Thursday 7th June: Sailing from Beaulieu to Poole
Updated: Jun 16, 2018
The day dawned overcast but we were finally ready to start our odyssey and so, after setting the jib, we slipped our lines at 0700 to catch the last of the ebb tide out of the Solent and off to Poole. It had been a manic rush to get to this point, fitting new batteries, having one fail, packing, repacking and re-repacking the boat and putting spare gear into storage, but now it was just us, the boat and the river and as we motored gently along we had time to reflect on the fact that the project was really happening - we were actually doing this!
Hauling the furler and tack of the jib to the end of the bowsprit
As we turned onto the final leg of the river before it joins the Solent the wind was more or less on the nose so we hauled up our 1000 sq foot mainsail and with this, the engine and the tide encouraging us along we headed for Hurst Narrows and out to sea avoiding the Shingles Bank via the North Channel. The wind was light and so we set the topsail, staysail and our largest jib and set a course for Poole harbour entrance. Sadly what little breeze there was soon died and as we were making only 2 knots we decided to start up the iron topsail (our engine) to get us to Poole in plenty of time to set up for the boat show the next day. We were soon steaming along, past Christchurch and Bournemouth and then into Poole entrance channel which runs alongside Studland Beach and in to Poole Harbour itself.
Red lateral mark on the way into Poole Harbour
Poole Harbour is Amelie Rose’s port of registration as Nick ran her as a charter boat from here for 7 years and so a visit here always feels to him a bit like a homecoming and Amelie Rose certainly seemed at home with cheery waves from a passing fishing boat owner. Soon we were passing Aunt Betty buoy and we dropped the rig (lowering sails) at the entrance to Port of Poole. With the sails stowed, we prepared our mooring lines and with fender boards out to protect our fenders from the rough quay wall we moored on Poole Town Quay right next to Queen Galadriel - bowsprit to bowsprit looking a little like two wooden knights engaged in a jousting match!
That evening we were joined by Amelie Rose’s friend and chief sail fixer, Bee, who brought along more concrete evidence that our project is more than just a website - our information boards which we’d had delivered to her as we’d run out of time to get them shipped to us in Beaulieu. There are two boards, one about the project, detailing the route and explaining the whys and wherefores of the Odyssey, and the other with information and pictures about Amelie Rose. She’s a beautiful boat and draws many people so these help us answer some of the many questions that we normally get when she’s alongside.
Our project information boards in place ready for Poole Harbour Boat Show
Odyssey Log: 26.7 nm
Total Engine Hours: 6 hours :(