1st. Day Cruise of 2022 on 5 April

On Tuesday 5th April 2022, 3 WPCA sailing boats took the 10:00 bridge lift to sail to the East Shambles buoy and back in a forecast Force 5 WNW wind. This would provide a broad reach for the 8.5NM to the buoy and a close reach back to Weymouth. Monterey, Iona and Minnehaha exited the harbour avoiding the dredging operation at the harbour entrance and hoisted sails, all reefed for the conditions. The broad reach out to East Shambles was made in slight seas. Monterey decided to round the buoy leaving it to Starboard which was an error as after tacking, the tide was taking her down onto the buoy. Iona took the better option of sailing to windward and up tide of the buoy and could bear away and gybe round it. Minnehaha initially continued towards Guernsey before turning as the crew was below putting on warmer clothing.

The return leg was close hauled mostly on port tack with 20 knots of apparent wind gusting to 25 knots so a spirited sail and most enjoyable. Monterey arrived on the holding pontoon at 13:25 in time for a cuppa and hot pasties before the 14:00 bridge lift which was taken by all three boats. This was an enjoyable early season test for the boats and crew.