Days 126 and 127, the weekend of 29th and 30th September 2018. Sailing ( sails up ) from Whitby to Scarborough and then a rest day in ‘kiss me quick’ land.

The team…. Mike, Toby and Robert ( who joined Poli Poli on Thursday evening ) after the sumptuous fish feast in the Magpie Restaurant, Whitby. Well the team… now of three… set off from Whitby Marina at exactly 8.20am…. to pass through the 8.30am Saturday morning swing bridge. Out to sea by 8.40am , and sails up and roaring along on a beam reach, southwards.


Mike on the bow, approaching Whitby swing bridge…. the red thing! Sunny, blue skies….a nice morning. They only opened half the bridge for us!!


The engine was turned off beyond the Whitby harbour entrance, the sails went up and that magic sound…. the rustle and ripple of our bow wave as 15 tons of boat and machinery begin to move through the water. Mother Nature takes over and wind powers us on our way. We did not have to hurry as there was a tidal constraint in getting into Bridlington. …. so we carved out a track in the cold North Sea and made 5 to 6 knots of speed.

The sun in the east made it extremely difficult  to spot the many different coloured lobster pots that came our way. All three of us resorted  to sun glasses. Plan A was to try and get to Bridlington and a pontoon berth. If that did not happen, then Plan B was to divert to Scarborough if there was no berth available.


Apart from lobster pots, not a lot happened for the first few hours….. we sailed south with a somewhat fickle wind and T made mugs of hot tea for the team. Robert demonstrated his wide knowledge of the bird life that flew all around the boat, pointing out the many varied species.


Well he might be looking out to sea for lobster pots…. must have been taken before putting sun glasses on.

Mike made a phone call to Bridlington when we were about 6 miles out to sea from Scarborough… to check with Bridlington that there was a pontoon berth available for Poli Poli.

The marina offer was a) there is no space on a full pontoon for you, we can let you have half a pontoon and you will sit on the mud at low tide….and b) otherwise you can moor up against the harbour wall but you will be very uncomfortable from the swell.

So a quick conflab….. all agreed, contact Scarborough marina and see what they have. This we did…. they could offer a proper side on ‘alongside’ pontoon berth in their marina and there would be no sitting on the mud! Problem was it was an hour to low tide… and would we be able to get into Scarborough harbour?

I explained about our lifting keel and that we would have a 0.8m draft with keel up. So the Harbour Master agreed to let us in, raft up against a catamaran and wait a couple of hours as the tide came in…. then move to the long side on berth with shore power and water. We then understand, that he … the harbour master, went off duty.

It was pretty essential to get into Scarborough harbour…. we did not want to have to stay out at sea and do ‘circles” holding station until the tide filled up the harbour. There was concern re a rising wind speed.

It took us an hour to take the sails down, start the engine and motor swiftly towards Scarborough… about 6 n.miles. We arrived at the harbour entrance and reporting in to HM on the VHF radio at Port Control… were informed…. ‘Who are you? I know nothing about you…. I have just come on duty… are you the blue sailing boat in the entrance? He should not have agreed to let you in at low water’….and so on.

We explained as best we could. The NW wind had now got up and was blowing at 20 knots…and we were sitting there with a meter of water underneath…. and getting less and less by the minute! Finally HM agreed to let us enter…. and raft up against the catamaran. Gingerly, slowly slowly we approached said vessel… but at the last moment I decided to pull out as it was totally unsuitable proposition ( for at least 3 different reasons ).

The HM, now being extremely helpful…. suggested that we might like to raft up against a blue trawler with the registration GY7447 on its bow. We accepted his generous gesture as the said vessel sat in 3 meters of water…. and motored over to GY7447 …. where we rafted up with our mooring lines. GY7447 was already rafted up against a bigger trawler on the inside. Both boats were extremely smelly. GY …. is Grimsby…. and Margaret later informed me that they had lost…. again!


Photo above…. Poli Poli in a raft of three in Scarborough fish docks…. two on the inside are trawlers…. GY7447 is next to Poli Poli. The marina is over to the left in much shallower water.

Clambering over both trawlers and then up a 40 foot vertical ladder ( it was now low tide )…. was our next adventure…. in order to get a hot drink and something to eat. This we did…. and to cut a long story short…. we finally moored up to a decent side on berth over in the marina area… after two failed attempts ( not enough depth ) by 5pm! Later that evening Robert’s wife Judy and daughter Harriet joined us for yet another sumptuous meal in a lovely restaurant along the waterfront that same evening. All’s well that ends well as they say.


Photo below evening meal in Scarborough restaurant…. right to left… Robert, Harriet, Mike, Judy and Toby.



Mike with his steak plus favourite dish….. battered onion rings.

Total distance sailed for the day : 21.0 n.miles.

Total distance since leaving Eastbourne: 2,284.9 n. miles.

Day 127, Sunday 30th September 2018….. Rest Day in Scarborough… the “kiss me quick” hats end.

Scarborough Marina  is located in an old fish dock below the main street that runs along the waterfront. Scarborough is a big town… and like all towns has its “nice” part as well as a “grotty” area. The Marina is below the main waterfront which is full of fast food restaurants, not nice cafes, and amusement arcades, a big wheel and fairground plus a glitzy casino. The day we arrived…. Saturday…. and it was heaving with Yorkshire folk out for a day at the seaside…. so very, very busy. Sunday…. not so sunny, so a bit quieter. So less “kiss me quick” hats.

In the morning the boat was washed and cleansed of all the salt she had taken aboard on our trip down from Whitby. We were expecting my brother Giles and his wife Pam for a short visit and they duly arrived after midday. They came bearing gifts of food… fresh hens eggs from their own chickens and a delightful pear tart. We sat in the saloon and chatted, refreshed with tea made by Mike.

Giles, Pam and Toby…in the cockpit of Poli Poli, Scarborough Marina.


In the afternoon, T walked into the nicer part of Scarborough…  to South Bay…. very posh indeed, then the town centre and finally to a big Tesco store…. unusually not an out of town location. Back down through a park and well tended boating lake to the marina. Then a blog which did not work and a passage plan for the next day…. our trip to Grimsby. This involved some detailed planning as a consequence of the traffic ( ships ) separation scheme in the River Humber.


Mike and Pam on the pontoon…Sunday, 30th. September.



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