Day 2 – Queenborugh to Brightlingsea
Relatively early in the morning most of us were up and making tea, having breakfasts and getting ready for the next passage. This time across the estuary to Brightlingsea.
The weather improved with light wind and lots of sun all day long, so good sailing through estuary shallows. One of the challenges of the day was crossing the Wallet Spitway and than entering Brightlingsea marina. It was very little water when we arrived and while waiting for the berth we were swept a bit by the tide and touched the ground, just few meters from the pontoon. Nothing serious but it showed how narrow and shallow the channel is there.
Few minutes later we were moored or rather rafted to another boat. Time for dinner.
To get a shore we could use our tender but looking at the speed of the tide we took a water taxi. It is £1 per few meters ride, well few boat’s lengths and its really close but very convenient.
We went to an Indian Restaurant and had a good curry with couple of beers. On the way back, quick shower in the Yacht Club, than taxi to the pontoon.
It was fairly early yet, so I had nice conversation with other members of our group before heading to our Galion.
Tomorrow our destination is Woolverstone Marina.
Day 3 – Brightlingsea to Woolverstone
After lovely breakfast and coffee made on board it was time to go but … in the entrance to the marina there were plenty of small dinghies whizzing in all directions practically blocking passage through the narrow channel. Nice view though, seeing so many youngsters sailing. Slowly, we passed between them, get on the river and set our sails. Than I noticed that in front of us there was a race! Small catamarans going around the cans on the triangle course. Too big to go around as it was stretching far beyond the channel buoys and it could be to shallow. So, having not much of a choice we crossed their path twice, of course making sure not to interfere.
While we were getting deeper into the Estuary an amazing view appear to our starboard, hundreds of sailing boats in a distant, covering the whole horizon. I have no idea what sort of event it was but it was good to be one of those on the sailing boat.
Our destination was Woolverstone, so we turned to port and towards the Harwich.
There was beautiful weather with fair North-Easterly wind which at some point gusted 20-21 knots. This let us sail on one tack almost to the Harwich Harbour. With few tacks we entered the River Orwell but from there we had to start an engine and motor up the river to Reach the Woolverstone marina before the tide change.
Some time later we were safely moored and went for a dinner to the Royal Harwich Yacht Club. Their clubhouse was recently rebuild to a modern, spacious and allowing lots of natural light building. By the name and its appearance it seemed to be quite expensive to have a dinner there but nothing more misleading. Very reasonably priced of good size and delicious meals you can have there. Plus nice views, quiet and fresh air made a great day.
On the marina side it was also good experience. If you will be looking for an enjoyable weekend or so, the Woolverstone is a place to stop-by on your sailing route.