Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Stonehaven to Peterhead

After the last posting here I spent an idle day recovering while double filtering the fuel out of and back into the petrol tank while waiting for there to be a little less North or East in the weather forecast. There was some really nasty gunk came out of the tank so in future I will always filter the fuel as I fill the tank. It is surprising what muck we must be filling our cars with these days.

Listening to the shipping forecast was the news I yearned for, the weather for tomorrow the 7th would have more East in it and it was forecast to go South East or South West during the day. All sounded good for aiding my passage North East towards Peterhead, 35 miles distant up the coast.
As soon as I got out into the bay at Stonehaven I realised that this was going to be another long day. The sea was quite choppy with the wind slightly North of East, pah, the forecasters had it wrong again. Still I could make progress as long as the wind did not go any further North, it was forecast to go SE or SW soon.
Note the new salt stained 'up the nose' video technique.
I wonder if the BBC will take this on?
The waves were at times worse than featured here, 
I just didn't feel like videoing them at the time :-)

After 10 miles I saw the lighthouse off of Aberdeen, when I say I saw the lighthouse, I actually caught glimpses of it as it kept bobbing in an out of view as I rose and fell off of waves and into the holes between them. This was probably the roughest sea I have been out in Ruach and she performed excellently, looking after me in these challenging conditions (Thanks to Roger Dongray her designer and Cornish Crabbers her builders). I’m pleased to say I felt very safe wedged into the corner of the cockpit.

After passing Aberdeen there were another 25 miles of being soaked with spray and rain, the visibility dropped to a point that all I could see around me was my little patch of sea with the rain robbing me of any sight of the land about a mile and a bit to my left (port). The wind never did go South for me, so after spending the day on one tack, fighting a heavy helm I eventually headed into Peterhead harbour, then Peterhead marina where the assistant harbourmaster was waiting to take my lines on the pontoon. A very welcome sight as it had been a long day and I was very wet and tired. After tying up I headed for the shower block to get a little warmer and dryer by standing under the shower (think about it, it had been a very wet day), I realised that the whole shower block was swaying, or was that just me?
I cooked up, (well heated up) a tasty mushroom stroganoff from my supplies of Look what we found dishes before heading off for a well earned sleep.

The next day was earmarked to be a laundry day. Apparently the laundry equipment was purchased by the marina but is situated in a campsite. Now if I could walk on water this would have been a 200m stroll, however by pontoon and land this was about a mile away across the bay. So I set off with laundry bag in hand for the campsite. I had been told that if no one was available in the office to go to the green caravan where the manager resided. I arrived at the camp office to see a note in the window 'Manager off site, for attention see caravan nine or fourteen'. So off I strolled, bag in hand, to caravan number nine. Knock knock - No response. Then off to number fourteen knockerty knock knock - still no response. Tried the managers caravan - nothing. I loitered around for about an hour basking in the warm sunshine before heading back to the boat, still bag of dirty laundry in hand. Oh well, another day.

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Catch you next time.

David H.