Cruise to the River Blackwater 10 May 2022
RCYC Cruiser Fleet – Cruise to the River Blackwater – Friday 6th – Sunday 8th May 2022.
Brightlingsea was chosen as the destination with an overnight stay on the Visitors Pontoon for both Friday the 6th and Saturday 7th. Although the pontoon is across the river from the town there is an excellent Water Taxi service run by the harbour and also excellent shore based facilities.
With fin keels ‘Voyager’ and ‘Sonja’ chose the route through the Spitway as did ‘Bright Spark’ and ‘Tamara’. ‘Nightsong’ with her lifting keel and ‘Boscalina’ waited for sufficient tide to enable them to cross the Ray Sand. Although the visibility was poor the weather was fine with favourable winds.
Afternoon drinks were hosted by various boats and later most of the crews tucked into pre-ordered seafood platters from Colchester Oyster Fishery hosted by ‘Nightsong’ and ‘Boscalina’. As is the norm with Cruiser Fleet on-board dinners conversation and a few more drinks continued late into the evening. A big thank you to Harry Bird for organising the delivery of the Seafood.
Grey skies and rain featured on Saturday morning. Although the rain looked set to last ‘Nightsong’ was still keen to make the planned afternoon journey to Wivenhoe, again taking advantage of her lifting keel. Crews from ‘Sonja’ and ‘Voyager’ hitched a ride, some folk were in the cabin but the most hardy individuals braved the elements on deck.
With Nightsong securely moored to the WSC pontoon the rain stopped, the sun came out and those from the cabin stepped ashore wearing a huge smile.
Our wet weather gear made it unlikely that we could gate crash the wedding being held at the Wivenhoe Sailing club without being easily identified so following the advice and directions of a WSC Officer we found our way to the ‘Black Buoy’ Public House in the town. Here a draught beer appropriately named ‘Number one’ from the Colchester Brewery got rave reviews from those in the crew who have great experience in these matters.
While ‘Nightsong’ was away there had been some further Cruiser Fleet boat movements. ‘Bright Spark’ had returned to Burnham as two of the crew were leaving for Portugal early on Monday. Meanwhile ‘Coco’, ‘Trinco’ and ‘Buttercup’ braved the rain to make the journey from Burnham to join us in Brightlingsea.
Between them Peter Hooper and Andy wood-Hill managed, against the odds, to book a table for 19 and a dog for Saturday evening dining in the town. The Yachtsmans Arms did not disappoint.
On Sunday morning the sun shone, a fresh breeze blew from the right direction (North East) and so the first Cruiser Fleet waterborne event of 2022 ended with a delightful return journey to Burnham.
‘Nightsong’ – Southerley 46RS – Chris & Jackie Goodfellow, Tom Keeper, Steve Barham.
‘Voyager’ – Dufour Classic 32 – Simon & Sarah Sanders.
‘Sonja’ – Dehler 35 – Arthur & Anne Heasley.
‘Coco’ – Sun Odysey 33i – David & Jack Page, Paul Van Damme. (Saturday and Sunday only)
‘Trinco’ – Contessa 26 – Peter & Caroline Hooper. (Saturday and Sunday only)
‘Boscolina’ – Sealine SC35 – Andy & Gina Wood-Hill.
‘Tamara’ – Skilso 975 – Harry & Leslie Bird.
‘Bright Spark’ – Nimbus 280 – Ken Smith, Bill & John Scott. (Friday and Saturday only)
‘Buttercup’ – Corvette 320 – Tim & Toby Howard. (Saturday and Sunday only)
Steve Barham – Cruiser Fleet Captain.
9th May 2022