Arwen's meanderings

Hi everyone and welcome to my new blog. My name is Steve and i am the lucky owner of a John Welsford designed 'navigator' named Arwen. I built her over three years with the help of my father, father-in-law and two children. She was launched in August 2007 at Queen Anne's battery marina in the barbican area of Plymouth. This blog is a record of our voyages together around SW England.
Arwen has a YouTube channel of her own. Search "plymouthwelshboy".

Monday, 27 July 2015

Mylor Creek and its boat yard: Falmouth Adventures Day One

The boat yard was down a narrow lane and I missed it! No signs to show where it was. As I reversed the boat in a narrow lane at five ways junction, I wondered how many other boat towers had had to make the same manoeuvre. Must provide locals with hours of amusement!

Reception was in a converted green shipping crate with a wooden bridge off some old boat on top of it. Rather quirky - I liked it! The welcome was warm, friendly but business like and good humoured. A great start to our adventures.

A traditional boatyard with lots going on. Different smells carried on the air; freshly planed wood; sawdust, paraffin; tung oil and fresh paint. several sheds, some old shipping containers and one or two large white tarpaulin type sheds. Lots of young people in their early twenties and thirties busying around with various tools. In one tarpaulin shed, a young gent was re-planking a long boat - traditional carvel - it's bare ribs poking skywards.

moored at a vacant buoy whilst final shifting of on-board camping gear
takes place to get better trim and balance

The slipway was about two car widths wide and ran between what looked like a very old and very large old rusting landing craft of some form (or perhaps a barge) and then a quayside on the other. two floating pontoons at the high water mark; and another through a narrow inlet on the outside in the creek. A gentle gradient - it was protected from winds and you launch 2 hrs either side of high water on neaps. There was space for parking car and trailer although on this occasion I had to park tight against one of the tarpaulin sheds as a Drascombe rally had taken up other spaces.

I always pack too much.....never did as a mountaineer....but as a sailor....the same minimalism just doesn't seem to apply itself!  On the port side, sleeping, cooking gear, food and spare clothes. Under the deck, tarp tent, clips for tent, spare fenders. On starboard side, spare boat cushions, boom crutch, mooring warps, main anchor and ditty bag with all sorts of bits and pieces and food for the day sail.
way too much.......way, way too much......only going for four days!

A hidden gem of  yard; open at weekends and I must say I rather liked it. £50 for self launch and retrieval and leaving car and trailer for four days. Given it costs me £18 each time I launch and retrieval at QAB for the day - it seemed a reasonable rate.

Mylor Creek meandered eastwards. Lined either side with stunning waterfront properties, small boat moorings filled it's lower half. the water was a deep green and so clean; as Arwen motored gently east, a stunning 16' gaff rigged day boat followed her out, light blue hull and tan sails. Waves exchanged, Arwen and I headed around the bend and into the Mylor Yacht Haven moorings. Past the fishing quay and public slip, we searched out the fairway between the large number of linear moorings. The breezes began to pick up and Arwen surged forward, the sounds of the open seas beckoning her forward.

Its a good start to our annual 'micro adventure'.


Alastair said...

The public slip is free (usable HW+- 4h). The Yacht Haven charge £5 a day for cars and £3 for trailers.

steve said...

I'll remember that for next time Alastair - thanks for the tip. I want to go back and sail up the Percueil river, sail across to the Helford and explore that and sail up the coast to Fowey and back as well.

In the meantime, I'm hoping to sail from Salcombe around to Dartmouth and up to Totnes before I return to School at the start of September.


Alastair said...

There is a DCA rally on the Salcombe estuary on the W/E 12 Sept and another at Restronguet on W/E 10 October.

steve said...

Thanks Alastair. Can't make the first one due to other commitments. Might be able to make the second one though