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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Shropshire - Sundance, Bristol Channel
    Posts
    1,068

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Manic76 View Post
    If I am honest I am split 50/50 on being excited/terrified by the concept of BC sailing.
    That's probably the best way to be and I'm still like that after two years in the BC. It really isn't that bad if you plan where you want to go and work out times, check the weather you shouldn't go to wrong. It's no worse then many other places round the UK. Get some easy sails in first, from Cardiff you can't get any easier then up to Newport on a weekend. With a westerly you fly up with the wind behind you, and on the way back as long as you leave when there's enough water you'll make it back home to Cardiff. The club is friendly and there's a pontoon to dry out on, granted you can't really walk in to the town or do much but you get enjoy a bit of boat time if you're happy enough to cook your own grub and bed down on the boat.
    Tom, Sundance
    2wheels1keel.com

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    45

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Dutch01527 View Post
    c. £700 per year for club membership and end on pontoon mooring
    Meant to ask, which club is this?

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    45

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Yellow Ballad View Post
    That's probably the best way to be and I'm still like that after two years in the BC. It really isn't that bad if you plan where you want to go and work out times, check the weather you shouldn't go to wrong. It's no worse then many other places round the UK. Get some easy sails in first, from Cardiff you can't get any easier then up to Newport on a weekend. With a westerly you fly up with the wind behind you, and on the way back as long as you leave when there's enough water you'll make it back home to Cardiff. The club is friendly and there's a pontoon to dry out on, granted you can't really walk in to the town or do much but you get enjoy a bit of boat time if you're happy enough to cook your own grub and bed down on the boat.
    Sounds good. Are you referring to the Newport and Uskmouth sailing club as a stopover? Does that cost?

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Shropshire - Sundance, Bristol Channel
    Posts
    1,068

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Manic76 View Post
    Sounds good. Are you referring to the Newport and Uskmouth sailing club as a stopover? Does that cost?
    Yes, NUSC, like I say has to be the easiest sail in the channel from Cardiff as long as you follow the cones and cans either end and give any ships a wide berth in the river you'll be ok. (word of warning if you go in to the Pill don't go past the pontoon there's low power cables, but the river pontoon is where you want to be in a bilge). They don't charge for visitors but I'm sure if you buy a beer or two in the bar if it's open they wouldn't say no. If you see someone, pop over and say hello, I'm sure they will get the kettle on. If you call or email the club I'm sure someone can give you better information then me.

    Like I say not really much to do once your there, but an easy sail to break you in.

    Good luck with whatever you choose.
    Tom, Sundance
    2wheels1keel.com

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Bristol
    Posts
    271

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    I'm only 2 seasons in on having a mobo in the BC... and the doomsayers almost threw me into not bothering.

    But I'm glad we did. This season we did Portishead > Swansea > Tenby and back @ ~300 miles and it was great! If next season goes well, we might be looking at a bigger boat!

    As others have said:

    • Watch the weather (in particular, I don't even bother going out if it's blowing a SW-erly).
    • Be aware of the tidal current. I've heard it can push 15mph in places (deciding not to call Portishead to ask why one of their buoys shot past us at maybe 15mph when we "weren't moving" was a good decision). A personal one too... if going between the Holm's... take care... the water really turned on us between them at one point and still unsure why.
    • Be aware of the tidal height, and how quickly it changes... I've heard horror stories of boats at anchor being dragged under by their own anchor. Possibly urban legend but hey. We use Navionics if anchoring, to determine against the nearest marker how much the water will drop, and then add some leeway.
    • If possible, stay out of the shipping lane. Saw a bunch of lads have engine failure a month back as a monster shipping container was bearing down on them. They weren't responding on radio either, but thankfully got towed out of the way pretty fast by a friendly mobo. If crossing near Bristol area, check for traffic with Bristol VTS.
    • If a bit green... check if there are any events going on before you go out... as packing into a lock when you're out of practice can be worrying.
    • Consider a spare/aux engine. Our main has failed twice, and we were glad of our aux (both times we contacted coastguard to set up 30-min checks as we limped in and they were utterly lovely at offering to tow us, but we managed without).
    • Probably not applicable - but don't depend on anywhere having petrol!
    • Call firing ranges if intending to cross, even if charts say you have right of way and don't need to.
    Last edited by vodzurk; 14-09-18 at 14:09. Reason: formatting
    YouTube: Gorjus Boating
    Boat: Sealine 195

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Bristol
    Posts
    985

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    Quote Originally Posted by vodzurk View Post
    I'm only 2 seasons in on having a mobo in the BC... and the doomsayers almost threw me into not bothering. But I'm glad we did. This season we did Portishead > Swansea > Tenby and back @ ~300 miles and it was great! If next season goes well, we might be looking at a bigger boat! [/LIST]
    Well I'm pleased you stuck to it. Asked lot of advice, honed your skills and got on with it. Didn't get drowned or wrecked once.
    A boat is for going places

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    380

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Manic76 View Post
    Meant to ask, which club is this?
    Cardiff Yacht Club. I forgot to mention that you have to “buy” the pontoon for £2700 I believe but your money is returned in full when you leave. Fore and aft mooring are also available much cheaper.

    Best location being walking distane from the bay leisure area but no electricity on the pontoon and not as busy as Cardiff Bay Yacht Club - the clubhouse only opens restricted hours but showers ect are 24x7 hours. I like it.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    380

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    For piece of mind I would suggest anyone on the BC getting some training. You hear scare stories in the Yacht Club bars or online usually from someone who has just bought a £1000 first boat on eBay or who has not been out of the bay for 10 years but the reality is that it is no different to any tidal waters, just a bit larger in magnitude.

    Sailing in a decent boat in a SW is fine, just not a force 6+ with wind over tide in certain areas.
    Other than the right up to the River Severn tides peak at 3 to 4 knots, usually less. Make sure they are behind you.
    If you anchor make sure that you have enough water underneath at low water and a long enough rode at high water as posted above.

    Pretty much basic seamanship anywhere. There are a number of sail in company groups / events that are a great way to learn for the less experienced.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    380

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Manic76 View Post
    Dutch and Steve, thank you for your comprehensive comments, really appreciated. If I am honest I am split 50/50 on being excited/terrified by the concept of BC sailing.

    If anyone needs crew for a day out of Cardiff we would be very interested in helping out
    I would be happy to take you out for a day if dates match up. PM me if interested.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Shropshire - Sundance, Bristol Channel
    Posts
    1,068

    Default Re: Advice on Bristol Channel boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Dutch01527 View Post
    Sailing in a decent boat in a SW is fine, just not a force 6+ with wind over tide in certain areas.
    The wind does tend to blow out of the West a lot but with the tides just be prepared to have wind over tide either on the trip out or the trip back but a 35ft sailing boat will lap it up, don't worry too much.

    As mentioned, work with the tides West with the ebb, East with the flood, keep off the green stuff till you're confident, that's all you can do apart from enjoy it.
    Tom, Sundance
    2wheels1keel.com

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