We just got back from a week on the Solent. We had big plans for an overnight sail to the West Country, but after a few nights out we decided that it was just too cold to do a long passage. It was at or below freezing most nights, getting down to 25 degrees F one night in Lymington and covering the boat in frost.
We were lucky to have along a butane-powered Bright-Spark indoor heater to take the edge off the evenings and mornings (http://brightspark.info/products/domiglow-indoor-heater): We used four or five of the butane “batteries” during this week, which cost about £10 for a pack of four. We were very careful to make sure it ventilated correctly, and was nowhere near anything flammable on board.
Still, most days had sun, even if they were cold when the clouds showed up. We sailed from Gosport to the Newtown River for two nights, and then to Lymington for three nights, and finally one more night in the Newtown before our best sail of the trip back to Gosport yesterday. Best day trip was a bike rental in the New Forest, which the kids really enjoyed.
We also hiked from the Newtown River to Yarmouth for a day trip, hiked the Coastal Path in Lymington, and did fossil hunting along the shores of the Solent. Now that we sail with two teenagers, things are changing a bit. Doug can helm quite well, and Eve is taking on increasingly important jobs (like helping to land on docks). If you look back through our photo albums, it seems like only yesterday they were five and seven years old.
We have a full photo album of the trip here:
As a reward for enduring the cold nights and days all week on the boat, we set up a four night rental of a fisherman’s cottage in the old town of St. Ives in Cornwall. We’re at home now resting up, but early tomorrow morning we catch a train to St Ives for the rental. The thing that sold me on the cottage was the location and the wood burning stove. I’ll post pictures of this trip later.