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

Tuesday, 2 March 2021

Arwen gets a spring clean

 I got out in Arwen four times during 2020. That is our worst sailing year together. The reasons are obvious - a number of lock downs, but even so!

My first trip was 24th June and we did a five hour sail around Plymouth Sound in ESE to SE winds at a steady 10 knots with gusts up to 18kts. It was a 4.8m outgoing tide.

The second trip was 1st August. six hours sailing in F3/4 winds with gusts to F5. We went out to Draystone Buoy and Rame Head and it was very rolly. I remember that trip - I was seasick. I fell on a hatch badly and hurt my knee. The reefing system broke.  

We went out again on the 8th and then the 13th August as well. The first trip I was accompanied by Mag, her annual boat trip. Over to Cawsands, cup of coffee, sail back along the outer breakwater. Light winds, cloudless skies, 24C.  

On the last trip I was seeking out the porpoise, the tuna shoals and Minke whales. Found all except the whales. Could hear them but couldn't see them. Got some great views of diving gannets and two sunfish, so that was a good bonus. Nice SSW breeze, very light. Apparently I went up to three miles past the breakwater on the way to the Eddystone lighthouse.

Well, with the PM announcing his road map I hope to do more sailing this year than last. Admittedly there are some trip away in the motorhome that interfere with sailing plans but I should get a huge chunk of the summer. I should be able to go out on the water again from March 8th. 

And towards that aim, Arwen came off the drive for the first time since August. She was as you can see from the video, in a bit of a state. However, four hours later and she was clean, well clean-ish, with some areas for maintenance identified and her interior lockers tidied up. 

It was good to get back on board her even if it was just dream sailing along our road! 

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