This section of the web site is a log of the 2008 voyage around some of our favourite spots on the the northern Norfolk Broads. As you follow us on our way you will find links to more detailed pieces of information on this site and links to others where they are better informed.
As you read along remember that there are only 20 locations on the northern Broads that suit our party of several boats full of thirsty sailors and 11 stops for lunch and overnight. Also the are a few ‘Must Have’ locations so we do get to know them pretty well.
The party of 14 souls met at the Falgate pub in Potter Heigham for the regular warm up lunch and to meet Chris, Fiona and the couple of others. Everyone arrived in good order, and the weather forecast was studied in some detail so to come up with an outline plan for our week. The general situation was that the early part of the week was expected to be categorised by strong, cold, easterly winds. On Wednesday the wind was expected to swing round through the south to the south west, the temperature to rise and the wind strength to decrease. As a result, it was generally felt the best way to handle this was to head eastwards first as the effect of the wind could be eased a bit by sailing in the trees.
In due course we set off for Hunter’s Yard. Then we were allocated our boats. There were four Hustlers, one Wood boat and the last boat was “Tarn” being hired separately from Colin Buttifant has that has a small diesel engine which suited Peter, Brian & Chris. When you are in the Hunter’s boatyard you are well sheltered from the easterly wind, but the advice from Graham was to use two reefs as the wind on the open river was much stronger. Everyone agreed to this and lots of tucking and tying commenced. As soon as Mike and I towed our boat to the end of the Dyke for raising sail the strength of the wind was evident, even though we were still partially protected.
In the party we had one boat with two people new to Hustlers and one where the helm had only been one time before. As a result it was decided that a short leg down to Thurne Lion for Saturday evening would act as a shakedown cruise. As we reached down Womack water the boats skipped along very nicely with the wind increasing further notch when we reached the main river and turned downwind and downstream.
Both of the relatively inexperienced helms found it a very steep learning curve as there are many details to get right when sailing a Hustler. It’s not that it is particularly complicated, but there is an order in which things should be done so as to get the best and safest effect. All arrived safely at the white windmill at the end of Lion Dyke and tied up on the windward bank.
See the map of today’s sail from Womack to Thurne here.
This photo of our boat moored at Thurne Dyke shows a third generation being introoduced to the delights of Broads sailing.At the rear is myself on the left with my regular crew, Mike C. I was introduced to this amazing week’s sailing by my father in law, known as Robbie to this group, in 1971. He, together with Richard’s father and some chums from the Second World War first came in 1947. The group, in various guises, has been visiting every year since.
In the front row are my two sons, Damo & Tim. Damo has been once before but it was Tim’s first experience, and a memorable one, for all the right reasons, it turned out to be.
A pleasant evening was spent in the Lion, although the fact that we moved a couple of tables together as we were a large party was not viewed favourably by the person we believed to be the landlord. More of this chap later in the week.
Hustler 2 Tony & Mike C
Hustler Damo & Tim
Hustler 4 Peter W & Denis
Wood Violet Richard (Commodore), Mike D and Danny
Tarn Peter J, Brian & Alec