Push The Boat Out – Camping and Fleet Dinghy Cruising in Poole Harbour

7 day camp on the edge of Poole Harbour
Adventurous and local dinghy sailing, weather permitting
Open to members from other organisations

Friday May 31st to June 7th

Camping at Poole Camp

Cody Sailing Club offer the opportunity for members of the Dinghy Cruising Association, GP14 Class Association and Combined Comet Trio Association to join us on our 42nd Poole Camp this year. The camp runs at the end of the Hampshire Summer half term, May 31st to June 7th, primarily because that’s the period for the Spring Tides and allows us to launch from the camping field.

In order to encourage participation in dinghy cruising we have extended free temporary membership to members of the DCA, GP14 CA and CCCA for just this camp.

The campsite is a commercial camp site run only for groups, and has a commercial nightly fee of £5 (to be confirmed for this year) per person. There is a flat £4 per person charge (irrespective of the number of nights you choose to stay with us) that Cody charge for using the waste facilities that we hire in. Tents only, no caravans or motor homes are allowed. Water is available from a tap in the field, and we hire in waste disposal. If you want to share a club portaloo in a loo tent you need to let me know. Nearest shops are in Corfe Castle and Wareham. Detailed directions will be sent to those who have expressed an interest.

Dinghy Cruising and Independent Sailing

The launch beach

We enjoy fleet dinghy cruising, and it is well known that members of the DCA are much more used to individual sailing.

There is no requirement or expectation that members of the DCA join in with our fleet cruising. You are welcome to join us, and not as you wish.

We sail as a fleet (or two separate fleets) and in order to sail together we need a fleet to have boats of roughly the same speed. If you wish to join us on our ‘Gold Fleet’, you’d need a vessel that is no slower than a Wanderer. We may also run a “Silver Fleet” if there is enough interest for slower boats and single handers, which will have a closer destination.

For close destinations we typically sail as a single fleet – Pottery Pier and Arne are places where we don’t split up – there’s enough fun to be had in the faster boats along the way that we’ll sail as a fleet and arrive at the same time.

Adventurous daysails include Swanage, Shell Bay Marine, round Brownsea, threading the islands, Rockley Point, Wareham, Studland, Bournemouth, Jazz Cafe Sandbanks and so on…

Social

In the evenings we sometimes gather as a single group and have a communal cook-up on individual BBQs which turns into a camp fire, and we sit around and chat, or we’ll invade each other’s tents and chat if the weather is wet. We might go out for one evening to a local pub as a group.

Daysail to Bournemouth Pier

Safety

In common with the many dinghy cruising organisations we do not run a safety boat. Many of us carry VHF Radios, mobile phones and orange smoke flares for attracting the attention of emergency services if we need to. Sailing as a fleet, mostly with 2 or 3 crew means that if there is someone in difficulty we generally rally round to help. We also help each other with launching and recovery. We expect you to have sufficient experience and a sufficiently seaworthy vessel to manage the risks of a given cruise yourself, and have published recommended minimum standards for your competency and equipment.

The fleet in Poole on a quiet cruise, coming back from Rockley Point

Launching and tides

Over the past 41 years that Cody has been using this venue, the creek that we launch into has gently silted up. On neaps, if there is a meteorological very high pressure, or strong winds from the West to suppress the height of the tide, on some days the water no longer gets high enough to allow dinghies to launch. During the height of Spring Tides there is plenty of water.

The tidal prediction for the Spring Bank Holiday is for neaps – there will be no water to launch into – even for kayaks. We have moved the camp to the weekend and week after the bank holiday to when we are in Springs, and the predictions suggest that we will have water to launch into on Friday.

Friday, sail at 08:00 and spend the whole day out, returning after 18:00, or return at noon but you might need to land the dinghy on the mud, anchor it for the afternoon and sail it or put it on the trailer in the evening.
Saturday, sail at 08:00 and spend the whole day out, returning after 18:00 or return at 13:00 and mud anchor it for the afternoon, ready to sail in the evening as well
Sunday, sail until 13:30 or recover after 19:00

The tides for the rest of the camp are good for a wide variety of daysailing and local sailing.

If you are interested in attending this event, please contact the address below.

We will send you full details of the location and other finer details, including full details of how to approach the camp (which you will only be able to do as a pre-agreed participant).

If you have any questions, and would like to know more, please let us know your phone number or skype address and we’re very happy to talk to you, so that you can get the best from the event.

We will only go if the weather is not forecasted to be torrential continuous rain and gales for the week. We go only if there’s every chance of sailing and the camping is not a test of continuous tent waterproofing.

If you want to talk to the organisers, and for more info please contact us on the address below.

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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