Yacht Pipit


Camaret, 15th August 2010

Well if our previous two sails were idyllic and exciting, the trip from Trebeurden to L'Aber Wrac'h was, at the risk of sounding churlish, just an unpleasant chore - 10 hours and 54 miles into wind and 3m waves, the weather grey and overcast. We left Trebeurden at first light, early enough to still have enough water over the sill, and had the tide with us for the first few hours, but later had 3 knots against us for a while. We rafted in the marina at L'Aber Wrac'h for the first night, and then on Sunday moved out to a buoy in the river, and enjoyed a lazy afternoon in the cockpit in glorious sunshine - had summer returned? Alas no, Monday was cloudy and windy, and Tuesday was much worse - wet & very windy - a day for working then. As we went to bed, it was hard to believe that the fog and drizzle would be gone by morning to be replaced by sunshine and lighter north-westerly winds as forecast, but that was indeed what we awoke to on Wednesday, so at 0730 we set sail for Camaret. We had read two pilot guides and done the calculations and, departing when we did, were expecting up to 2 knots of tide against us for a couple of hours followed by 3 or 4 knots with us down the Chenal du Four, but in the event we had nothing against us and found the Chenal du Four to be slack - had we got our timings wrong? Apparently not, as people in Camaret who had made the same passage found exactly the same thing. Anyway we had a pleasant sail in sunshine for most of the trip, having to motor only for the last bit of the Chenal to ensure we were at the bottom of it before the tide turned. What happened to the 4 knots we were expecting remains a mystery...

Our arrival at Camaret was not the best; the marina was pretty full so instead of rafting, we decided to go for the last remaining alongside spot on the outside of the wave break - in hindsight this was the wrong decision. Anyway there was a 'helpful Joe' on the pontoon waiting to take our lines, so in we went, and in his eagerness to be helpful took our bowline aft rather than forward, promptly pulling the bow into the pontoon before we had a stern line on, putting a dent in our shiny new bow plate :-( A classic mistake and lesson re-learned: never assume 'helpful' people on pontoons know what they are doing. If, in this instance, we had been left to our own devices, we would have been fine as although the wind was blowing us off the pontoon, had we not been able to get close enough we would have changed plan and gone back into the marina and rafted. In fact there must be something about Camaret - we've seen more 'parking incidents' here in the last two days than in the whole of the last four months!

On Thursday morning we moved inside the marina alongside a pontoon, and spent the day shopping in the large supermarket, doing chores and starting to appreciate Camaret as being really quite a nice place, as well as trying to forget about the previous day's 'incident' - not something Andy finds easy... On Friday morning Andy worked, and in the afternoon we did a 12km walk round the Crozon peninsula south of Camaret, with fine views. It's still not very warm though :-o In the evening we enjoyed moules frites et vin in the square with two other couples from boats near us, accompanied by live music - all very pleasant, even though we all had our winter coats on...

Sunset at L'Aber Wrac'h.

If you look closely you can see Ushant...

Le Four lighthouse.

Camaret sur Mer.

Could be a Cornish beach, but actually Plage de Veryac'h.

Alignments of Lagatjar - Standing Stones near Camaret.

Monument to the Free French Forces.