June 12 – Stromness to Wick

By | June 12, 2012

We set off from Stromness at 10:30 with a dropping forecast N F4/5 bound for Wick via the notorious Pentland Firth.

The wind was gusting as the showers of rain passed by. Our wind instrument has been broken for days now so the only indication of wind speed has been the look of the sea and how well balanced the tiller feels. Someone needs to go up the mast!


Hoy from Scapa Flow

Hoy from Scapa Flow

There was a lot of wind in Scapa Flow but it was all behind us as we flew along with one reef and a small genoa. After negotiating the various obstacles – mainly gas pipeline structures – we turned southwards passed South Ronaldsay and out into the Pentland Firth.

The trip across was fast and relatively smooth. No overalls as it was neaps plus we had worked out the tides and had picked up the first part of the east going flow.

As we closed the mainland – Duncansby Head – the tide started to kick in and we were doing 8 knots. The swell picked up off the head and we started gybing downwind to maintain our boat speed. There was a big swell running into Wick bay but it died down as we closed the harbour entrance.

Duncansby Head - the top right corner of Scotland

Duncansby Head – the top right corner of Scotland

Currently in Wick marina – a new marina in the old dock – and planning tomorrows trip. It’s into the wind again (50nm due south) to Banff on the south shore of the Moray Firth.

Today’s Passage Stats

Stromness to Wick: 40 nm / 7 hrs

Sailed 6 hrs / motored 1 hr

Total distance sailed: 1022 nm


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