Sunny September at Calshot



A small group of Seavets met up at a gloriously sunny Calshot this week, I arrived on Tuesday morning to find Keith and Mary Williams had camped there from the day before, we were soon joined by Simon Barker then Andy and Linda Lacy, followed by Maurice and Barbara Humberstone. The wind was blowing in a nice direction for the lagoon, so we quickly rigged up and spent the day blasting around in the bay, we were also joined in the afternoon by local man Owen Dimond. Simon was enjoying himself so much that he ignored warnings to land before the tide fell too much and treated us to some mudlark entertainment, the black mud on his legs made his shorty wetsuit appear full length.

It was a lovely evening so Andy and Linda hosted a BBQ and we were joined by Paul and Jean Fetes plus Steve Shipp who were staying in the main campsite, it was like old times with 11 of us gathered to enjoy reminiscences of past trips, while watching the sun set over the fast-disappearing power station.

We had planned to do the Lepe and Ashlett cruise on Wed, and were joined by day sailors Owen, John Ellis, Dave Gilchrist and Dave Rabetts, the forecast had been for a steady 12 mph SE wind, however in reality the local weather station was showing 17 to 21 kts, with the Solent looking quite lumpy, so a group decision was made to abort the Lepe trip and just go to Ashlett for lunch leaving at 12.45, when the wind was due to moderate to 10/15 kts. Most of us launched at 11.00 and enjoyed some good blasting in the lagoon for the rest of the morning.

Andy, Simon, John, Maurice, Owen the two Dave's and myself set off for Ashlett with a following 15 kt wind, and enjoyed some broad reaching on quite lumpy water down to the entrance of Ashlett Creek, here the water was calm with the shelter of trees from the wind. On landing we realised Owen had gone missing, Dave G rapidly volunteered to go back in search for him, in the meantime some phone calls were made to Linda back at base, and we discovered Owen had safely returned there having sustained minor injuries while catapulting off his board, we did try to alert Dave to this, but he couldn't hear the call whilst sailing.

The remaining 6 of us had our normal fish & chip lunch sitting in warm sunshine outside The Jolly Sailor, and after lunch had a lovely sail back to Calshot, beating on the rail into a steady 12kt wind. On arriving back and checking Owen and Dave were Ok the wind picked up again, and most of us headed back out for an hour or so of blasting to round off the day nicely.

It was a shame we didn't make Lepe but we probably covered more distance sailing in safer water anyway, and everyone apart from Owen seemed to enjoy the day. In the evening Simon and I checked out the Velodrome at the centre, and decided the steepness of the banking was not for us so joined Andy for a bottle of wine instead. Thursday dawned wet and misty and with no water or wind in sight we all packed up and headed for home.

No group photos this time as everyone was too busy sailing, but have attached images of our campsite by the water's edge, also the Velodrome inside the hangar.

Richard

10 September 2021

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