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Old 21 January 2015, 09:22   #1
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2015 trips

Hi all, I am stuck in the office looking out at the cold grey sky and already looking forward to a great spring and summer on the boat.

This year I plan to try and squeeze in 3 'big' trips and to cheer up the day am starting to plan. I can put together passage plans etc but you can't beat local knowledge and info from those who have already experienced it so thought I would draw on the combined knowledge to gather some top tips on places to stop and visit, those to avoid, good accommodation and maybe see if anyone wants to join.

I am based in Poole so all trips will begin and return there. My fuel tank limits me to approx 80nm between refuelling stops so this will dictate the legs and I aim for the trips to be comfortable cruising rather than a race to get somewhere and back

1). Poole to Alderney via Cherbourg.

Day1 Poole to Cherbourg
Day 2 Cherbourg to Alderney
Day 3 Alderney to Poole

Looking at tentative dates of mid May

2). Poole to Ramsgate

Possibly do in 1 hit with multiple fuel stops but most probably stop overnight in Brighton or there abouts.

3). Poole to Dartmouth

A long weekend or a 4 day trip and that is as far as I have got.

Any hints or tips gratefully received.

Cheers, Andy
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Old 21 January 2015, 13:07   #2
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I am keen to participate in some cruises this year and to Cherbourg and Alderney suits me fine. Could be a good weekend especially if one gets the right weather.

Just to get some numbers in and a date agreed. Something to look forward while the days get longer.
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Old 21 January 2015, 13:19   #3
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I've got two big trips planned for 2015: (1) In may I'm off to Ireland, just a long weekend and (2) in July a 10 day cruise off Scotland including the Caledonian.

Id love to join you to Cherbourg if it doesn't clash.
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Old 21 January 2015, 13:43   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andyjcox1 View Post
Hi all, I am stuck in the office looking out at the cold grey sky and already looking forward to a great spring and summer on the boat.

This year I plan to try and squeeze in 3 'big' trips and to cheer up the day am starting to plan. I can put together passage plans etc but you can't beat local knowledge and info from those who have already experienced it so thought I would draw on the combined knowledge to gather some top tips on places to stop and visit, those to avoid, good accommodation and maybe see if anyone wants to join.

I am based in Poole so all trips will begin and return there. My fuel tank limits me to approx 80nm between refuelling stops so this will dictate the legs and I aim for the trips to be comfortable cruising rather than a race to get somewhere and back

1). Poole to Alderney via Cherbourg.

Day1 Poole to Cherbourg
Day 2 Cherbourg to Alderney
Day 3 Alderney to Poole

Looking at tentative dates of mid May

2). Poole to Ramsgate

Possibly do in 1 hit with multiple fuel stops but most probably stop overnight in Brighton or there abouts.

3). Poole to Dartmouth

A long weekend or a 4 day trip and that is as far as I have got.

Any hints or tips gratefully received.

Cheers, Andy
Defiantly interested in the trip to Alderney , pencil me in
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Old 21 January 2015, 15:34   #5
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Hi Andy - I'm game for a return to Alderney. Dartmouth is on my list too. Will listen out for dates then try and join you all.
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Old 21 January 2015, 16:59   #6
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I might be up for something, although still very early days for any holiday plans for me!

Some of my thoughts from doing Poole -> Penzance -> Poole last August are here: Poole -> Penzance -> Poole - trip log .

I stopped in Salcombe rather than Dartmouth on that trip, which was very easy, and the harbour masters are always very helpful. Can recommend both Salcombe Harbour Hotel and the Victoria Inn for accom, although the latter only has a couple of rooms and the former is quite expensive!

Andy - I would say definitely consider some extra fuel carrying capacity, if that's your total with no reserve. 80NM doesn't leave that much spare in a Poole -> Cherbourg or Alderney leg, such that if you do encounter rough weather and take longer to cross the channel, use the throttle more to power through waves, etc., you could be at risk of running out!
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Old 22 January 2015, 10:14   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andyjcox1 View Post

Any hints or tips gratefully received.

Cheers, Andy
Hi Andy. I’ve not done the Ramsgate trip but have done the other two (Alderney/Cherbourg regularly) and the following may help:

Alderney/Cherbourg

You do not say in your post whether your 80nm range leaves the recommended 1/3 reserve tank, but if not a Channel crossing will be right on the limit. Quayside petrol is available in both Cherbourg and Alderney (the latter from the inner harbour, which is tidal so you need to time your fuelling) but Poole Harbour Entrance to Cherbourg is 64nm and the return from Alderney is 68nm. Add around 3nm from your marina to the Harbour Entrance and allow for some deviation off course and you may not have a lot left!

Check that your boat insurance covers not only continental waters (which include UK and European coastal waters up to 12nm offshore) but that it also covers the bit of the Channel in between this since this is not automatic and usually requires a special endorsement. Having just renewed my own insurance with this point being of concern, some quotes stipulated as requirements for such an endorsement: having an aux motor, only permitting crossings between 1 May and 30 September in less than a force 4 and with a three day weather window and/or having a working EPIRB. I finally settled for one which requires a PLB on board (which I already have anyway) and for any crossing to be in company of at least one other boat. The latter is not ideal since I am not averse to solo crossings but has resulted in a considerably lower premium.

Watch your speed in Cherbourg Harbour (outer harbour 14kn; inner harbour 8kn; marina 3kn) the authorities have land based radar guns which they use and the fines are steep. I’ve not been caught but I know a man who has!

On the subject of regulations, the French require all lifejackets (worn or spare) and any flares carried to be in date. Fines can be levied if they are not.

Port Chantereyne Marina offers overnight berthing discounts for members of sailing clubs and associations (including the RYA). Although myself a member, I have never been asked for evidence of it. Berthing is on walk ashore pontoons.

The Hotel Chantereyne right by the marina permits free cancellation of reservations up to 24 hours beforehand (useful if the weather prevents/delays a crossing).

In Alderney, mooring is to one of the visitors’ buoys in the harbour and shore access is by water taxi or your own tender. If you use the water taxi, you may wish to drop any crew off first since the taxi often seems to charge per person rather than per trip!

Accommodation on Alderney is in hotels/B&Bs or the campsite. The latter is a bit of a trek from the harbour but can be done. The posh Braye Beach Hotel is the closest to the harbour but pricey. The Harbour Lights Hotel is only a little further and slightly cheaper. There are various B&Bs up the hill in the town.

Petrol on Alderney is available from Mainbrayce by jerrycans serving by siphon from the harbourside directly into the boat. Since the jerrycans need to be filled from the local garage (a short but steep walk up the hill if you want to do it yourself!) advance notice is advisable to ensure availability.

Remember that Alderney is outside the EU and that full customs regulations (Q flag, completion of Form C1331 and telephone contact with customs before disembarking from the boat) theoretically apply upon return from there to the UK.

Dartmouth

Similar concerns about fuel apply since from Poole Harbour Entrance it is 77nm (which distance involves going through the races off St Albans and Portland which are best avoided either by the respective inshore or outer routes available for both at a cost of some additional distance). Theoretically, there is quayside petrol at Portland but you should check beforehand since over a number of visits I have only had around 60% success of it being available. Only once was it an essential which involved us manually lugging cans for several lengthy trips between the garage and the marina in Weymouth. Necessary for the return to Poole, since we would otherwise have run out off Swanage!

Petrol is available from the fuel barge in Dartmouth but be warned it is pricey!

The harbourmaster can generally accommodate walk ashore pontoon mooring although this may be difficult at busy (holiday) periods when mooring is by buoy in the river with a water taxi ashore. There is a tourist office just by the main square which can provide a list of accommodation (hotels/B&Bs) (01803 834224) but prior reservation is advised in busy periods.

Hopefully, the above is of some general use (if rather lengthy!) but let me know if you have any specific questions and I will do my best to help.

David
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Old 22 January 2015, 12:31   #8
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Hi all, thanks for the great replies so far. The more info and more boats the better in my book and David your post was very helpful.

As for fuel, the 80nm allows for some spare fuel in my tank plus I carry 20-40 litres in cans on longer trips just in case so in theory if crap hits the fan I could eak out another 50nm. But as everyone rightly says, best to have a third in reserve.

I'll post dates as I know them, I am pencilling in May 15-17 for the Alderney trip at the moment and will see if the weather plays ball.

Please keep the great info coming.

Andy
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Old 22 January 2015, 13:02   #9
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I didn't read down far enough to spot the Ramsgte trip.. We have petrol; so does Brighton and Eastbourne so it's an ideal trip.

Easily do'able in 1 hit from Poole if the weather is kind but equally loads of B&B's in both locations (short bus ride in both cases). If you do it in one hit I'll come down to Brighton/Eastbourne and meet you lunchtime to run back upto Ramsgate together.

I'll be pleased to do what I can from this end too; being my home port.
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Old 23 January 2015, 14:42   #10
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15-17 May Alderney so far suits me fine. Noted in the diary . Let's confirm closer to the date. Are you thinking Friday to Cherbourg and Saturday to Alderney and Sunday back to the UK or stay in the CI for the weekend having a base in Alderney.

In case of weather change etc I have a radar and AIS for transmitting and receiving
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