Summer Cruise report. Dublin to New Ross
It is now Sunday 22nd July and most boats have returned to roost. We set off last Saturday 14th , with 17 boats on the register. We arrived in Arklow on Saturday afternoon and were well received by the sailing club there - newly refurbished and very nicely done. Dinner in Christies followed with a few returning to the sailing club for night caps. An early start the next day to catch the tide to Kilmore Quay. The forecast was for westerlies for the next few days - not great if you are headed that way!
A great sail down the banks in flat seas was enjoyed by all, but in the afternoon apporaching Carnsore the wind got up to 25kts and the seas were running about 1.5 m. It was a bumpy ride to Kilmore but most made it there. An excellent meal followed in the Silver Fox. The wind was not favourable for the next let to Dunmore East where we had a BBQ booked. At 0900 we met on the pier and with a 20-25 knot westerly and the Tower Race around the Hook ahead, a decision was made to abandon sailing that day. Instead we went by coach to the Hook Light museum and were happy, seeing the massive seas there, that we had not set sail!
Next morning we met again at 0900 but now we had 200 m in fog and the wind still there. The coach was re-ordered and we went to Dunmore East for our BBQ as planned but instead of 18nm by sea, it was 110km by road through New Ross! And 110 back of course. We alleviated the pain of this by going to Passage East and taking the ferry across where the coach picked us up. Still, we fulfilled our ambition to get to Dunmore and the sailing club and The Spinnaker welcomed us. We met a local man- Rene Huber- who will become our contact in Dunmore East in future - he seems to know everyone! Do not be misled by rumour. Dunmore East is open for business and you can get a mooring or a berth there with a bit of local help.
By now the plan to reach New Ross was not on the table for those due back on the following Sunday. So, the fleet split into those with more time, and those without. 7 boats sailed for Arklow that Wednesday in spectacular weather - four seasons in one day and massive thunderstorms.
Four went on to Waterford ( of which two made it to New Ross) and one went to the Scillies. Two stayed in Kilmore awaiting new crew.
Of those who returned, we overnighted Arklow on Wednesday, Wicklow on Thurday and back to Dublin by Friday afternoon. The last four rafted at the marina and had an excellent al fresco afternoon, and drinks at the RIYC . Tom Overs(Little Ship) and James Kinsella (Saskia) returned to the Menai.
Father Derek set sail on Saturday for Arklow from Kilmore and arrived there in record time. He is due back home on Sunday.
The cruise was a lot of fun, and quite challenging at times. It was a pity for those of us who did not to reach our destination but this is Ireland and we do live in prevailing westerlies. That always makes a trip down the south coast difficult but, in all the years I have done that trip, I have never failed to reach Dunmore. Cork and Kinsale, I have failed to reach a few times being 60 miles to windward, but Dunmore? This time the strong winds and Tower Race meant that we lost two days in Kilmore - pleasant as they were.
Lessons? Well, if we were to do it again, I would allow a bit more time, and perhaps plan to leave the boat in Waterford (cheap marina) so as to lengthen the time available. A weather window to round the Hook always comes up and indeed the rest of the fleet did get around on the Thursday - three days later than planned.
My sincere thanks to all those who helped to plan this cruise - this year we allocated a committee member to each leg and it worked well.
17 boats was a great turnout.
See you at the Tall Ships at the end of August when we will have three events
1 Sail out to welcome ships coming in
2 Raft up in Poolbeg for 3 days or in Grand Canal Basin - or is that now Bord Gais Energy Basin? Poolbeg have a variety of fun events and music , craic etc.
3 Sail out on the Sunday to say goodbye to the ships.
Kind regards to all