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Old 27-03-2016, 01:00   #1
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Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

Hi,

I'll be sailing the English channel soon and would love your secret recommendations for the safest/best anchorages/spots to fall a-dry in England, France and Belgium.

The boat is a 10.60m catamaran.

I'm specifically after anything which is NOT a marina.
Will preferably anchor whenever possible.

In the past I anchored a couple of times in commercial ports without issues, but that was in the Baltics.

Thanks for your recommendations, which will augment my own research.

Franziska

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Old 27-03-2016, 03:19   #2
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pirate Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

Poole harbour, Dorset.. the name belies the place.. once in the entrance if you turn right it leads to the moorings, marina's and commercial port.. however if you follow the channel to the left it takes you to some beautiful drying anchorages behind the islands.
Well worth the stop.
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Old 27-03-2016, 05:33   #3
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pirate Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

Some more anchorages..
Keyhaven behind Hurst Castle, Studland Bay SW corner, Portland Harbour in the North part, Salcombe and you can travel 5miles upstream to Kingsbridge.
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Old 27-03-2016, 06:13   #4
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Franziska View Post
Hi,

I'll be sailing the English channel soon and would love your secret recommendations for the safest/best anchorages/spots to fall a-dry in England, France and Belgium.
Start with the overall picture at http://www.jimbsail.info/tidal-europe/channel-all then drill down to the lower level pages for each area of the Channel.

It's a fairly crowded cruising area, so marinas and port facilities do take up a lot of space. But many great drying pools in N Britanny on sand at low water.

JimB
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Old 27-03-2016, 09:31   #5
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

The south coast has a lot of mud, so drying out isn't always the best option. Floating in just a few cms of water would suit you best, so tidal calculations pay dividends.

Chichester Harbour - Thornham Reach, East Head, Pilsey and Chichester Lake where it is always mud but you can either anchor and stay afloat or dry if you prefer.
Bembridge. Safe offshore in anything NW round to South, or dry out in the harbour by the club.
Newtown creek, crowded in summer but dry out inshore of all the keel boats.
Dartmouth has many places a few miles upriver and you are really spoilt for choice
Plymouth has many places where you can dry out happily going right up to Cargreen - just pick a spot where there is little commercial or naval traffic, best either in the St Germans river or N of Saltash.
Newton Ferrers - just outside the river entrance provided the weather is settled.
The rivers between Plymouth and Salcombe are also possibilities although you need to get in and out while the weather is settled. Very rural and beautiful when inside.
Then there is all of the Fal River which is cheap and welcoming once you get above Falmouth.

You can spend a very comfortable season learning your boat and enjoying anchorages on the South Coast. You will almost always have to pay harbour dues but theses aren't too bad if you are only staying a couple of days in each place. If you are down west and need to leave your boat for a period, the upper reaches of the Fal are very safe and cheap.
Have a good time!
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Old 27-03-2016, 10:06   #6
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

Hey great suggestions so far. Many thanks.
Also ordered the visitmyharbour stick. Should arrive in few days.

Thanks again,

Franziska

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Old 27-03-2016, 10:35   #7
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

On the S (French) shore, I would suggest:
- "Havre de Rothéneuf", just E of St Malo (dries almost completely);
- Rance river, beyond the lock on the dam;
- Baie de La Fresnaie, in W or S wind;
- Bay of Paimpol (dries, beware of oyster beds);
- A few anchorages around île de Bréhat (Bréhat island), beautiful and often crowded in summer;
- Trieux River just south of Bréhat (deep, strong tidal stream: good anchor needed);
- Tréguier River;
- Port Blanc (dries in part, rolly in NW wind);
- Many drying anchorages in Bay of Morlaix;
- The drying port in Île de Batz;
- Aber Wrac'h (there is now a marina but there is still room to anchor);
- Aber Benoît is narrower but you can find room upriver;
- I'm not sure if anchoring space remains in Aber Ildut.

Anchorages in Ouessant and Molène islands are safe only in good weather.

Beyond Pointe St Mathieu, you are out of the Channel but there are many anchorages in Rade de Brest.

Around St Malo and Jersey, the tide range frequently reaches 12m, so you need a long anchor rode if you don't want to take the ground at low tide.

Alain
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Old 27-03-2016, 12:57   #8
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

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Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Poole harbour, Dorset.. the name belies the place.. once in the entrance if you turn right it leads to the moorings, marina's and commercial port.. however if you follow the channel to the left it takes you to some beautiful drying anchorages behind the islands.
Well worth the stop.
Franziska,

At high water you can take your cat all the way up to Wareham and moor just before the bridge - great place!
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Old 27-03-2016, 13:28   #9
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

" secret recommendations for the safest/best anchorages/spots to fall a-dry in England, France and Belgium."


My day is not wasted! "spots to fall a-dry" is a term I've never heard before. I love this forum!
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Old 27-03-2016, 21:59   #10
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

As a monohull sailor in rocky New England waters, I have considered the prospect of a catamaran being able to sit on dryland at low-water with the right kind of bottom. But I have no experience with the actual practice. Is there a purpose in doing this beyond cleaning your bottom? Is it a nice way to have a quiet night "at anchor" in high winds? Is the odor of the seabed bad?
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Old 28-03-2016, 01:30   #11
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

@Symphony

It's is a mixture of things.
The first time you experience it, it's quite magic. A faint gurgel sound when the last water leaves, a gentle last movement, the sound of birds looking for breakfast on the naked seabed..... ;-)

Quiet, calm, harmony with nature come to mind.

Tranquillity!

Walking dry footed to shore or taking a stroll on the seabed is equally nice.

If you are in a spot sheltered from the surf you are of course well protected when a-dry.
Mind you the less water there is the lower the waves too.


Over here in the tidal areas of the North Sea we do it often.

My experience is for now with the moderate tidal range of the Dutch and German Waddenzee though.
Sure others have more hints as to how to do it best in areas with higher tidal ranges.


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Old 28-03-2016, 05:35   #12
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

Any more thoughts on the coast east of Cherbourg (to about Dunkerque) and east of Southampton (to about Dover)?

I am very happy about the nice recommendations so far, many thanks!
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Old 29-03-2016, 11:54   #13
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

You can anchor in Dover Harbour, do call VTS as you approach, as it's a very busy harbour. I always feel like a small Cessna landing at Heathrow!

Cherbourg has a good anchorage too. Just to the west of the marina entrance, but don't go too far west as you'll go into the military area, and they take a very dim view of WAFIs who can't read their charts.

Indeed, Cherbourg is one of the finest harbours IMHO. There's room in the inner harbour for a J class to round up and take her sails down. The town is welcoming and offers all facilities. Just make sure your approach is up tide, as it gallops past!.
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Old 29-03-2016, 13:29   #14
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

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Any more thoughts on the coast east of Cherbourg (to about Dunkerque) and east of Southampton (to about Dover)?

I am very happy about the nice recommendations so far, many thanks!
Here's a few round the solent..
http://www.psyc.uk.com/Anchorages.pdf%202014.pdf

Before that from the east Rye would be worth having a look at if you can take the ground. Not been there but heard it's lovely, otherwise nothing much til Dover as mentioned above. And Dover don't like you going ashore if anchored so only really handy as a passage stop off.
Though I've anchored off Brighton beach before to wait the tide in flat calm.

And a couple more websites to help the dreaming
Navionics Webapp
Harbours
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Old 29-03-2016, 13:39   #15
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Re: Save anchorages on both sides of the English Channel / La Manche?

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Originally Posted by Symphony View Post
As a monohull sailor in rocky New England waters, I have considered the prospect of a catamaran being able to sit on dryland at low-water with the right kind of bottom. But I have no experience with the actual practice. Is there a purpose in doing this beyond cleaning your bottom? Is it a nice way to have a quiet night "at anchor" in high winds? Is the odor of the seabed bad?
Read Maurice Griffiths, great books, fun reads, good sailing tips. He sailed off the east coast of the UK between the wars.
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