Tidal stream atlas

30/11/2009 15:15:57
I have tried google etc but I cant find a detailed a tidal stream atlas for the whole of the Salcombe esturary coveing the entire 12 hour tidal range. Does such a thing exsist?

30/11/2009 15:47:56
The Admiralty Chart should cover it, bought from any Chart agent and most Chandlers of repute.

30/11/2009 15:54:52
John Murrell

To the best of my knowledge no such a thing exists.

One of the joys of the Estuary is that the shape of the 'bed' is constantly changing - for example at the moment at the top of the tide it is almost completely covering Millbay and the left side of Smalls has disappeared - and thats only what I can see from my office window; this will have an impact on the currents on the Portlemouth shore if nothing else.

Dan Alsop has written articles on the way around the Salcombe race course as has Pat Blake, both are enlightening but I think that both will admit that its only scratching the surface. There are numerous little back eddies and sneedles that all add up to a get you into jail card!

The best way to look at the estuary is with a conventional admirality chart, work out where the sandbanks should be, where they could have moved to and the effect that it would have on the water passing around / over them, and even then you are guaranteed to be wrong; watch the flow of the water around mooring bouys - its amazing how often two bouys almost next to each other have totally different rates / angles of flow hitting them.

And most importantly remember the Estuary is tidal - I am always amazed by the number of Merlineers (top helms included!) who think that water only flows one way 'cause thats what happens on a river.................

Now having got to grasps with the tidal flow what about the wind? Ah! now there's another story!

And before you ask, yes I work in Salcombe, sail there and will be doing Merlin Week!!!!!!

30/11/2009 16:43:02
Compared to what the bloody wind is or isn’t doing the tide’s a doddle…

30/11/2009 17:31:00
So John, working, living, and sailing in Salcombe, we look forward to seeing you leading the pack around next year.

01/12/2009 08:35:01
John Murrell

I have won more races in Salcombe than I care to remember - from the Watch House!!
On the water; that's a different matter!!!

01/12/2009 08:36:16
John Murrell
Oh and the ultimate excuse - don't live in Salcombe.................

01/12/2009 09:20:04
All I can see out of my office window is tarmac and brick! :-(

01/12/2009 09:51:10
Andrew M
I have come to the conclusion that if you are a mid-fleet sailor you will NEVER get lucky by going a different way to the bulk of the fleet but there are a few places in the estuary to avoid like the plague (Ditch End) and when sailing against the stream there are particular places to try and cross the stream, e.g. from the Portlemouth ferry stage over into the Yawl moorings.  The Bag is impossible to sort out but it is quite shallow in the middle and the edges are not as helpful as you might think, except the little bays by Scoble point where there are consistent back eddies.  Best to stay in the wind.  The tide rips out by Snapes point and there is a big wind shadow a surprising way out from it.  Look at the articles in the magazine.  If you can memorise what the tide does in the bag and remember it when you are neck and neck with 3 other boats all under spinny and struggling for control on a tight gusty reach, you are not sailing in my bit of the fleet!

01/12/2009 11:49:01
Oh hum, it's a shitty job but someone has to do it, and it seems to be John, lucky bu66er. I recall one race a couple of years back during the club regatta. It was very light and the first buoy was no. 7. The RS200's struggled to the ferry steps, where they were caught up by the handicap fleet, that started  5 mins behind them.  One RS200 on the Portlemouth side stopped, and had a leisurely fag (as in tobacco) twenty minutes later the wind picked up as a sea breeze. At this point This RS200 jumped back into his boat, and sailed up to and through the fleet on this gust. He won the race with hundreds of yards clear. The beauty of Salcombe.


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