This year, our May Day cruise had two options tidally and the decision was taken to explore the upper reaches of the Yare, namely Thorpe St. Andrew.
Friday afternoon saw the first contingent of the YSC fleet arrive at Loddon, led by Egret, with Marigold hot on her heels. Marigold reported being delayed by a strange eddy halfway along Reedham Street, which moored them firmly to the quay outside the Nelson P.H….
That evening, an excellent meal was enjoyed in the Chedgrave White Horse, with Jo & Henry Fillery joining us. The table was booked for seven adults and two well behaved dogs!!
The forecast for Saturday was a mixed bag, with the second contingent of the YSC fleet joining us at Chet Mouth. Overall, a light South Easterly was favourable for our destination, although it was very, very light. Flight was first to leave the basin, despite having spent some time rigging her topsail in anticipation for a slow sail.
At Chet Mouth, Hiawatha had taken the ebb downriver to meet us and, having deposited crew with Flight, both vessels then began a reach upriver against the last of the ebb. We greeted both Honey and Stella Genesta, who were working downriver to Reedham to join the Wyvern cruise on the Waveney. At this time, the flood should have been with us: hey ho.
Egret passed the fleet in the vicinity of Hardley Mill, heading upriver to Surlingham Ferry, making much better progress than us yachts!
Strangely, we found another eddy at Cantley, with all three yachts failing to get past without a brief pause… Much later, both Morning Calm and Anna were spotted on the CHSC cruiser race, passing Flight and Hiawatha in the vicinity of Rockland Fleet Dyke.
At Surlingham, a convivial evening was enjoyed by all members present, with Sonia’s usual hospitality to the fore. Sunday morning started early for some, with Egret making plans to head downriver. Hiawatha also slipped away, leaving Flight for the trip into Thorpe St Andrew.
A bumper crew was assembled, with guests Denis and Margaret Kilner joining us. A sedate motor upriver was livened up by the uncertainty of whether Flight would fit under the Postwick viaduct with the mast up, or if she’d have to dip. This exercise proved good practice for the lower of the two railway bridges at Thorpe.
An excellent lunchtime stop was had at the Rivergarden PH - highly recommended. To complete the navigation, we slipped up around via the upstream exit onto the cut. En-route we passed the site of Jenner’s boatyard, where Flight had been in hire, pre WW2.
At Surlingham, we re-united Marigold with her owners, said farewell to the Kilners and headed downriver on the last of the ebb to Rockland St. Mary.
Sadly the weather turned toward the typical bank holiday fare at this point, so a quiet evening was had before dispersal to moorings on Monday.
An excellent introduction to the 2023 season, thanks everyone.