The herring gulls were back this morning, fighting for our rib perch. I enjoyed watching them in the early morning while having my very necessary morning cup of coffee. Studland Bay was a different place. Yes, there were a few people on the beach, and a few boats hanging around but so much quieter than yesterday. Hard to believe the difference in only 12 hours.
Dominic spent the morning talking to Inspiration Marine. Phil is now on the case, and we decided together that we should head back to Hamble.
We set off from Studland Bay after lunch heading for Hamble via The Needles. We knew it wasn’t the perfect time for this sail as we would have the tides against us, but we wanted to get there as soon as possible. For the first hour we made 5-6 knots, after an hour we changed course to go through the north channel into the Solent. Force 4 wind, with 1m waves. After Hurst Castle we punched a vicious spring tide up the Solent. (Those words come from Dominic!) The wind was from behind and we jibed our way up. We thought we could anchor in the Beaulieu River, but by the time we got there the tide was too low for us to enter. We took the jib in and motor sailed across Southampton Water. We expertly avoided a tanker coming in and then met the most massive container ship coming out from Southampton. Our second choice of anchoring spot would have been just by the Hamble approach, but it was so windy that we decided to take the easy way out and rang Port Hamble for a berth. It was difficult to get on to the pontoon as the wind blew us off, but with the help of a lady from the marina office we got there, and by 9pm we had moored up, and by 10pm we were ready to have our well-deserved supper. Shattering day!