-Pajot, flying the Canadian pavilion. This was the first stage of a transatlantic passage that should lead us to Saint Lucia (lesser Antilles) next December. By then the boat should be equipped with a tip-out and a genaker on the storage: if the owner of this brand new sailboat had hesitated to take this equipment, he confirmed on this first crossing that without appropriate downwind sail this type of catamaran is struggling in less of twelve knots true wind speed.

360 º vision or almost from the mess is not the least of the charms of sailing catamaran cruise.

Sustained breeze, flat sea, flying fishes, and a beautiful light on the volcanic reliefs : arriving in Lanzarote, Canarias.

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Frossay (France) to Chichester (GBR)

During this spring voyage, the idea was to accompany a couple of British owners who had just bought a Sun Odyssey 45 DS (for Deck Saloon) in the Loire-Atlantique and wanted to repatriate him to the south coast of England. From the dry port “The gates of the Atlantic”, located in Frossay sur la Loire (upstream of Saint-Nazaire) until the port afloat of Chichester (a handful of miles east of Portsmouth), it is a very technical navigation that awaited us, between currents and passages to Level, near-permanent proximity of obstacles and dangers, and intense maritime traffic-be it the fishing fleets near the Breton coasts as well as the crossing of the rail of the freighters in the sleeve, in the extension of the DST of the helmets.

If the reinforcement of two friends of the owners allowed to organize a very comfortable rotation for the crew of three watches (two hours of standby for four hours of rest), I had to seriously limit the sleep times. It is in these circumstances that we appreciate the comfort of a wide hood covering the descent and the front of the cockpit…

Our Sun Odyssey 45 Deck Saloon at Bon Port. Sky and humid weather, but Marina impeccably held and that is enough to conclude the conveyance on a very positive note.

The case was rounded, with a very short stopover in Loctudy, the time to pass the strongest of an east stroke and to adjust the time of passage of the tsunami. The most delicate, paradoxically enough, was the landing in England, the nocturnal drizzle reducing to fifteen or twenty meters the visibility in the sinuous and narrow arm of the sea leading to the lock of Chichester. This ended engine at idle, in the glow of the frontal, seeking our way in the midst of bulky moorings these more countryside than maritime.

The episode was once more an opportunity to check that to navigate the nose on electronic mapping it would be quick to finish in the mud: it is not that the GPS is imprecise-at the time of the differential GPS the position it provides is reliable at five meters prè S-it is that the map itself-on which nothing tells us at what time and with which method were made the readings-is not necessarily totally connected with the landscape. Channels, it moves with the years, and old surveys (lead surveys, spaced by nature, with positioning on markers on the ground to the optic bezel), it leaves a large part of Blur and vagueness.

With patience and precautions we arrived at sunrise in a remarkably well-kept Marina, whose pub serves Homeric breakfasts, whose sanitary facilities are worthy of a palace (when one dreams for three days of a burning shower, it counts ), which the train connects to London in no time, and which bathes in a peaceful atmosphere totally out of time. It may be located a few steps away from the Solent, which I think I have travelled pretty much under all seams, I did not know anything about the place, which deserves a visit in many respects. A real discovery, and an address to keep in mind.