I got up at 4:45, had breakfast and prepared Moon River for the voyage back to Shoreham.
Moon River slipped from Bembridge at 06:00, at High Water.
I knew that the tide would initially be against us, and was not due to turn in our favour until 11:20 – another 5 hours – but the wind was due to increase to SW 5 or 6 and the chop would only get worse as the wind increased.
We had cleared the buoyed channel out of the harbour by 6:30. I decided to go through the Looe Channel, rather than the longer route round the Owers. As yet the sea state was only slight.
I raised the mainsail and set a course of 090°.
There was only a slight swell as Moon River crossed from Bembridge towards Selsey Bill.
The adverse tide was beginning to slow by the time Moon River reached Boulder at 08:32.
Moon River passed Streete at 08:33 with a tolerably flat sea and In calm conditions.
Moon River changed course to 075°.
At 09:30, we headed slightly further inshore on a course of 069° towards Shoreham.
The adverse tide slowed, and by 11:30 had turned in our favour and we were making 6 knots and more over the ground
Moon River was passing Worthing at 11:45. The variable wind had now settled into a steady South Westerly.
Ahead I could see the attractively coloured spinnakers of the SYC racing fleet contesting the Summer series race 3.
I passed Major Clanger going well with their spinnaker flying.
Moon River headed further inshore to keep clear of the racing yachts.
Moon River passed the familiar landmark of Lancing College at 12:15.
Further out, Ocean Dream were racing towards the final turning mark, with their spinnaker flying well.
Skitter were also flying their spinnaker nicely up to the finish line.
Moon River reached Shoreham Harbour at 13:00 in time for the 13:30 lock. When the lock gates opened, I saw Crazy H come out.
Moon River went in the lock with some of the racing yachts – Josh, Kingfisher, Italian Job and Maverick.
Moon River was back on her mooring at 14:10.