Bolton School, Duke of Edinburgh Gold Expedition Voyage, Ketch, KT43

Saturday 8 – Friday 14 July

Entry Five

Due to strong winds we weren’t able to sail to our original destination of Clyde Marina so we had to plan a new route plan to Largs. The team worked together to get the new course finished before the leaving time. We then proceeded to do the engine check. Once the boat was prepared with slipped lines  we left the port to Largs. We were able to first put up the genoa; then when the wind picked up we put up the other three sails. We had to tack many times as our course was heading in the wrong direction for the best wind. This meant tacking was the best option. We had a lesson from Mike about how the boat sails and how external forces affect the boat. It was very exciting and interesting to learn. Unfortunately the wind started to drop so we had to take the sails down for the last stretch to Largs. We played a few games to pass the time. Once we arrived, we all walked to Tesco to get more food for dinner. However they didn’t have any quorn so we had to go to the co-op and Morrisons to find some. This was a stupid idea as it started to pour down and we all got soaked except for Khadijah who responsibly brought her coat. Imogen had a small breakdown that she had lost her phone so went for a small trek round Largs Marina, but thankfully it was under her bag all along.  Izzy and Katie cooked a delicious albeit spicy curry for all the crew. Jess, Grace, Imogen and Khadijah washed up.

Have a crabtastic day from the Seagals!

Entry Four

Much to Abby’s surprise she woke up to the smell of pancakes drifting from the saloon. Grace and Izzy made pancakes for the crew to help them power through the difficult navigation awaiting them in the day ahead. We were very happy that we were able to prepare the boat fully with limited help. The trip was easy until we reached the Kyle Channel. We found this part of the journey very beautiful which was enhanced by the blazing sun. Grace took over helm through the challenging section, with help from Abby and Imogen navigating round the different types of buoys to avoid any shallow water. They were useful to help tell Grace what each different buoy meant. We found this section reduced to a depth of 4.8 metres which was only double the depth of the boat. While they navigated, Katie, Jess, Khadijah and Izzy made lunch for the crew. They made a buffet of sandwiches, pick food and salad. Imogen was very nice to make Grace a plate of food while she was at the helm. Abby navigated through the last section to Port Bannatyne. We were happy to survive a voyage without a sausage saga. We explored around Port Bannatyne taking many pictures and trying to skim stones. In the evening the crew planned the route for tomorrow. After Grace and Abby made dinner of chicken pesto pasta and a tofu tomato pasta for Khadijah and Jess. Imogen helped them both to wash up and clean all the surfaces while listening to banging tunes, while the rest of the crew recorded the video blog.

Have a breezy day from the seagals!

Entry Three

This morning we finished our dinner menu ready for shopping. We made sure we catered for our vegan and vegetarian requirements (thanks Khadijah and Jess). We were given a budget so we made sure that we chose our food carefully. After a stressful shopping trip we ran down the pontoon with our shopping trolley full of food.  Don’t worry we returned the trolley which was useful as we forgot to get the milk. Once all the food was put away, we organised all the maps and equipment together to plan our route for today and tomorrow. We used our new skills to direct a careful route through a tight and shallow channel. After planning our route for today we set sail for Portavadie. We weren’t able to put the sails up from the lack of wind and it was only a short journey. We had Sausage Saga pt2 (Katie’s redemption), as we were pulling into Portavadie bay; Mike let a sausage (fender) free but Katie was there for the rescue and she retrieved the sausage back in. Portavadie has very good facilities which the crew was very pleased about. We were so happy to be able to have a short relax in a pool before showering and coming back to cook tea. The pool was a much needed break and it had a amazing view which we all enjoyed so much. Jess and Khadijah took on the chefs roles for tonight and cooked a delicious stir fry for the crew with Quorn for our vegetarian and special vegan noodles. Katie and Imogen stepped in and washed up. In the evening we recorded our video blog to conclude the day.

Good night from the seagals!

Entry Two

Today we travelled to Tarbert. We started off the day with a lesson of navigation from Neil! With our new knowledge we plotted our route to Tarbert, using sticks and a plotter. Once the course was set, we left Largs Marina. Thankfully the weather improved although there was a lack of wind meaning we couldn’t sail. Abby, Izzy and Imogen prepared a buffet for lunch. The Crew was happy to listen to Grace and Abby’s recreation of (many) musical songs eg. Wicked, Hairspray and Mamma Mia. They also sang a bit of Queen and Pitch Perfect. Mike even sang a famous sailing song which we had never heard. The rest of the trip was pretty basic until we were arriving at Tarbert and Katie let a sausage lose in the sea. WELL DONE KATIE! (lies – Katie) . After a lot of SAUSAGE OVERBOARD shouting and Abby using her safety lessons to not take her eyes off the sausages. All was ok, Mike to the rescue! Grace was very pleased to finally be able to press the man overboard button!!!! In case you were worried the sausage was saved and is now warm at home. We sat round and made a stock check to finalise our dinner meal. Khadijah, Katie, Izzy and Jess went to the co-op to check out the stock while Grace and Imogen made dinner; Abby poured in the quorn and the sauce! Khadijah and Jess washed up.

You can all rest easy now after the eventful Sausage Saga. Goodnight x

Entry One

Yesterday, we arrived at Kip Marina! It was a long hard road to get here after the two cancelled trains from the far south, Preston. After meeting the crew, of two (Neil and Mike), we boarded TENACITY OF BOLTON. We got briefed and had much needed drinks and biscuits after our arduous 13 minute trek from the train station. WE HAD BAGS. NO WHEELS. Once we (Abby, Grace and Izzy) claimed the best beds; we went to Sainsbury’s. There we made the near-impossible decision of what crisps to buy so we settled for tea cakes and pretzels. By 6 we were ready for tea, the classic Tall Ships fajitas! All helped to prepare and cook.

Today. The first day. We embarked on our rainy journey to Largs from Inverkip after crumpets! YUM YUM. The boat is very bad at going backwards so the sausages (fenders) were out, along with Rover the dumpling! Sadly it rained. A lot. We were able to take turns at the helm. Izzy, Abby and Katie showed off their amazing dance moves while riding the waves. We (Not Grace she was holding Rover at the bow) enjoyed the Scottish sea life of a porpoise and multiple jellyfish. We enjoyed a good cuppa on our journey but we got told off as making tea (hiding down below from the rain) doesn’t help us pass our DofE- apparently. We dropped the anchor but Grace messed up and nearly lost it. (not my fault – Grace). Imogen, Abby and Jess prepared a buffet lunch which the crew enjoyed. Khadijah cleaned. We then sailed to the dock, Largs Marina. There the team split in two, Jess, Imogen, Khadijah and Abby went into the town while Grace, Katie and Izzy stayed to prepare tea. Grace and Katie took on the chefs roles to cook curry. Abby, Imogen and Jess volunteered to wash up. Then we wrote this. You’re welcome!