This event was planned over a falling tide so the group had a few hours to fill on this cruise in company, the 4th in the series.
Members and guests gathered at the club at 11am to discuss and agree the destination for the day. The forecast was for south westerly winds, force 3 or 4, with occasional showers. None of us were convinced however and as events unfolded during the day it was just another example of how the forecasters should perhaps be looking for another vocation.
A good turnout of skippers were in attendance and the 7 boats which ultimately attended the cruise were (in alphabetical order): Aziana, Idothea, Gonzo, Orithia, Sorley, Stargazer and Varrich.
The destination was chosen as Inchcolm (north side) but as we had time to spare we decided on a leisurely beat upstream, to around Hound Point. From there we would make our way round to the far side of Inchcolm to drop anchor and have lunch. The weather up to this point had been reasonable with the odd spot of rain but, in the main, a bright and promising day.
There were already one or two boats in the bay when the fleet arrived at around 2pm but there was sufficient room for us all and we all enjoyed some relaxation in the peace and calm of Inchcolm Bay. The highlight of the day however was when Peter Hall (Varrich) produced his bagpipes and treated all within earshot to a medley of wonderful piping tunes, all of which was enthusiastically acknowledged by all around.
With the breeze having apparently diminished during the afternoon the fleet set sail for home mostly under full sail only to be struck by gale force south westerly winds (which came out of nowhere) when we ventured out round the east side of Inchcolm. Chaos ensued as crews hurriedly reduced sail to regain some form of control. With disaster averted we ‘reached’ back to port at a cracking pace.
All in all, another good day but with more lessons learned. These being always prepare for the unexpected and never trust a weather forecaster.