Arwen's meanderings

Hi everyone and welcome to my dinghy cruising blog about my John Welsford designed 'navigator' named Arwen. Built over three years, Arwen was launched in August 2007. She is a standing lug yawl 14' 6" in length. This blog records our dinghy cruising voyages together around the coastal waters of SW England.
Arwen has an associated YouTube channel so visit to find our most recent cruises and click subscribe.
On this blog you will find posts about dinghy cruising locations, accounts of our voyages, maintenance tips and 'How to's' ranging from rigging standing lug sails and building galley boxes to using 'anchor buddies' and creating 'pilotage notes'. I hope you find something that inspires you to get out on the water in your boat. Drop us a comment and happy sailing.
Steve and Arwen

Monday, 15 February 2021

Astronomy up the creeks

 I am awaiting my new telescope. A new hobby I'm taking up. It will travel with me when we go motorhoming in Bryony

But, and I know it sounds stupid, but what if it could accompany me upriver....the Arwen

There are some lovely spots with minimal light pollution and some big open skies; some framed with stupendous viaducts; others with mill houses. There are some little marsh creeks, where there is sufficient hard ground or a hidden crumbling quayside where I could stand a tripod mounted scope securely. Certainly plenty of good spots for some landscape astrophotography at the very least.  

Anyway, to this end, here are some posts I've written about my tentative footsteps into the world of astronomy. I will post blogs at a later date about my tentative steps into the world of marine landscape astrophotography when I have got my head around it. For now, most of my reading time is focused on getting to grips with the night sky constellations, lists of deep space objects and working out how to use a computerized GOTO mount system. 

I also rashly signed up to some OU courses on astronomy as well! 

You can find my first blogs about beginning with a telescope here at

In the meantime, aside of reading 'Turn Left at Orion', I have also been reading a fascinating book about the history of the Tamar valley. It's made me think a deeper exploration of my local river system is required. I normally sail straight up the rivers to their headwaters, bypassing lots of interesting places.

So this year when lock down is lifted I intend exploring the marshes, lakes, creeks, tributaries, nooks and crannies of the river Tamar. Along the way I will stop off  and take time to explore the history of this extraordinary place. 

More in future posts but you can access videos of my recent cruises up the Tamar and Lynher here 

Start with this short appetiser 😉😁 Here's to getting back out of lock down and back onto the water. Fair winds everyone. 


JP said...

OMG, video looks amazing!

BTW, did you consider the move shoot move star tracker? I've been wondering if that would work with my camera setup. A full telescope seems overkill for London given the weight, size and light-pollution

steve said...

Hey JP - how you doing.
I have just started astrophotography - literally took my first photo today. i have been participating in gostargazinglive dark skies festival for the last two weeks - some excellent zoom speakers. None of them use any form of tracker - but then they are all landscape astrophotographers. I do like the look of the one you have mentioned - so I am off to investigate further

JP said...

I 'm tempted to get a star tracker as I've seen some great shots taken from London just by having long exposures and/or stacking. It might have to be my next present to myself, though have just broken a lens so fixing/replacing it might have to take priority.

The move shoot move star tracker, I heard via the Alyn Wallace YouTube channel:

Full of good tips!

steve said...

You have set me off on this one as well JP - I'm off investigating. let me know what you end up thinking is a good one. I am still awaiting my telescope at the moment. The date for delivery hs been pushed back twice and is now late March - so frustrating - due to pandemic and BREXIT unfortunately. On the other hand, I am very lucky to be able to afford one so I'm not moaning in anyway.