The weather of late has not allowed us small boat sailors to partake in our favourite pastime. Some of the more hardy dinghy sailors have been out for a thrash around the estuary but for the more genteel sailor, the wind has been too strong for comfort.
Last week saw two ex-hurricanes (Idalia & Lee) bring wet and very windy weather to Britain and we are about to be hit again by Storm Agnes. But if Agnes goes as the forecast suggest, the weather at the weekend may well be very good for us sailing types.
Which is nice since there is an organised cruise up the Blackwater to Heybridge Basin this weekend which I would like to attend. It will put Naiad into fresh water for a day or so and that will get rid of some of the growth below the waterline.
I'm planning to drive down to the mooring on Friday morning, I've taken the day off work, and arrive around high tide so as not to need to drag the dinghy too far down the hard. Once aboard I'll complete a number of tasks and get Naiad ready to sail.
I than have a choice of what to do next.
Plan A is to leave the mooring around 16:30 (or earlier) and find somewhere to anchor in the Mersea Quarters for the night. This will allow me to sleep until low water on Saturday morning which is at 07:30. The downside is that it is just gone spring tides so I'll need to ensure that I'm close enough to shallow water that at high tide I still have enough anchor chain out.
Plan B is to stay on the mooring and leave around 05:30 on Saturday to be able to get out of the Besom Fleet and then stooge around for a couple of hours until the tide turns and I can start making my way up the estuary. The downside is the stooging around, waiting for the tide to change in light winds and a strong ebb tide.
Still, I'll keep an eye on the weather and see how things develop.