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The South-West

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Fairwinds Round Ireland - The South-West
Kilmore Quay to Ballycotton

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Dingle - Smerwick
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Thursday 8th July Kilmore Quay , Wexford, Rosslare

Blowing a South-Easterly gale. Jackie and his wife Monica took us into Wexford where we had a wander about the narrow streets, full of real shops rather than chain stores. Had another magnificent full Irish breakfast for E4.99 each in a department store, then wandered along the new and rather splendid quayside looking at the mussel dredgers. Jackie told us that the buoyed channel into Wexford is easy now - though not in strong onshore winds - and it would be worth a visit.

Passing Hook Head

When we met up with Jackie and Monica again they took us down to Rosslare and showed us around, then we went across to Carnsore Point and I saw close up the windmills that had been our aiming point from Tuskar on our way into Kilmore Quay.

When we got back to Kilmore Jackie took us on board Wild Thyme, gave us a present for the boat in the form of a wonderful canvas cockpit pocket in a green to match our boat and also gave me a bottle of Powers Irish Gold whisky he found in a locker. He also took me up to the house for a shower asit was too late to get one at the community centre, then took us both down to the fish co-op he manages and presented us with two beautiful black sole and two splendid monkfish, both of which he prepared for us.

Passing Hook Head

His final gift was twenty litres of diesel. I do not think that I have ever met a more generous, more genuine man he could not have done more for us. (Although he shortly was to do just that, as you will find out if you read on).

Friday 9th July Kilmore Quay - Ballycotton

Slipped Kilmore Quay at 06:00 in company with Jim Hall in Samedi. Jim was determined to make Kinsale before dark (about 85 miles) and Samedi soon motor-sailed away from us while we decided to save the aging Volvo and make do with the wind we had. It was a pleasant morning after the gale of the previous day. However, the wind died away soon after passing Hook Head, with its distinctive black and white hooped light which marks the entrance to Waterford. The photo shows Zaverda, a yacht from Poole, passing us.

Passing Hook Head

Eventually we were forced to motor, but not for long . . . just before ten o'clock the engine overheated and on shutting it down we discovered that two blades had broken off the (newish) impellor. Replaced it with the spare and had the engine on half an hour later, a testament to the calm weather at the time changing the impellor on the MD6A is not an easy job.

Just before midday the wind picked up and we were able to switch the engine off again and sail. However, our pleasure was short-lived - by half past four the wind had backed SW to head us and we had to motorsail into heavy seas with two reefs and most of the genoa rolled away. Eventually, with the wind bang on the nose and now gusting up to 25 knots, we ended up sheeting the genoa amidships in order to make any windward progress at all. The Vega gives a very comfortable ride in a seaway in most conditions, but this was not enjoyable.

At about eight o'clock as we entered Ballycotton Bay the wind finally became NW and gave us a reach. This was the direction the forecast had been promising all day, but people told us that no matter what theforecast it usually blows SW along the coast here. We had an excellent sail for the last few miles, and picked up a visitors' mooring at Ballycotton at quarter past nine. Neither of us could be bothered inflating the dinghy - we had a delicious meal of monkfish fillet in batter with Irish new potatoes and a glass of wine then fell into bed!

Visitors moorings, Ballycotton

From Kilmore Quay Ballycotton Kinsale Glandore Baltimore Schull Crookhaven Lawrence Cove Dingle Smerwick Harbour