A short passage to Dartmouth

4 – A mooring in Salcombe

Ever curious, I have been asking myself about single-handed sailing and why I enjoy it so much. The fact that I am reflecting on this at all is a clue in itself. I will enlarge on this later.

What brought this on was the image below of a diminutive Blue Mistress moored among a sociable fleet of smart yachts in Salcombe and the acknowledgement that this is not a suitable haunt for the sailor who seeks solitude.

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Plymouth to Salcombe

This series of five posts outlines a September passage from Plymouth to Teignmouth and back.

My son had a few days holiday owing and wanted to sail. We had a choice of Falmouth or Teignmouth. The wind direction and tides suited Teignmouth. To add interest on the way, we decided to overnight in Salcombe and Torquay. He was going to leave the boat in Teignmouth and I was going to return to Plymouth alone. In the event, we were weather-bound in Teignmouth for a week. A family holiday was imminent, so when the weather eventually eased, I had only a short time to return Blue Mistress to Plymouth. I planned a direct passage to Salcombe, to overnight there and then on to Plymouth. As it happened, I had a major problem off Berry Head which completely altered my passage plan.


(Click on image to enlarge. Double click magnifies)

04. Plymouth to Salcombe

If we had had a trip in which we fell out with each other, I would probably not have mentioned this, but we had a good time and I want to acknowledge it.

For a single-hander having someone aboard adds a whole extra dimension. The boat has been set up for one person. Ropes and gear have been placed to-hand and manoeuvers thought through in advance so that much of the routine on the boat has become automatic to me. I’m ahead of the game – most of the time. Few people want to be a passenger on a small boat, they want to be part of the crew. Therefore, having another person on board, someone who will inevitably do things differently, means my having to stand back and create ‘space’ for them to do it. How much space depends on the person.

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