Arrived Mayflower Marina, Plymouth

Ocean Gem
Geoff & Eileen Mander
Mon 3 Jul 2017 20:39
Date: Monday 3rd July 2017
Position: 50:21.838N 4:09.998W

Port la Forêt was a beautiful tranquil place with the attractive village of La Forêt Fouesnant just a short walk away.





Whilst we were there it had been overcast and surprisingly cold.  It was the height of summer and yet we were dressed in thermals and with the heater on in the boat.

By Tuesday 2nd July the strong winds sweeping in from Biscay had moderated so we left at around 8:00am bound for the UK. It was still cold but by now there was very little wind and the visibility was poor with light drizzle and mist.  We were motoring again.  We carried on through the gloom passing various rocks and buoys, occasionally another boat would suddenly appear out of the fog just a few metres away.  At one stage we could see on the radar another boat approaching at speed.  As it got closer I could see something but it didn’t look like a boat.  I could see a large bow wave and a turbulence where a propellor was kicking up a big wake, but no boat.  Then as it got closer I could see the outline of a French Customs launch, unfortunately painted the same grey/green colour as the fog.

I’d calculated to get to the Raz de Sein at slack water and from there to the Chenal du Four we carried a tide with us, although being close to neaps it was only modest at around 2 knots. At around 10:00pm we cleared the NW French cost and headed towards the UK.

There was a lot of shipping in the channel. We were out of the official shipping channels but the ships seemed to group together in packs which made it very difficult to work our way between them.  Here's an image from our chart plotter showing the traffic we had to deal with.


Towards mid channel the wind increased to the point where we could turn off the engine and sail.  In this way we continued to Plymouth arriving at around 2:30pm.