‘Tannhauser’ is declared ready for her first trip out of the Marina. Ben and Steve decide to go out together when PJ arrives on Friday, 17 June.
With her decks, cockpit and cabin cleared of all the accumulated gear not necessary for a passage it looks like we can set out over the sill at 1430 for a motor down to Ramsholt. We have great fun in the calm, sunny weather but the current is always strong and we set up a fender on a long line astern of ‘Cachalot’. Ben also sends a line across between the boats. He’s keen to test how watertight his clinker dinghy is, and rows across to ‘Cachalot’. Verdict: it’s very leaky! Steve goes for a swim and this confirms the urgent necessity for some sort of ladder as climbing back on board seems more difficult every year. PJ offers to cook supper and Steve puts the outboard onto the dinghy and we motor across to spend an excellent evening on board ‘Tannhauser’, returning to ‘Cachalot’ in the gloaming.
Up for breakfast at 0730 and we’re hailed by PJ, ‘do you want some bacon?’ They send it across on the tidal current, wrapped with an egg box for buoyancy but Bev fails to capture it with the boathook so Steve quickly launches the dinghy and motors downstream to capture it! Our planned departure from the buoys at 1100 was delayed as Ben and PJ took over an hour to recover the half-sunk dinghy and stow her under the boom. We hail as James sails by in ‘Kestrel’ and finally set off downriver to test the sails and rigging on ‘Tannhauser’. The sails go up well, and she’s looking pretty good as we turn at 1400 before reaching Felixstowe Ferry, for our return to the Tidemill with the tide. We slip back into the Marina at 1630.