Back to the Isle of Man

We’re back in the Isle of Man!

Having arrived back in Bangor from my 2 hectic weeks in India, the itch took hold and we both decided that we needed to go sailing before calling a halt to the season. So, with plans to overwinter in Whitehaven, we decided to have another attempt at the Isle of Man – so left on Tuesday morning bright and early…

Bangor turned out to be an excellent stopping point – providing all the essential requirements – laundry facilities, good internet, clean bathrooms and access via rail to the major cities. Laurie and Sandra apparently had a fun week together – venturing as far as Dublin (for the Guinness Factory) I think – and going into Belfast a couple of times – including a tour of City Hall – with it’s magnificent furnishings…

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So… Tuesday morning we’re up at 6:00 – but it’s dark! Still, preparations are made and by 7:00 it’s light enough, so I warm up the engine and make final preparations… We untie docklines and the very light air means we have a very easy getaway – except… the engine won’t rev. Not at all. I have virtually no power and when I push the throttle forward more, the thing quits. I get it started again, and have Laurie change our diesel tanks over. No better. Nothing for it, we have to dive into a slip and sort this out. Good job we’re not too quick to pull in fenders and lines! Fortunately there’s a slip open and we ghost into it. The culprit turns out to be my tool bag – stored right next to the dual fuel filters – the selection lever was moved to be between the two filters – getting fuel from nowhere! Quick fix – we’re off by 7:30…

We had winds behind us most of the way and quite light – but managed to sail the bulk of the way to Peel Harbor – with a nice current behind us nearly all the way! We were forced to watch the clock closely since Peel’s entrance has a ‘Flapgate’ which is only open at high water +/- 2 hours – so 4pm was the deadline! Failing this we’d have to take a mooring on the outside, but with 30kt northerly winds forecast the following morning, this was not something we were looking forward to! Fortunately, we arrived in very good time and took the 2:30 bridge opening time to enter the harbor and secure on B dock. Peel is a tight little harbor, and having secured, we decided we ought to face the opposite direction in order to face the expected wind. Turning around was quite interesting – but we managed – with Laurie fishing a poorly thrown dockline out of the drink and steering us backward into the slip. All good. Gin and Tonic’s well deserved!

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