The Plan

Hello, I am Joe Barrett and in early May 2012 I set sail from Dartmouth, Devon, in Dawn Treader to sail clockwise around mainland Britain. The journey has been completed but this blog will be left in place to help any other people who either want to do the same kind of journey or are just interested in the voyage.

If you would like to contact me to discuss any aspects of the journey use:

You can see a map of the whole trip on The Plan page. Detailed statistics for the whole trip are given on  the Trip Stats page.

Here is a page showing all of the posts in order of the journey.

There were two of us on board for the whole trip – myself and Dave Lewis. Others, Peter George, Andrew Maunder and John Somers, joined us for various legs of the trip.

Joe Barrett – the whole trip

David Lewis – the whole trip

Peter George – Dartmouth to Arklow

Andrew Maunder – Ullapool to Peterhead

John Somers – Brighton to Dartmouth

Dawn Treader - Hallberg Rassey 34

Our route took us around Lands End and then up the east coast of Ireland. Then on through Scotland’s Western Isles and over the top of Scotland to Orkney. Finally down the East coast of Scotland and England then back along the English channel. A final distance of 1938 nautical miles.

See the Trip Stats page for a chart of journey so far plus details for each days passage

The main legs of the trip were:

  • Dartmouth to Milford Haven
  • Milford Haven to Arklow and up the East Coast of Ireland
  • North East Irish coast then to Scotland and to Oban
  • Oban to Stromness (Orkney Islands)
  • Orkney to Eyemouth
  • Eyemouth to Harwich
  • Harwich to Dartmouth


We originally had to finish by July 19th. The intention being to keep moving when possible but to take a rest days on bad weather days or following legs of over 50nm. This was not a race, or a dash around Britain. We were not trying to beat any records. Just to complete the circumnavigation and visit some interesting places. We finished on July 20th only one day beyond our plan.

See the latest Trip Stats for our progress or read the daily passage posts.

If you would like to contact me to discuss any aspects of the journey use:

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James Luetchford on February 17, 2012 at 9:17 am.

I found your site while buying our domain and thought it would be good to make contact with you. On the 6th June a crew of three will sail from Ramsgate in Kent to attempt a 3 handed nonstop, unaided circumnavigation of the entire British Isles, strictly under sail with no motor propulsion, incorporating Muckle Flugga, St Kilda then heading down the western coast of Ireland, around Fastnet Roc, The Scillys and finally the Channel Islands before finishing back at Ramsgate within an aimed completion time of less than 14 days
At some point our paths, I hope, will cross and it would be great to be in contact with you.

Good luck with your voyage.

Kind Regards
James Exodus X442


joebarrett on March 1, 2012 at 4:56 pm.


Your trip sounds a lot more hard work than ours!
We will keep an eye out for you. We will be Scottish waters from early June so will be watching for you on the West coast. Good luck with your trip.


Heather Coombs on May 11, 2012 at 7:52 am.

Hi lads, really hope you go to Wicklow harbour, such a nice friendly harbour with a great sailing club (bar), and lots and lots of friends who’d love to say hello. Send my love to Dave, the cats are grand! Heather.


Dick and Jean on May 18, 2012 at 2:53 pm.

Joe – We are following your trip with interest. Let’s hope the weather conditions improve so that you can get underway again. Rather you than me, I would have been in sickbay after the first big wave (Dick).


Kevan Sanderson on May 19, 2012 at 9:38 am.

Hey Dave, just to let you know with a little more notice I could have come with you as I am not doing anything these days! Also if if I hadn’t just had my hip replaced!
Anyway sounds like a great trip so may the wind always be at your back.
and the sun shine warm upon your face. Good luck and lets have some more pictures.


Dave Hanna on June 9, 2012 at 11:32 pm.

Ey up, on a very similar trip to yours but a bit behind you, so thought I’d make contact. At present waiting return of crew to Malahide, after a 3 week break. Started mid April from Emsworth ,but didn’t manage to escape Solent for 7 days ‘cos of the weather. Enjoying your blog. Shame my I.T. skills aren’t up to doing one. Never known the wind stay this long in North and East.


joebarrett on June 10, 2012 at 11:17 pm.

Glad to here from you. We stopped in Malahide – nice place. Currently in Stromness. Arrived a few hours ago from Kinlochbervie. 70 nm in 14 hrs. Good luck with the rest of your trip.



John Bradbury on June 11, 2012 at 3:58 pm.

Hi Joe !

The Junior Sailing Course at SGBA ended yesterday and the youngsters probably learnt more about the weather than sailing. But a great time was had by all 36 8-12 year olds. We must book you for a winter lecture ! Nice to be able to keep an eye on you. I have a tape of “round Britain Whizz” done by an RAF Hawk. You would find it more interesting now. Good luck and we look forward to the SGBA Regatta in September. John B., Commodore.


joebarrett on June 12, 2012 at 8:16 pm.

I look forward to seeing the Hawk round Britain tape. Will psych myself up to a talk … Joe


Frans Jooren & Jill Blackmore-Jooren on June 12, 2012 at 11:43 am.

Browsing on internet for information on rounding the Cape, we bumped into your blog. So far we called you “de Dauwtrapper” but now we know your names.
We are in Lochinver and plan 13/6 to Kinlochbervie and 14/6 to Scrabster, Stromness or Kirkwall.
We will follow you down the eastcoast, happy to have found the most recent
sailing-pilot anyone can wish.
Wish you happy and safe sailing!!
Frans & Jill o/b Guillemot (ST119).


joebarrett on June 12, 2012 at 8:13 pm.

Frans and Jill,
Hope your trip goes well to the Orkanys. We are in Wick now. Looks like you have a few days weather window to get there before Friday.
Joe and David


Mike Inglis on July 2, 2012 at 1:01 pm.

Joe looks like you are having a blast , Im off July 13-14 having signed up for the Clipper round the world race !

Try to connect before I go

Mike Inglis


joebarrett on July 2, 2012 at 4:43 pm.

Mike, nice to hear from you. Your Clipper Race trip sounds great and I imagine it will be much tougher than ours. We have been out for over 2 months now and are on the home stretch. Less than 500 miles to go. We have pubs in the evenings though …
Good luck with your trip.