Entry One

Today we arrived at about one o’clock, we had a boat brief, got allocated births and unpacked our stuff into our boxes. We motored to Cowes on the Isle of Wight, and were given our waterproofs. The weather was quite windy and it was getting late, so we started to make our fajitas at sea. After dinner we cleared everything away and then had free time ashore, followed by showers. Before bedtime, we played cards and chatted. We were all very tired from our long journeys, ranging from Lands’ End, to near Chester. There is a range of strange personalities beginning to appear, from James and his strange pronunciations to some wild welsh accents. We are all looking forward to our first full day at sea tomorrow, when we are off to Poole. 

By Jenny & Dara

Entry Two

Today we set off from the port in the Isle of Wight at 10:30 after preparing the boat for the day. We spent around 6 hours sailing, whereby we finished in Poole. The crew completed the day with relative ease, despite having to tack multiple times throughout the day due to a South West blowing wind; this resulted in having to sail into the wind. The conditions were particularly moist, due to the three meter swell, meaning that at times the gunnels were submerged. It was sick. Lunch was a delightful steak slice accompanied with beans. Much of the crew had never met a Welsh man before and thus took much entertainment from hearing the pronunciation of many words; in particular the Welsh translation of Jellyfish: ‘Psygod wibli-wobli’.

By Kyra, Jac and Rowan

Entry Three 

Today we left Poole Harbour. We managed to hoist all three sails. Unfortunately, two of these sails (Yankee and staysail) decided that they did not wish to remain attached to their sheets, thus sacrificing themselves to the English Channel. Bowline tying lessons then ensued. Originally, the plan was to land in Lymington, however parking spots for 72ft yachts are hard to come by. With plans changing, we headed for the Olympic port of Weymouth. After seven hours of intense winching, hauling and pasta eating, we finally arrived. Despite all the Pan-Pans and Maydays heard over the radio, we remained relatively unharmed. However, no tears were shed until the chopping of onions for the curry dinner. Jenny took on role of ship mother after Rollo and James threw chicken at her. After a few angry words, everything was forgiven over Sicilian ice cream. We’re soooo looking forward to an early start in the morning at 6am. Wish us luck!

By Polly, Rollo and James Weir

Entry Four 

An early arousal to day 4 kicked off a long day of hard work and heavy rain. Having been banished from breakfast till the boat was underway, presented the milky challenge of eating cereal at 20 degrees heel to port. With only a couple of cows worth of milk being over the table, we managed not to drown and succeeded to head up on to the deck in the glorious Weymouth weather. The 2/3 meter swell and light mizzel made for ideal sunbathing conditions, in Spain, however as the sea built and the natural tap increased its discharge to an inhumanly rate it was decided that the cockpit was the place to be. However the bumpy conditions still weren’t enough to keep some of the crew from falling asleep on deck, who were finally woken by passing over the St. Albans race, an especially rough place. The speed record for the week was smashed as the speed record for the day hitting 13.3knots, basically hitting the sound barrier, this was however cut short by the Cowes-Torquay powerboat racers who came past us, leaving us standing. Passing into the Solent lead to flatter seas and heavier rain, making some miserable faces look like they had lost a tenner and found a fiver. If that doesn’t sum up sadness I don’t know what does. This didn’t however kill all joys as Conor decided waterproofs were unnecessary and took to the board shorts and not a lot else, successfully avoided hypothermia, just. A delayed lunch of tomato and vegetable soup cheered a few faces, just before we reached Cowes. Dropping the fore-sails followed by dropping the main meant we were almost ready to berth. Sliding alongside and making a beeline for the warm showers was the priority for most of the crew, yet the skipper likes a tease and decided to hit up a U-turn and head back out the channel for one last salty surprise. Finally alongside and showered, a game of alternative cards took place, while Dara cooked up meaty one. To finish what has been an intense heavily moist day, a cream pie was on the cards.

Hope you enjoyed.

Conor, Jac, Kyra

Entry Five 

Today we met at the train station, before travelling to Portsmouth. Our group then got onto Challenger 3 and met the nice staff. They spoke to us about the rules and safety precautions. After that we set off to Cowes. The sails were not put up today, but we plan to do that tomorrow. For dinner we had wraps.  After washing up is complete we will go to the showers and shop. Today was very pleasant and enjoyable. We hope for good weather in the coming days.

By Mary, Keely, Kaylee, Kian and Ketra