Atlantic Adventure

Monday 29th

August 29, 2011

Sailed out of Killeany Bay at dawn to see how much westing we could make on the spring ebb. A disappointing stream inshore and a rising headwind soon left us with no choice but to cross to Cashla. Picked up the last free visitor’s buoy amongst a fleet of hookers.

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Sunday 28th

August 28, 2011

The sun came out as we ventured ashore to walk over to Dun Duchathair to see the decaying cliffs. We took full advantage of the blackberries ripening along the lanes. Back on Amber Sand, our neighbour gave us a couple of fresh pollock. Sun, wind, fish and fruit for free!

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Friday 26th

August 26, 2011

We rowed ashore and set out on a circular walk of central Inishmore from Kilronan to Kilmurvey by the north coast returning by a higher southern route. A bright clear day with magnificent views over Connemara, passing meadows of wild flowers and white sand beaches and being passed by a stream of cosmopolitan cyclists. At the Spar we met Paul who had sailed into Gregory Channel alongside Amber Sand in his Wylo II “Ariel”. He invited us over to view “Ariel” and questioned us about ferrocement.

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Thursday 25th

August 25, 2011

We had a rude awakening at dawn as the second of the bridles attaching us to the buoy chafed through letting Amber Sand drift toward the lee shore. A swift engine start and deployment of a new line to a different buoy gave us time to think. We then moved to the furthest inshore buoy, launched the tender and shackled on a more substantial line. The wind gradually moderated but frequent showers kept us on board.

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Wednesday 24th

August 24, 2011

Another dawn start for the ambitious passage north to the Aran Islands. After a couple of early squalls, we needed to motor further offshore to clear the lee of the Dingle Peninsula. The squally showers kept coming through the morning; the wind was up and down. It settled to a fresh F4 rising to F5 through the afternoon as we gybed up the County Clare coast. We dropped the main to run up Gregory Channel and reach Inishmore with daylight to spare. Plenty of mooring buoys to choose from in Killeany Bay.

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Tuesday 23rd

August 23, 2011

We made a dawn start to catch the tide through Blasket Sound but had no wind. We motored right around to Smerwick Harbour and picked up a visitor’s buoy for a brunch stop. The wind kicked in for a noon sail off, passing Mount Brandon and squeezing through Magharee Sound, where we were welcomed by a family of large dolphins, to the Scraggane Bay anchorage.

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Monday 22nd

August 22, 2011

Went for a session at the Old Forge internet café then arranged the acquisition of 100 litres of diesel costing little more than our last purchase in Gibraltar. There was no wind so we motored the few miles along the coast to Ventry Harbour where with no vacant moorings we anchored for the first time since Culatra.

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Saturday 20th

August 20, 2011

Sailed out of Valentia Harbour by Doulus Head on the ebb and broadreached across Dingle Bay to catch the flood up to the marina, avoiding the tourist boats chasing Fungie. Dashed out to the shops to find gas and catch Super Saturday at Lidl.

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Thursday 18th

August 18, 2011

Rowed ashore to check out the new concrete floating breakwater pontoons: no facilities but free alongside berthing, so we moved Amber Sand into what we hoped would be better shelter for the forecast gale. Took a warm afternoon stroll up to Geokaun via the slate quarry, returning through Chapeltown and along the Portmagee Channel shore road.

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Wednesday 17th

August 17, 2011

More big blue sky and sunshine, less swell, but we had to motor around Bolus Head to find a light northerly then beat around Puffin Island and Bray Head. Again a fine day’s sailing, more comfortable if slower than yesterday, finishing with a steady close reach along Valentia Island to a tucked in visitor’s mooring off Knightstown

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