Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Keyhaven to Ramsgate

Hi everyone,
We arrived in Ramsgate at 1800 this evening after a 29 hour passage from Keyhaven.  We had great weather - sunny with only occasional high cloud.  The passage took us nearly half way towards Zen Again's new home.

Here are the usual plots...

Zen Again track
Zen Again speed
Once again the speed plot shows the effect of tide, and also the effect of the wind dropping out and the engine coming on.  We had a lovely sail through the Solent from west to east, carrying the tide with us as far as Cowes and then working through adverse tide for 6 hours.  From Selsey Bill to Dungeness we had the tide with us and from there to Dover it was against us again.  From Dover the tide was with us once more and hurried us home.

Here are the vital statistics...
  • Distances/Speeds
    • Route Distance = 150nm
    • Logged Distance = 157nm
    • GPS Distance = 143nm
    • Duration = 29 hours
    • Average boat speed = 5.4kt
    • Average ground speed = 4.9kt
  • Weather
    • Minimum wind speed = 2 kt
    • Average wind speed = 10 kt
    • Maximum wind speed = 20 kt
    • Apparent wind angle range = 90 to 180
    • Seas up to 1.5m
    • Sunny with some high cloud
  • Engine
    • Total = 9 hours
    • Driving = 9 hours
    • Charging = 0 hours

We spent much of last week travelling around the country to attend interviews and visit family.  Amazingly the first interview yielded a job, so suddenly we needed to get the boat moving towards its new home.  We got back to Keyhaven on Sunday and set to preparing the boat for departure.

Hurst Castle from the mooring on Sunday evening 
Keelboats can only enter and leave Keyhaven close to high tide so we could not depart until the early afternoon.  By the time we got out there was only a couple of hours of easterly current but that hurried us along past Cowes.  It was great sailing down the Solent with yachts, ferries and big ships passing by.

Passing Cowes
We sailed east through Spithead and past the row of old forts which protected the eastern entrance to the Solent.  The tide was against us here, which gave us more time to admire the view.

No Man's Land fort in Spithead
The nice SW wind gradually veered to the NW overnight.  For a while it looked like we'd have to motor but the NW land breeze came in and we had a very pleasant sail overnight.  By 0600 the land breeze had died and our boat speed was down to 3 knots.  The engine went on and stayed on until 1430 when we were approaching Dover.  Happily we didn't need to dodge any of the ferries.

Passing Dover
The last leg from Dover to Ramsgate was very nice with help from the tide and nice flat water.  The last 1/2 mile was interesting with a 2 knot tidal current across the harbour entrance.

In a pen at Ramsgate Marina
We expect to stay here in Ramsgate for up to a week, spending a few days away visiting relatives in Kent.  After that we'll be heading north.

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