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Tobermory to Oban 22 June 2007

Having had a very pleasant evening yesterday, and after a good nights sleep, I am ready to head off down the sound of Mull to Oban. One of my sailing friends, Jan Davies should be in Oban today. We first met in Southampton in 1996, when I was doing my day skipper, I was with Ron and Sally, some friends from night school, and we all joined Grumpy Bear, a Westerly Typhoon, owned by Philip Marshal Sailing School. We sailed to Guernsey and back via Cherbourg, but the crossing to Cherbourg was a bit lumpy, and all the crew were sick, except for Philip Marshal, the skipper, Jan, and myself. Because of the long voyage, Philip said I needed to return to complete the course, because I hadn't done enough elements, so I returned in September to complete the course over a weekend. Ron, his wife Eileen, his son Jonathan, Sally and Jan joined us again, and we all had a fun time. Ron, Jan, and me have sailed together with various fiends on occasions ever since. I am usually the skipper, and as Ron charters the yachts he is usually the Admiral. Jan has been working as first mate on the yacht Corryvreckan a 65ft charter yacht. Skipper Chris Lindesay, who is the new owner of Corryvreckan, charters out of Oban, so they should be there today, and as it's Jan's last day It would be good to Meet up before she leaves.

I let go the buoy at 10:00 and head out round Calve Island, and into the Sound of Mull. I have the tide with me, and the wind is F3 from the North. The sky has very little cloud, and the sun is shining so although it's not too warm, its going to be a good day. 12:00 and I am approaching Ardtornish Point, and catching a tug towing a dredger. There are porpoise playing on the bow of the dredger, and also with the tow line marker buoy.

 I know this area quite well and with the clear weather I am able to use pilotage, which is interesting identifying the visual references from the chart such as Duart Castle,  which is an easy example.

13:05 and I am heading towards Oban passing the tip of Lismore Island, and heading for the channel between Karrera and the mainland. Oban is a busy port with regular ferry services to the Islands, so caution and a good lookout will be required to enter the port at Oban safely.

I don't know what Corryvreckan looks like, but I know she is large and ketch rigged, so finding her should be easy enough. I enter Oban at the same time a ferry is leaving, and there is another astern about a mile, so caution and a keen eye is good practise. I telephoned Jan earlier, so I know the anchorage across at Karrera is where I need to be, and as I approach I can see Corryvreckan on a buoy,  Jan is on deck waving, so I reef the genoa, and pick up the buoy that's closest.  Jan recorded the Manoeuvre  

I went aboard Corryvreckan and was welcomed by Jan & Chris, we went below into the cavernous lounge and had a coffee and biscuits, caught up with any news, and I had a quick tour. The space seems enormous aboard, compared to Anita 'A'. The galley is huge with house size units, the cooker is a normal household size too. Jan and Chris still have lots of work to do cleaning and re-stocking, so after helping to unload the rib, I decided to move Anita to a buoy on the Oban side so I can easily get ashore for the shops, and also find the library to answer any emails received. We agreed to meet in the pub later. Before I left Corryvreckan I had a call from Yorkshire Television for an interview to update their viewers of my progress.

After picking up the buoy I rowed ashore to find the pub and arrived with just enough time for a drink and chat before Jan's train leaves for London at 18:00. Well that was short  but it was good to see Jan and to catch up on our exploits, Chris and me walk Jan to the station and wave good buy as the train pulls out. I bid Chris farewell as he left the harbour in the rib and returned to my boat to  prepare my evening meal.

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