Thursday

We got up at 8.00, early for us these days, to say goodbye to Tash, Chris and Freya and to get ready to take Charlie to school.

We spent the rest of the day making the boat ready for an early start on Friday ……….. after a week in port there are always things to stow, the dinghy motor to put back on it’s bracket, the dinghy lifting strop to be replaced, spare fuel filters to be bought (at an extortionate price) a new piano to be played and safely stowed ……… enough to keep us busy for the day!

Friday

Up at 0500 for a 0600 departure……… a good omen ……. the sun was shining!

An early start.

An early start.

We sailed for the last time under the bridges

Farewell Firth of Forth

Farewell Firth of Forth

……..and set a course for Fifeness. At last some sunny weather with the wind doing the right thing! We were planning to stop in Arbroath, but with the winds favourable, we decided to push on to Peterhead.
En route we didn’t see another boat for hours and certainly no other sailing craft ……. our only companions were sea birds. Guillemots, that surface with a startled look around and then dive again before I can get a shot off

Guillemot........ now you see me, now you don't!

Guillemot…….. now you see me, now you don’t!

……… Puffins, that are tiny and very shy and disappear as soon as we get near enough for a snap and Gannets that are the Red Arrows of the bird world. They fly in formation, just above the waves, gliding, wheeling and swooping ……

Formation Flying Gannets

Formation Flying Gannets

……….to use ‘Gannet’ as a derogatory term, much maligns this master of the air!

The only two ships we saw both passed within half a mile of us. The AIS reassuringly tells us what our closest approach will be, but It always looks a bit ‘iffy’ as they get close!

Close Encounters

Close Encounters

Saturday

We sailed on through the night and arrived at 0215 in Peterhead. Two men, who had been antifouling between tides, met us on the pontoon and took our lines. The kindness of people is wonderful to experience, especially after a night sail and a sloshy entrance!!
Peterhead has it’s own small marina, tucked away in the far SW corner of the harbour with a sandy beach and sailing school……. with the sun shining we could be anywhere in the world!!!

Peterhead Marina

Peterhead Marina

After a shower and a walk into town for probably the worst fish and chips we’ve ever eaten!, we were back on board, 12 hours after we arrived, ready to sail on again through the night to get to Inverness.

Leaving Peaterhead

Leaving Peaterhead

 

All started well, but as those of you with the AIS tracker will know, we didn’t quite make it! About 5 miles past Fraserburgh, the engine started to loose power and we were only doing 2.5 knots. We thought we may have caught something around the keel, so did a series of pirouettes and retirees, to try to shift whatever seemed to be holding us back. We tried for a little longer, but the engine wouldn’t punch into the wind, so we decided to turn around and put into Fraserburgh.

This is a working port and the almanacs say they don’t cater for yachts ……… and they’re right! We were put in the South Harbour against a wall with tractor tyres, strung down on massive chains, as fenders. The first ladder we moored to turned out not to have a way off the top, so we had to drift back to one that, although wonky, did have handrails at the top…….. that was a bonus! We have some interesting tyre marks on the topsides as souvenirs of our stay. We  will have to remove them once we’re in the quieter waters of Cally Canal and can get the dinghy alondside.

And so to bed and hope that we can find some help or advice, re the engine, in the clear light of day.

3 Comments

  1. Howdie, have read your blogs and it sounds like you’ve had loads of exciting adventures already with a load more to come – all good hopefully. Charlie & Freya look gorgeous and obviously had a whale of a time on board – can’t believe the heights they went to! Seriously though, you both seem to be enjoying everything, well nearly everything, and the entertainment in the Kea Bar seems spot on. John will bring his guitar next time we meet up. Bon voyage Deborah XX

  2. Hi Mate’s check your fuel filters sounds like diesel bug or maybe just blocked good luck (call me if you need help )

  3. hayward.margie@gmail.com

    Thanks Ross ….both Racors drained, cleaned and replaced and engine filter replaced too. Once in calmer waters we will have to drain and clean the tanks. Meanwhile regular draining of the Racors to remove water and muck should do the trick (we hope)

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