[ article ]
of the Corryvreckan:
Redbay – Cowes - Redbay
By: Steven Ferres
of Redbay's Powerboating School and
Steven Ferres brought one of Redbay's latest
RIBs all the way by sea to RIBEX 2010. The
furthest sea passage undertaken by any of
at the latest RIB Show on the Isle of
Wight. This is their log of the voyage across
the Irish Sea and along the English Channel.
On Tuesday morning Charles Stewart, RYA instructor with Redbay Powerboating, and myself met in Redbay anxious to get going since we wanted to get to Milford Haven before night fell. Everything ran smoothly getting the boat launched and the two of us were underway at 0920. The sea was calm with a gentle northerly breeze aiding us. Since Corryvreckan was literally brand new and only had 6 hours on the clocks, we ran her fairly gently at about 2900rpm. Even at this rate we were managing an impressive 26/27 knots and were looking good to be tied up in Milford Haven at a sensible time.
Since the sea was calm we decided there was no need to follow either the Irish or Welsh coasts, so we plotted a course down the middle of the Irish Sea. Visibility was only average, so we couldn’t see either shore which meant for a dull trip with nothing to look at, we barely even saw another boat or ship. But our progress was great and we arrived in the tidal lock gate at Milford Haven marina at 1850. Total mileage for this leg of the trip was 230 miles.
After waiting for about half an hour in the lock gate with six or seven other yachts we finally got in and went straight to the fuel berth to get refuelled so we could get away as early as possible the next morning. With the boat now full to the neck with diesel, Charles and I tied her up in the marina and contacted the harbour master enquiring what the earliest time the lock gate would open at the following morning so we could make an early start. The answer was 0815 and that we would be contacted on the radio just before 0800 so we could confirm that we still wanted out of the marina.
As promised the evening before, the gates
opened at 0815 allowing us to get underway
and set our course for Lands End with the
intention of refuelling and spending the
night in Torquay, somewhere neither of us
had been before. The weather was much the
same as the previous day, overcast with a
gentle following breeze. Since the engines
now had a few more hours on them and had
loosened up slightly, we decided to run them
a little bit harder. We set them at 3000rpm
and we were averaging 28/29 knots which felt
effortless. The distance from Milford Haven
to Torquay was 212 miles.
Happy now that the boat was topped up with
fuel and that we would be able to make an
early start in the morning, we tied the boat
up on our allocated berth in the marina and
walked into the town to get something to
eat. We planned to leave at 0830 the next
morning hoping to get to Cowes before lunch
so that we could get the boat washed and
cleaned, and get checked into the hotel,
in good time.
We arrived in the yacht haven in Cowes at 1215 having carried the tide with us as we entered the Solent, this tide added an extra three knots to our speed for the final hour of our journey. The distance from Brixham to Cowes was 90 miles. The boat was now safely tied up in Cowes with the first half of our trip completed, a total of 532 miles and 23 hours travelling time.
Corryvreckan proved a popular attraction
at the show with her bright orange gelcoat
standing out over all the other RIBs at the
show. The show was to finish on Sunday afternoon
and Charles and I were keen to get away as
soon as possible with the intension of getting
to Falmouth on Sunday night. We refuelled
the boat on Sunday morning and bought a few
supplies for the trip. We
managed to get away at 1525, all being well
we would make Falmouth just after night fall.
The total distance travelled was 1053 miles in 44 hours and the total fuel used was approximately 2400 litres. This gives a fuel economy of approximately 1.1 litre per mile per engine or 6 gallons per hour per engine.