Stuck in Stornoway

What happens when your engine is toast? Trilleen is stopped in Stornoway with a serious defect to her engine. There has been a cascade of failures. I and local engineers think the that the block – the hunk of cast metal which contains the whizzy whooshy bits of the engine has died. Unfortunately my diligent … Read more

Pinned in East Loch Roag

Common dolphin hunting in East Loch Roag

Trilleen and I have been pinned in East Loch Roag by a series of weather systems waiting for a passage to Shetland. The meteorology models have offered 25-40kts – at times gusting more than that an 4-6m seas. So I have been exploring some of the loch and spent a week alongside at the shiny … Read more

Spooky at St Kilda

St Kilda is a spooky awesome place, surprisingly large for those of us who normally only see it as a tiny dot on the Admiralty chart. It comes into view as far as 40nm out, rising on the horizon like a fully rigged sailing ship. The sun was setting directly behind the islands and a … Read more

On the road to Mingulay and Eriskay

With the happy news that my burn was fit to sail on, Trilleen positioned back south from Castlebay towards Barra Head, enjoying a brief but satisfying light wind sail out of the harbour limits before the wind fell further away. The forecast was for the wind to fall lighter and lighter from the north before … Read more

On To Barra

Barra lies 130 miles to the north of the Foyle Estuary, across the approaches to the North Channel and into the South Minch. These are unforgiving open waters exposed to the full fetch of the Atlantic rolling in from St Johns, Canada, 2800 nautical miles to the west. As such they demand the greatest of … Read more

Getting to the start line

A man in a grey lifejacket, blue jacket and purple hat is sitting on the deck of a boat which is sailing to windward

Trilleen is finally positioned on the North Irish coast, ready to cross her track from 2022 and begin the next leg of her Round Britain and Ireland sail. Up to this point this season has been all about getting to the start line. This is the point at which it all starts to get very real and I face some long testing passages ahead

A new year at the Mull of Kintyre

Trilleen and I marked the arrival of New Years day during the shrouded darkness of a Scottish winter night rounding the Mull of Kintyre. The headland has an evil reputation for angry overfalling waves and eddies to often agitated by violent storms. This New Years morning though it was quiescent in the window between two … Read more

Waiting is part of sailing

Waiting is part of sailing. For weather, for tide through refit and during postponements of a race’s start. In all these I and every sailor, wait in eager expectation of the moment at which our vessel again cleaves the water, a growing wake behind her. These waits are mostly short, or at least have a … Read more