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

Sunday 31 December 2023

Happy New Year to you all

 Happy New Year to you all wherever you may be on our wonderful, special planet.🎄🎅🎇

I'm afraid to look back to the post I did this time last year. It was a list of 'new year resolutions' for 2023 with regard to sailing. I'm pretty sure it will be the same as the one below for forthcoming 2024, but here we go anyway....

  1. fix the trailer so the boat doesn't keep jamming on it
  2. sail down to Fowey and up to Lostwithiel
  3. sail around to Salcombe and then on around Start Point and over to the Dart, up to Totnes
  4. sail from Totnes back down the Dart and around to Torbay
  5. learn to do better sail trimming
  6. revise and relearn everything I've forgotten about inshore passage planning 😕
  7. decide whether to replace some of the cleats in the cockpit
  8. re-bolt the stern cleats
  9. get one night time shot of Arwen dried out on a beach under the milky way!
  10. do a better job as one of the admins of the Small Traditional Sailing Boat Facebook group. My other admin colleagues have been very kind and forgiving of my lack of contribution in recent months and I owe it to them to put this right in 2024. 
If you haven't yet found this Facebook forum group - look it up - a wonderful group 12,000 strong of kind, good humoured, talented people.  I mean on what other facebook group forum would you get
  • #campingafloat (on monday)
  • #artontuesday
  • #saturdayisdetailday
  • #boatofthemonth
  • #telltales - intriguing stories and history behind your boat
  • #burgee - where's your boat been - post a picture
  • #bookonthehook - your best inspiring reads...nautically themed
  • #practicalprojects
All to do with small traditional sailing boats - and that's a broad church so to speak! 

Happy new year to you all. Fair warm winds and calm seas to all my sailing friends and of course, clear skies to all my astrophotography and astronomy ones. 

Steve and Arwen 

and I leave you with the some of the photos I am most proud of from 2023. It took blood, sweat, tears and mountains of new learning to achieve these ...... 😄

Sunday 24 December 2023

A break in the clouds

 The weather has been awful recently but I caught a lucky break tonight .... A gap in the clouds ..    

And so I can confirm. Santa is definitely on his way.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your families. May your festivities be wonderful. 

Thursday 21 December 2023

A few astrophotography images from the last few weeks

 I have been learning a new astrophotography program called S.I.R.I.L 

It is wonderful - it does all the processing and then simplifies processing in affinity photo.

So here are those few images:

M42 Orion nebula

The Rosette nebula

The Veil nebula