As LT has said the first ever Plymouth to Looe pasty run finally happened yesterday albeit 13 months later than first planned. The score is now weather 3; Pasties 1
The plan was to meet up at the Breakwater fort for a midday jump off. Knowing it was a bank holiday weekend and there was a junior racing event on in the Sound I decided to launch early at Saltash to avoid the slipway crush and to get a good car spot - I shouldn't have worried
I picked my crew up on the way down and got to the slipway at 10.00 ish. A simple launch, only 1 other boat prepping and 1 in the trailer park - simples.
Steve had never seen Plymouth from the sea so we had a sweet bimble down the river looking at the big grey toys and working out the streams and rivers that feed into the Tamar. A tour of the best sites and then over to Bovisand for a cup of tea. We launched in the dry but the hoods soon came up on the way down the river, but the shower didn't last long and although the sun didn't come out it was pleasant with no wind.
As we left Bovi ( a great place for a tea, burger or loo stop) we had another rain squall so we were wondering if we'd be on our own. As we approached the fort we could make out a rib sat there enjoying the view so we knew we were on our way.
10 minutes later a third rib net member appeared and we were aware that Ian had jibbed out as the sea was too flat for him.......
5 minutes to 12 and we're starting to think that it'll be the three of us and a rather large Cobra arrives - oddly enough not a rib net member (but should be by now) who had seen the cruise details and thought they'd join in (good job they did too - more later)
Introductions were made, channels decided on and they let the 50 hp lead, with a 100, 115 and 300 behind me I didn't expect to be in the front long but we headed off at around 25 knots and turned West.
Being a small rib with such niceties as a plotter on board navigation was simple, follow the coast and when we get to Looe Island, turn inland and hope. The run over was going well until I suddenly stopped dead - turn off key, re turn and off we go - how odd!
Looking towards Looe we could see the biggest, blackest, darkest cloud that the Weather could throw at us. As we approached the squall the sea went from a gentle chop to lumpy and confused, speed dropped right down as the sea was navigated rather than flown over - this worked for us though because as we motored into Bude the sun came out and the squall moved on - result.
A gentile poodle down the river looking for the new pontoon with a yellow V above. We saw a pontoon with a glass bottom boat on, we saw a yellow V against the wall but not the two together. We decided to be good and moored up against the Visitors berth where we found out that the glass bottom boat pontoon isn't - it's the small boat visitors berth and not for their sole use!
A cafe was sought (as Black Dog Marine looked all shut up) and finally a pasty was ordered along with a mug of tea and very nice they were too. Made even tastier when we found out that the cafe had run out of pasties and the other two boats were on sandwiches and cooked breakfasts. Odd really when you consider Looe has one of the best pasty shops that I know.
After a nice sit in the sun we re loaded ready for the journey home with a tail wind and following sea, soon after leaving the harbour I again stopped dead - now we now why, poxy knee hitting the key when being bounced forward. Going to have to do something about that in the future (when I work out what I'll let you all know).
The ride was fun, crest hopping and small surfs were the order of the day. I again led the way and as we reached the site of the Coronation Wreck ( of which I dive as part of the survey team - The Coronation Wreck Project
) my crew told me we'd lost the others. Now I know I was enjoying the surf but 50 hp compared to all others in 3 figures - something was amiss.
As we started to fight back upwind and tide
the radio sparked into life and we had a dead one - and a tow was needed. Our new friend with the lovely big beast took the engine out of tick over ( can't have needed much more to keep up with me) and undertook the towing duties.
A great day, new friends met, names put to faces, some lovely boats seen and more importantly a pasty was finally had.
For those that like the stats I ran 40 nm and had to swoop onto the reserve tank around 200 yards from the slip way. My main is 30 liters and looking at it when home there is still around 4l within - will find out later when I fill it up exactly the amount used but going with 30l for ease.
Roll on the next Plymouth to XXX cruise.