“Five Go Sailing” – Day Five

By PowerSail contributor, Stephen West.

The final day and time to take it a little easier on our way back to Ocean Village. By now the crew were well versed in preparations for leaving the marina, ready and at stations long before a single word from the skipper! Slack water made it an easy depart through the busy small boat channel out of Portsmouth Harbour. With the motor on until we cleared Spitbank Fort and then, in a steady Force 4 south-easterly wind, it was time for the sails to go up and the glorious silence of motor-free movement.

With every point of sail used we made our way up to a last-day lazy lunch at anchor in Osborne Bay, with Osborne House a backdrop in the afternoon sunshine. Kingfisher’s self-tacking jib takes much of the strain out of sailing – perhaps the purists think it makes it lazy sailing – but for our novice crew it allowed them time to watch and understand the relationship between the wind, the tide and the boat without the distraction of winches and sheets. That can come later on as they go off and book Competent Crew courses with an RYA school – as each one of them has caught the bug!!

Of course, anchoring was also a new experience for our crew – with all of the considerations of chain length deployed, approach and lying, and of course, transit checking for anchor drag. Soon everyone settled, with one on a relaxed watch for any incidents, and the joy of bobbing at anchor enjoyed by all.

Osborne Bay

All too soon it was time to take in the ‘at anchor’ ball and bring the anchor back up. The wind had eased by now, but still enough for a very gentle sail back up Southampton Water until it was ‘engine on’ for the last time this trip at the mouth of the Itchen River, and back to our berth in Ocean Village.

Stephen West and his crew aboard Kingfisher

A wash-down and post-voyage tidy, a debrief over a well-earned ice cream and it was time to say ‘goodbye’ …until the next time, of course!

Find out more about sailing on Kingfisher with Kingfisher Yachting HERE

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