February Resolution

(null)Portencross Castle

I have never been keen on New Year resolutions, they normally fail before the end of January. One possible alternative is not to make a resolution until February and back date it to the beginning of the year.
I did that today during a sail around Great Cumbrae. My resolution is to sail in every month of 2015. Successive short sails in the first two months have given me the incentive. It’s not a big decision but my days of winters ashore are over, Crunluath is the better for it despite some minor damage and some serious wear on mooring ropes during last month’s gales.
After a spectacular drive up the M74 through snow covered Southern Uplands, Largs was as usual snow free and basking in weak but warm February sunshine. With next to no wind I opted to motor south hoping to meet some wind south of Hunterston. A glassy sea and increasing cloud created a dramatic view down the Hunterston channel to Portencross Castle, (photo above) one of two castles guarding this entrance to the Clyde. The other on Wee Cumbrae is not open to the public but some gallant efforts by volunteer enthusiasts have resulted in some restoration at Portencross.
Through the Tann the wind veered to the west and Crunluath tramped along.

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Looking north up the Clyde the Arrocher Alps and Ben Lomond appeared startlingly closer and higher than normal, one of the unique joys of off season sailing.

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Apart from fishing boats and the Cumbrae ferry only one other boat was out, a traditional wooden motor cruiser moored at Largs Yacht Haven.
To be fair it was a weekday and only the professionals, the unemployed and the retired were free to enjoy the pleasure of winter sailing.
Oddly it is back to student days for me, our university sailing season was in the winter, fifty years on I am back frostbiting! I recommend it.

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