Attending a Fleet Dinghy Cruise

If a calling notice has gone out advertising a daysail, there is some information that the Advanced Organiser (AO) and Officer Of the Day (OOD) needs in order to plan the day.

You will be asked on every occasion to let the AO and OOD know the following information.

1.Name(s) of attendees.

2. Contact numbers – including a telephone number for the evening before and early on the morning of the planned sail ( if plans need to change or adverse weather forecast – Force 6 or more on the Inshore Forecast).

3. Contact details for a someone for us to reach out to in case of incident (only to be used if you are incapacitated).

4. Level(s) of sailing experience/qualification?

5. Number of club dinghy spaces?

6. Will you bring your own dinghy – if so do you require a crew?

7. How many Club Buoyancy Aids? What size?

8. Do you have a tow bar/can you tow a club dinghy?

Note that we do not ask you to provide medical information which your skipper may need by electronic methods. If you have a medical condition, please brief your skipper and OOD discreetly and verbally.

We want to know this information for different reasons.

Requested Information Reason for asking for it
Name(s) of attendees. We need to know who is coming, if it’s more than one person please list all the people in your party
Contact numbers The planning of a dinghy daysail is sometimes very straightforward – if the weather has a stable pattern and the is a high likelihood of the cruise going ahead, then there’s no need to contact you at the last minute. However, sometimes the weather is changing every 6 hours, so we may need to contact you either late the night before or first thing in the morning. The Inshore Weather Forecast is published about 6am, and that’s the very last chance for the weather to be acceptable or unacceptable. We may need to contact you at the last moment and by phone or text. If we text you please text back to say you have received the last minute message.
Medical information If you have an ongoing medical concern and you may require those around you to take action to help you, both the OOD and your helm may need to know. Sailing is a physical activity, and you will be away from land for some hours, so we need to know of things that we need to look out for in order to maximise the chances of everyone being OK.
Contact details for a contact in case of incident In the unlikely chance of some kind of incident happening, we will want to be able to contact someone and let them know. Since your emergency contact may change from week to week, we ask this every time.
Level(s) of sailing experience/qualification? So that we can plan a balanced crew in our fleet.
Will you require a club dinghy space(s)? If you are a Dinghy Section member, we need to know that you want a space in a club boat. It might be that you crew a privately owned dinghy even if you have signed up to crew a club boat – this is a good thing as it gives you the chance to sail in different types of dinghy.
Will you bring your own dinghy – if so do you require a crew? So that we can plan the cruise.
Do you require Buoyancy Aids? So we know to bring them.
Do you have a tow bar/can you tow a club dinghy? So that we can plan the logistics to get the boats to the launch point.

Recent Posts

Mind the laundry – adventures on the Exe.

A last minute decision to take a trip to Exmouth on the evening of Friday 5th October saw Mel and Steve travel to Exmouth to join Nick and others on a daysail in the estuary on Saturday.

The forecast had been for F4-5 from the East and Topsham would have been an easy destination, but as the week progressed the forecast abruptly changed to zero for Saturday morning.

The millpond of the estuary – paddling only…

And it is onto a millpond of reflection that four boats began the paddle; Nick and his crew in his beautiful Trio, two people in the Wayfarer and two in an RS Vision (I apologise, I am useless at remembering names). After an hour, and with 20 minutes left of the flood tide it was clear that Topsham was not a likely destination, and we diverted to the unbelievably picturesque Lympstone. This is where the laundry comes into the story – the dwellings in Lympstone have no gardens, and the locals have taken to hanging their washing on the shoreline on ropes strung between great wooden poles to dry.

Foreshore laundry.

We avoided the laundry as we made land and shortly afterwards enjoyed the hospitality of Susannah’s Tea Room, a lovely traditional coffee-shop cum centre-of-village-life walkers cafe with yummy cake and drinks.
While we were enjoying the good company and coffee, the wind built to a F3 from the SW. The other boats headed back, and we followed the navigation marks to Topsham. As it happens, the twists and turns of the navigable river forced us to enjoy some lovely spinnaker broad reaches.
The water gets shallow in Topsham, and without local knowledge we chose not to land, because it looked like it would be easy to get stranded; at one point it looked as if we were in the middle of the channel and were in only in 70cm of water with 40m to the shore…

The beat back to Exe SC was in F3-4 was with the ebb tide under us. We briefly stopped at a secluded beach just north of Lympstone, nestled between the red Triassic rocks of the area, and mused that a Cody SC expedition to this estuary should include a stop here for lunch. In total, we sailed about 14 miles.

Triassic Rocks and Trio.

Thanks to Nick for arranging the facility at Exe SC, and pies, Laura for helping us drop the boat at the sailing club late on Friday, the skippers and crew of the other boats (I should have taken a pad and paper with me) for their engaging and knowledgable company at the coffee stop, and apologies again to Annie for shying a soft drink all over her just after she’d provided it to me at the bar.

The wind on Sunday was forecast F4-6, and when we got to the club, also blowing a F4-6 so we left the racers to it.

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