Clyde Cruising Club Centennial Cruise 2010

     Home     2010 main page      Sailing home page  

The Clyde Cruising Club organised their Centennial Cruise this year, so we decided to join it.

About 170 other yachts did also, including a dozen or so Americans, and two other Canadian boats.

One, Christina Grant was an amateur built wooden beauty from Halifax.  The owner/ builder is now project manager for a major rebuild of the Bluenose.  It is good to know that this expensive project will be run by someone who knows what he is doing technically as well as being an experienced project manager.

The other Canadian was also wooden, a beautiful racer called Starfire, built in England over 50 years ago.  Since her racing days were over, she has sailed many miles, including cruising Patagonia.

(Double click to see full size, then use the back button on your browser to return here)

We started in Ardfern, where most of 170 or so boats met, with a barbecue/party/dance, which was lots of fun.

Denis and Pam Moonan from Maine joined us at Ardfern, and the first thing they noticed when boarding was that they knew some Americans on the boat the we were rafted up with (by chance).

Not surprisingly, the marina was overcrowded, but it was well organised, so the complexities just added to the party atmosphere.
The first day of the cruise was a race to Tobermory, with 4 serious racing classes and a cruising/racing class which we joined.  The first 25 miles was in a strong wind.
The other boats started from 5 to 30 minutes ahead of us, since we misunderstood the starting instructions. We were pleased to count 43 boats behind us at the half way point.
After that the wind dripped to a whisper, so the race became a drifting match, with many boats being unable to finish before the 7 PM cut-off.
We came in third, so were very pleased.
After Tobermory, we all sailed over to Loch Drumbuie to try to form the largest Sunflower (circular raft of boats) ever. 
The shot from our masthead shows about 20% of the circle. 

There is a good video on youtube made by one of the sailors.

There were 184 boats in the circle, which failed to beat Club's (and I think world) record of 191 set in 2000.

There was a lot of partying, but nobody managed to walk all round the circle, even by refusing drinks en route.
The next organised event was in the Outer Hebridies, at Vatersay and people sailed there by various routes. 

We anchored a couple of days at Coll, and biked around the almost deserted roads.

We also spent a day hiking around Mingulay, which has been uninhabited since about 1900, although some very tough farmers had lived there for centuries.

En route we met Golden Eye, one of the US participants, sailing well
At Vatersay there was a beach barbecue, and various other festivities.

The population of the island of Vatersay is only about a hundred, but they have a local band (the Vatersay Boys) made up of a two accordionists, a drummer and a bagpiper. They have made several CD's and put on a great show that overfilled the local pub when we were there.
Five boats took the chance to sail out to St Kilda, which is a rather remote group of islands out in the Atlantic.  It is notoriously hard to get to under sail, and lacks a bad weather anchorage.

This shot over our stern when leaving gives some clue of the weather.

Our other pictures are on the St Kilda page.

We had a fast ride back to Loch Spelve on the Isle of Mull, where we had a great mussel supper with about 100 other boats in the cruise, but took no photographs.
  After the end of the two week cruise, we headed around the South and West coasts of Mull, still with Denis and Pam on board.
        Home     2010 main page      Sailing home page