Sailing experiences post-lockdown

Please write in (see form below) with your sailing experiences post-lockdown. Here are a few reports:

Solent (Jul)

A word for any prospective sailors, certainly around the Solent, in the present environment you will need to book ahead for a berth. Marinas will not allow rafting. This has dramatically reduced the available berths at marinas. You will also need to book ahead (sometimes days in advance) for fuel, which also means you must get there at the appointed time. Anchoring in remote bays seems to be more common, so having a non-rusty anchor chain (we had to chop a metre off Sea Essay’s) and holding tank may prove invaluable.

Day sailing around the Fal (20-21 Jul)

Boat hire operating from Mylor Marina with timed slots for arrival and departure but offering less boats. Not taking deposits on bookings this year. Usual covid warning signs everywhere. Witnessed all boats and life jackets being carefully sanitised with milton. Found the waters quieter than expected. No shortage of moorings in the Helford River for example. We were made welcome for a short stay on the visitors pontoons in Falmouth without booking ahead. One way system marked out on pontoons. No rafting allowed.

Charter out of Plymouth (19-24 Sep)

Plymouth Yacht Haven and local facilities were operating as normally as one would expect including excellent showers but activity seemed very subdued.

Yealm (20 Sep) – As beautiful as usual. Managed to get the last berth on the pontoon at Newton Ferrers. No one rafting. Most moorings taken.

Dartmouth – Plenty of space on visitor’s pontoons. River quite busy. Some tourist trips eg Steam Train and Paddle steamer seemed to be running but town was quiet. Yacht clubs and marina not offering showers to visitors. Showers behind bandstand toilets.

Salcombe – Harbour almost deserted. One of three visiting yachts surrounded by available moorings. No sign of the Hbr Master.