Welcome to the Maunie of Ardwall blog

This is the blog of Maunie of Ardwall. After a six-year adventure sailing from Dartmouth to Australia, we are now back in Britain.

Sunday, 23 September 2018

Still sailing - and catching up with sailing mates

We've certainly joined the ranks of the time-poor! Where do the weeks go, exactly? After our extended sailing trip, where time each year seem to last at least eighteen months, we are back into the familiar routine where a year chopped up into working weeks seems to last about six! This working-for-a-living malarkey is all well and good but it does get in the way of the sailing rather.

Still, whilst our sailing is reduced to weekends and the odd extended weekend, it's lovely to be back on the beautiful southwest coast of England. We're also enjoying the Somerset countryside which had turned an unusual shade of parched brown at the end of the amazingly hot and dry summer but is now back to its more common lush green. Our links to the Pacific sailing world remain strong, with regular contact with sailing friends and even a couple of visits.

Firstly we had Ana and Colin (ex Ithaka) who had a family get together in a cottage in Dittisham, a couple of miles up the River Dart from MAunie's mooring, and joined us aboard Maunie with their two grandsons for coffee.

Then Kerry (ex Sel Citron) came to stay and enjoyed a mix of local hikes and some good sailing.

Kerry & Di on Kilve Beach

Low tide geology
 Kerry also did a great sketch of our cottage:

Graham's work has been rather time-consuming for his first few months (warm sunshine = record cider sales!) but our own apple orchard has deliver a pretty good crop this year so we have also been busy harvesting:

Apple pressing, on a rather smaller scale

Very tasty pink juice from the early crop of Discovery apples

Whilst we haven't managed a planned trip across to southern Ireland, we did have an excellent, four-day mini-cruise to Falmouth and back which reminded us just how good the local sailing is around us.

Approaching Start Point

Di enjoying the sail as we beat to windward. 

Approaching Pendennis Castle in Falmouth

The beautiful River Yealm with two smaller Vancouvers on moorings near us

The Yealm visitors' pontoon

A great spinnaker run back to Dartmouth
It definitely feels suddenly quite autumnal, so sailing now involves waterproofs and warm layers which comes as something of a shock after six years of t-shirts and shorts. However Maunie is definitely the right boat for these conditions and the central heating has been tested already!

Finally, we drove down to Southampton on Friday to visit the Boat Show. We were mostly looking for kit suppliers and ideas for the refit that well be doing to the boat over the next year or two but, of course, we had to look at a few other boats just to compare. We genuinely didn't find anything we'd want to swap Maunie for apart, perhaps, for this beautiful wooden 63ft yawl built by Spirit Yachts in Ipswich.

Access to these kinds of boats at the Show is usually reserved for those who have pre-arranged a private viewing (and presumably passed the finance test) but one of the Spirit Yachts team saw us admiring her and invited us aboard.

For those interested this link gives more photos: https://spirityachts.com/spirit-dh63-launch-southampton-boat-show/