It is just under 4 week until the Skerries run and it is about time I gave an update on the plans for 11th, 12th and 13th May. The original plans have changed a little following the devastation caused by storm Emma to the marina in Holyhead. Unfortunately the marina no longer exists with many boats still submerged so clearly we will not be able to use the marina. There is a plan B however.
Jon Peers (Festinghouse) has close links with the Coxain of Holyhead lifeboat and has had some tentative discussions. The crew of the lifeboat normally practice on a Sunday but are thinking of bringing this forward to the Saturday and may join us at the Skerries which in itself would be quite an event.
Follow rounding the Skerries the plan is to head to Holyhead. The lifeboat is currently stationed within the inner harbour. Hopefully the Coxain will provide permission to enter the inner harbour and we will be able to raft up against the lifeboat. Those who would like, then have the opportunity to have a tour of the lifeboat which is a Severn Class and is the largest in the RNLI fleet.
If this plan doesnít come off for whatever reason then there is opportunity to land the ribs on Newry Beach within Holyhead main harbour on a falling tide. Low Tide Holyhead is around 3.00pm.
The weekend plan therefore is as follows:
Friday 11th May - Evening - A talk has been arranged by the RSPB warden of the Skerries at 8.30pm at the Royal Welsh Yacht Club. The talk is open to all and should provide some interest on the birds that we can expect to see around the island. It has quite a colony of Puffins and is renowned for the Artic Terns that nest on the islands. The RYWC bar will be open. Anybody is welcome to the talk even if you are no taking part in the following days.
Saturday 12th May - Day Ė Launching at Ty Calch between 9.15am and 10.15am. On arrival at Ty Calch drop your rib & trailer off immediately on arrival at the car park. Chris and the gang will drop the trailers on the beach. Directions will be given to where to park your car. All the prep work (and faffing as Helen my wife calls it) can be done on the beach. Chris will then launch in turn.
The plan is to leave at 10.30am. Care needs to be taken going out over Caernarfon bar. We should get to the Skerries around 11.30am to 12.00pm. We will spend a little time here before heading into Holyhead.
My intention is to leave Holyhead around 2.00pm for arrival back at Ty Calch for 4.00pm. On the return we will explore some of the caves, bays, sights and beaches and could also stop off at Pilots Cove before passing back over Caernarfon Bar. This obviously all depends on the weather which could well dictate changes to the suggested plan.
Saturday 12th May Ė Evening Ė There are 30+ places for a banquet B meal at Fuís Cantonese in Caernarfon. The round tables have been reserved for those who know Fuís to make it a sociable evening. Please book direct with Richard at Fus to reserve your seat. A small discount has been agreed against the regular banquet B price. The phone number for Fuís is 01286 669410. Please tell them that you are taking part in the Rib Rally. The plan is to get there for 7.30pm and eat at 8.00pm. After the meal (if you are not too tired) we can head to the bar in the Black Boy which is a short walk away.
Sunday 13th May - This will be a bit shorter day for me. The plan is to be on the water for between 10.30am and 11.00pm. We will then head for Puffin Island. (Possibly onto Moelfre again weather & time dependent). On the return between 12.30pm and 1.00pm we will call in at the Gazelle for a pint before heading back for recovery at Ty Calch around 3.00pm. Many of us have passed through the Swellies at all states of tide. However for those less familiar with the Swellies let me know. There will be someone including myself who will help to guide you through.
Well that is the plan and as I have already said it is weather dependent. It may be that the days are switched around. It could also be that the weather is just not good enough to get to the Skerries and the trip has to be done another time.
For those of you that feel the Skerries is too far then the run can be shortened by heading from North Stack directly into Holyhead harbour. There are also other options of shortening it still further by just taking in part of the west coast of Anglesey. The full run to the Skerries, into Holyhead and returning to Ty Calch I estimate to be around 80nm.
There are a number of additional items I would like to mention. Firstly the talk by the RSPB and the tour of the RNLI lifeboat are from organisations who would welcome our donations. I personally will donate £100 to each having saved to my CAF charity account over the last year. The RSPB does a great job conserving the nature around this special part of the world and the RNLI are there for when one of is in trouble. Any contribution would be most appreciated and there will be collection boxes available on the days.
In order that we know the numbers I would be grateful if you could check your details and fill in the form on the following link. All being well the spreadsheet can be seen and edited by anybody with the link.
Finally I donít want to be a kill joy and I donít like formalities. The weekend is for fun and a meeting of like-minded people. Never the less please remember it is a rib rally where you have total and full responsibility for your own safety, the safety of your crew and your rib. It really goes without saying please respect, the wildlife, fellow rib knobbers and everyone who is helping to make this a memorable weekend.
Any questions then pop them on a post. Have a great time!