To give the engine a rest, consider fitting solar panels or a wind generator. We plug on, by now at displacement speed, beyond the famous North Foreland Lighthouse, but it’s obvious that we are not up for spending seven hours battling this sort of sea state. Our strategy for circumnavigating Britain was arrived at over numerous conversations before embarking. Having thanked the moorings officer, Ian Tolchard, for donating our berthing fee to the two charities we are supporting, we slip our buoy and make our way out of the Helford River to the Black Rock and its cardinal buoy, which stands guard at the entrance to the magnificent Fal estuary. He’s in his car en route to Stirling. Most of the present harbours were originally constructed for vessels that relied upon sail power, and visiting them on a sailing boat is like travelling by time machine. © 2020 Guardian News & Media Limited or its affiliated companies. That means all electrical items being run or charged from the ship’s 12 or 24 volts – including equipment like shavers, camera batteries, phones and computers. The voyage was raising money for lifeboat charity the RNLI and the Pappa Fund, which supports health and education projects in India. Each could serve as a temporary base for part or all of a season, with ample opportunities for local sailing or holiday excursions to adjoining areas. It is also a good place to pause and plan our passage through Kyle Rhea, a spectacularly picturesque but tricky ‘S’ bend a few miles long and only half-a-mile wide with fast tides running through it. For coastal cruising in out-of-the way places, London Apprentice carries solar panels and a dinghy on davits. 2009-08-28T00:57:04+01:00 Would we return? It’s one thing to read about terrifying seas off Portland Bill or in the Pentland Firth, but going there and executing a successful passage around the hazards can do wonders for self-belief. But most of the time, for hour upon hour in rain and shine, both men worked to negotiate the rocky headlands, the swirling tides and the subtle sandbanks of the British coast. The enthralling marine museum at Harolds Wick and the spectacular Hermaness Nature Reserve should not be missed. The Western Isles have most of their settlements on the Atlantic flank, where the soil is better for farming and the tradition of crofting managed to survive the land clearances which depopulated parts of the inner islands and mainland. This may sound wimp-like but it is good for morale and also for safety, because cold, stressed people are more likely to make mistakes. Just the two of us Continue reading → August 8, 2015 August 21, 2015. All I have to do is turn around and go back to Ramsgate – easy enough to say but not to execute. This is the fourth and final significant left turn in our journey, and the final leg. Entering a small harbour, such as Portreath, Cornwall, will not be easy in onshore winds or swell.