Au­to­matic an­chor­ing

Yachting Monthly - - YACHT CHARTER - By Les Wil­lis

I was the new owner of a bil­ge­keeled Westerly Kon­sort and was look­ing for­ward to be­ing able to take the ground for the first time with­out the sup­port of a har­bour wall. I had en­joyed an overnight pas­sage from Swansea to the Isles of Scilly in com­pany with three other yachts. The two fin-keeled boats went to St Mary's and the other twin-keeler and I sailed to New Grimsby Sound, ar­riv­ing in the late af­ter­noon af­ter a long overnight pas­sage.

We found the an­chor­age. I in­tended to move later to take the ground in Green Bay, so only laid enough schain for the then fall­ing tide. The other skip­per called with an in­vi­ta­tion to din­ner. I even­tu­ally re­turned on board and went be­low for a short rest be­fore mov­ing on the next ris­ing tide to Green Bay. The din­ner and 24-hour pas­sage took their toll.

I awoke to bright sun­light and a feel­ing of be­ing aground. As the tide had risen dur­ing my sleep, my Kon­sort had lifted her skirts and sailed near an ex­pen­sive cata­ma­ran and amaz­ingly passed over some nasty rocks, end­ing up on the beach and tak­ing the ground gen­tly dur­ing the night. I looked out of the com­pan­ion­way to see a man and his dog walk­ing past the stern. Even the an­chor had re­set it­self.

For­tu­nately no dam­age was done, and once the tide was in, I hur­ried off to an­chor prop­erly some­where else.

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