Wind and tide

Our thoughts are with the families of those who lost their lives in yesterday’s extreme weather.

In Teignmouth, we were on the edge of it.


Blue Mistress was snug, but the wind was blowing downriver and the incoming tide made for choppy water. In these conditions, there is a tendency for the boat to ride onto the mooring buoy. This has damaged the bow in the past. Padding the shackle and swivel has helped.


The two rows of moorings in the centre of the stream are swing moorings, the shallower moorings at the edge of the stream are fore-and-aft. The long keels of the Folksong and the Contessa 26 are holding the vessels more or less to the tide, whereas the three fin-keeled yachts beyond them are being swung by the wind.


The effect of the wind against the tide is more obvious here. The wind is pushing the two bigger yachts side on to the tide, hence the heeling. The gentleman aboard the far boat is waiting for it to float.

All the while, the bridge was whistling.

Images by Bill Whateley

A short passage along the Jurassic Coast – day four

On Saturday, the wind was still heading me, although a direct tack out to sea allowed a long tack back into, and west along, the coast. An approaching front appeared as forecast as the long tack took me into Beer Roads.

(Click on image for short slideshow)

I tacked close to the beach and headed out to sea again. The next tack would have taken Blue Mistress all the way to Teignmouth had the wind not veered when we were off Straight Point, between Exmouth and Budleigh Salterton. I lost interest in photography at this stage and concentrated on the beat along the final 10 miles.

. . . end

Images by Bill Whateley


A short passage along the Jurassic Coast – day three

The following day, the sun shone, the wind headed us at a steady 2-3 bft and I returned to Lyme Regis, tacking off then on to the coast, no great distance (about 7 nm), no time to keep,  a perfect morning’s sail. I sat back, enjoyed the sailing, took only a few photographs.

(Click on image to start slideshow)

To be continued . . .

Images by Bill Whateley

A short passage along the Jurassic Coast in images – day two

On Thursday, I made a shorter passage from Lyme Regis to West Bay. At both Lyme Regis and West Bay, the harbourmasters and teams were both friendly and helpful.

(Click on image to start slide show)

To be continued . . .

Images by Bill Whateley

A short passage along the Jurassic Coast in images – day one

On Wednesday,  I sailed from Teignmouth towards Lyme Regis on a planned four-day visit along the Jurassic Coast. The object was to view the coast from the sea – to see red cliffs, white cliffs, yellow cliffs, grey cliffs, and the small communities in between – to try and photograph them regardless of the weather.

(Click on image for slide show)

To be continued . . .

Images by Bill Whateley

The windvane – four short clips

The windvane on Blue Mistress was damaged at the end of last year. A small yacht misjudged leaving the visitors’ pontoon in Dartmouth and ran onto it – “altering the shape” of it. This year I have been watching it closely in different conditions to check there has been no lasting damage. I took these short clips off Teignmouth earlier this month.

The wind was gusting strongly – (note the untidy lines), and I thought I’d record the effect of the gusts on the self-steering gear. In the second clip, the boat is heading higher than I wanted. In the third clip,  I have adjusted the windvane to correct direction. A stronger gust then brings the boat up into the wind. In the fourth clip, I have adjusted the sails slightly. This works.

 Video clips by Bill Whateley

A boat in Teignmouth

I have been getting used to new surroundings – new for Blue Mistress that is. No longer the city of Plymouth, but the town of Teignmouth – two ports, different aspects.

We too have wharves . . .


and buildings along the water’s edge . . .


and good pubs.


The entrance is interesting with shifting sandbanks meaning work for the dredger . . .


The sailing is less crowded . . .


Teignmouth is not only a holiday resort but a working port . . .


Vessels negotiate an awkward entrance.


Once in, their presence “alters the shape” of the town.


They continue the long tradition with this as with every other port – looking outwards, trading with other ports, both home, as with Celtic Ambassador, and abroad . . .


I am going to enjoy sailing from here.


(Images by Bill Whateley)



From Plymouth to Teignmouth – a new mooring

Blue Mistress and I left Plymouth early on Saturday morning.


The wind was favourable but the tide was still ebbing at the Great Mew Stone . . .

P1080026. . . and would be against us until Bolt Head, where the tide would turn but the wind would begin to head us. Both wind and sea rose at Start Point and pushed us further out sea before we tacked back towards Dartmouth, arriving just over nine hours after leaving Plymouth.

Overnight in Kingswear, looking across to Dartmouth, then the following morning . . .


. . . with little wind, and joined by my son, we motor-sailed to Teignmouth, an amiable passage, arriving around 1400.


Monday morning, we have a swing mooring – and a fresh start.


(Images by Bill Whateley)