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Piers and Lin du Pré are the owners of the Fleming 55 Play d'eau, based in Beaucette Marina, Guernsey in the Channel Islands at N49° 30’.197 W002° 30’.350.

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Leg 13 (2015) – La Rochelle to St Martin de Ré

We anchoed in 3m of water in this glorious bay
click to enlarge

I was in the middle of a lovely dream when the alarm rudely intruded and woke me. We had an hour before we needed to be hovering outside the 0645 lock, ready to exit the Les Chalutiers basin.

Today, the destination was St Martin de Ré.

Plan A

First, a hearing check. Thankfully, all eight of our collective’s ears were in good working condition despite the previous night’s Franco Folies’ best attempts to increase the sales of hearing aids.

Second, the mandatory visit to the boulangerie for our breakfast croissants and pains au chocolat.

Third, a review of the proposed passage: lock out at 0645, motor to a lovely sandy bay on the south east coast of the Île de Ré, anchor, have breakfast, swim and have lunch before motoring north along the east coast of the island to take the first lock into the heavily fortified town of St Martin.

Plan B

John dived off Play d’eau and swam in the 23°C sea
click to enlarge

Given the cloudy skies and breezy weather, we implemented plan B and nipped into the close-by Les Minimes marina to wait for the weak weather front to pass. Spending time at anchor in these conditions would not be pleasant.

Two hours after croissants the sun came out, the breeze disappeared and the waters calmed. Time to revert to Plan A.

Anchoring out

What a great time we had. The sunlit bay was a pure delight.

Having anchored in 3m of water, Beryl and Lin sat on the transom dangling their feet in the sea whilst John showed us to be the wimps we were by diving in and having a great swim.

St Martin, here we come

After 40 minutes of motoring we entered the fortified walls of St Martin, passed through the open lock and were directed to the same mooring we’d had two years ago.

It’s such a treat to be back here. Such a beautiful ancient town. A gem.

Met data

An alien spacecraft disguised as a boat?
click to enlarge

La Rochelle: NE3/4, low cloud cover, moderate visibility
Sea state: Choppy
St Martin de Ré: N2, clear skies, hot sun, no loud music

Nav data

Times are FST.

Date: 15 July 2015
Departed La Rochelle: 0645
Arrived St Martin de Ré: 1520
Pinchpoint: Les Chalutiers and St Martin lock times
Navigation: Pilotage
Time en route: 8hr 35min, inlcuding time in Les Minimes and anchoring time
Planned distance: 11.6nm

Tech issues: Nil

Piers and Lin
from the Pilot House of
Play d’eau
Fleming 55

(click on the photos below to enlarge, and use the left/right arrows)

2 comments to Leg 13 (2015) – La Rochelle to St Martin de Ré

  • Hil

    It really does look utterly beautiful- a glorious, glorious day in a beautiful, beautiful place. All your spirits must have been running high. I love the photos of the sailing lessons- how wonderful for those children. Did you eventually have a swim? I think even I might have swum in water that warm.

    Lol Hil x x x

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