Mooring in the marina

Fri 6 Jul 2012 16:01
It's been good to be in a Marina for a while, we've only had one night in one since leaving Weymouth, when we went to Mylor in search of an electrician. Shore power plugged in means we can use any electrical appliance without turning on the generator, we can top up the water tanks from the tap anytime so we can use as much as we want. So Phill's using the hot knife right now to do some rope work, we've been doing the washing on a continuous basis (it feels) and we can shower when ever we feel like it!

However, after having the customs man on board to check us in, we were sent off the arrivals pontoon to the visitors pontoons. The fingers only came at best 3/4 of the way along our side (and were really wobbly! Just a single float in the middle of them so when you jump onto them... I got a cheer from the other boat owners for having stayed on my feet the first time I jumped). The second day one of the harbour masters asked if we wanted to move onto the hammer head - the double length finger on the end of a pontoon, but the  in the middle of it the end of the pontoon jutted out a bit, and the fingers got narrower as you go along them, so we'd have had only a few feet alongside us so we decided to stay put.

Not a great choice, next day the wind blew up and we were being pushed along the finger onto the pontoon. The finger was so short we couldn't put a decent spring in place to hold us back. We had to move, but by this time a big trimaran had been towed in by the coastguard and was on the hammer head. The Harbour Master suggested we go to one further in the marina, although we were a bit worried it wouldn't be deep enough. A gentle "It's best to move on the first day, before the wind comes" was the closest he got to a 'I told you so!" We moved over all fine, the Harbour Master checked and came back to say it should be 2.7m at it's lowest, we draw 2m so all should be fine.

The low tide was due about 1am, we sat up watching the depth sounder... it's placed 90cm below the water line so if we saw 1.1m we would be just about touching. We saw 1.2m - 10cm off touching. We'd checked with a plumb line so we knew we were reading correctly, and when it got to about 1.4m we started emptying the water tanks to try to lighten us a bit... the next step would have been anchor and chain overboard, and after that.. well.. I'm glad we stayed afloat. 

It was the lowest tide due for the rest of the year, so we now know we don't have to worry for the next couple of days whilst we're still here.