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Rade d’Agay

May 10, 2011

Tuesday 10th May

We did it – we finally did it! We’ve left Sainte Maxime. It was a beautiful place, it has served us well, looked after us and provided us with many new friends. Last night just as we were preparing tea another English registered yacht appeared, looking rather huge and splendid, the hull something of a cross between a Halberg-Rassey and a galleon! The topsides just huge!

Cabin ready for guests

They tied up on the fuel berth and went looking for the Capitain, who had gone home for his tea as it was after 6pm, so eventually decided to come alongside us. We got chatting and of course that led to a beer and a look around each others’ boats…

The ‘ship’ was built as a one-off in a ship yard in Italy by men used to building ships. She has 4inch thick wooden hull, and a mahousive Caterpillar engine, an inverter that can power the National Grid, and beautifully inlaid compass roses in the tables, the nav desk, anywhere you can fit one. She’s about 20 years old and needs some tidying as she’s been sitting for a while in Spain. Vaughan and his son Shaun were taking her back to Italy, where they live, and will be doing a lot of the scrubbing and hard work themselves.

So this morning we woke at 7.30 to them leaving, the other two boats already having gone! On our side deck was a bottle of Rioja and a note duck-taped to it. What a pleasure it was to have met two such lovely gentlemen.

Italy certainly sounds like a good place to visit. There are, apparently plenty of berths available as the train line is being moved further back from the coast with the excess rock being thrown into the sea and new marinas made on top of the excess rock! Maybe we will have to investigate in the not-to-distant future…

So, we left reasonably early, I think about 0830, with the plan of going for a sail around the Golfe de Frejus and ending up at the Rade d’Agay for the night. The wind slowly filled in and we had a lovely sail at about 4 – 5 knots, increasing to 8 knots for a time. The switch was then flicked, wind stopped, 30minutes later, wind back on but from the opposite direction! Got nice and close to Frejus and Saint Raphael, saw the marina entrances and kept sailing.

The First Swim!

Eventually the new wind died down and we were getting pretty close to lunchtime so we motored about half a mile and anchored by the Ile d’Or, a beautiful tiny island with a big tower on it, surrounded by deep water; we nearly had to use the anchor as a grappling hook on the beach! We had lunch and saw a lot of fish – couldn’t catch one – and as it was so hot, we decided to take a quick dip in the Med! I donned Phil’s wetsuit, a snorkel and mask and did one lap of the boat, taking in the rudder, the keel and the anchor chain!

Having dried off, we motored leisurely round the headland to our chosen destination for the night, the Rade d’Agay. The pilot guide says the moorings are suitable for yachts up to 16m, however the Capitain came whizzing out in his RIB and quickly decided we were the right length but on the question ‘how heavy’ and the reply ‘27 tonnes’ he very quickly said no we were too heavy, the moorings are only for 12 tonnes! But he did say we could anchor where we were, so that’s what we have done! ‘Rock Steady’ is down in the weed and mud, hopefully holding us fast in 10 metres of water, there’s a gentle rock from the Southerly swell, a very gentle breeze and a beautiful sunset on the red rocks on it’s way.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Shawn permalink
    May 10, 2011 8:04 pm

    Looking great!

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