Overcast, but with some sunny spells, showers nearby and variable winds
Wednesday 12th June 2019 – Initiative Day (with dolphins and life-changing experiences thrown in)
Today, we got ourselves up at 7.15 to prepare a breakfast of bacon baguettes. Challenger 3 was 3rd out of Weymouth but the first to have all their sails up and ended up leading the fleet along the coast yet again. We left Weymouth at 10.00 as we had to catch the tide through the needle channel later that day.
When we had left Weymouth, we started to do some tacking to hone our skills even more. After this we caught sight of some Dolphins! We then went over to them and they played around the bow of our boat.
When the dolphins got tired and left us we set up the spinnaker pole for us to climb. We had to climb hand over hand off the yacht and over the slightly blue but mostly brown water out 20 yards over the tsunami like waves. It was filled with excitement, shivers and needed lots of bravery.
Today we ate tomato pasta for lunch, it was yummy, and we ate sausages and mash with a touch of gravy and vegetables for supper. We arrived in Lymington in late afternoon having had a very full, and very exciting day’s boating.
Sunny, light winds, rain in the afternoon
Tuesday 11th June 2019
We were woken up early at 7(-ish) and quickly got the boat ready to sail. Challenger 3 was the first tall ship out of Yarmouth marina, while some of the other Challengers weren’t even awake. Steve’s watch got breakfast ready. We then worked together to get the main sail up which was very heavy and difficult to get up. Before lunch, Mike’s watch did a bit of VHF radioing to the NCI (National Coastwatch Institution) asking for a weather forecast, local hazards and doing radio checks. We also learnt about the need to say over or out having finished speaking.
Then we did a bit of steering and had lunch up on the deck because the sun was shining. Mike’s watch made lunch which was Cornish pasties and baked beans. Next Steve’s watch cleaned up and Mike’s watch put up the Yankee and staysail. After that we practised tying knots, learning the reef knot, bowline, sheet bend, clove hitch and round turn and two half hitches. We then learned how to Gybe. Then we relaxed on the deck while doing some steering.
Finally we spotted Weymouth on the horizon. But, before we put the sails away we learned about flares and what different ones were used for. Then we pulled into the harbour and berthed. There were no other Challengers in sight. So we tidied the deck up and then went into Weymouth to buy our souvenir for the tackiest souvenir competition and to look around the town. We came back to our boat and went and had showers before eating delicious fish ‘n’ chips. We spent the evening planning and preparing our route for the next day.
showers, light winds
Monday 10th June 2019
We arrived at Portsmouth harbour at 09:45 and split into groups. Those of us on Challenger 3 met our: Skipper – Terry, Mate – Amy and watch leaders – Steve and Mike. After dumping our bags and having a quick tour around the boat we are going to be on for the next 4 days, we had lunch and we were then second to move out of the harbour. Although this is due to our quick working and teamwork, meaning that we were the only group to eat lunch in the harbour – this is why we weren’t the first out.
After getting out into the Solent, we put up the Yankee sail and then the staysail – having a go at sweating and going in the snake-pit. Then we learned how to tack. We were first in to Yarmouth marina having overtaken Challenger 2. We showered and ate spaghetti bolognese cooked by Mike’s watch.