Friday, 23 October 2015


We returned to the boat, after a visit back to Canada, with the plan to get to Portugal for the Winter.  The best way was to do a series of overnight passages down the UK, then cross over the Channel to France, then harbor hop down to Portugal.  As with the best laid plans of mice and men, it was not to be.

All started well with a high pressure giving us calm seas, but no wind, so we motor sailed to Whitby, with stops at Peterhead and Blyth.

About to exit the Caledonian Canal.

We set up our "new to us" JRC 1500 Radar.

Our route across NE Scotland.

The sun sets behind us as we head East.

Our stops at Peterhead and Blyth were brief rest stops, with our leaving asap to take advantage of the settled weather.

Our next rest stop was to be Grimsby, but we were advised by several people not to miss Whitby, so we stopped there and were glad we did.  Whitby has an old Abby, in ruins, the Captain Cook museum, a picturesque harbor and excellent municipal museum.  Also, it is the town where "Dracula" was written.  All in all a very interesting town. 

Street mime "Dracula". 

Lobster/crab pots on the dock. 

Local pirate ship.

Harbor entrance.

Abby ruins above harbor.

Outer harbor.

Lift Bridge leading to inner harbor.

Bear on the roof.
The Captain Cook Museum is located in the building where he served as an apprentice merchant seaman. 

Model of his ship.


Cedar cloak obtained at Nootka Sound, BC.

View from the attic where Cook slept.

1/4 scale reproduction of his ship "discovery"

SV Passat II at the Whitby municipal dock.
Art on the dock.

Saturday, 17 October 2015


We had a nasty cross wind as we entered the Caledonian Canal making a tricky start to our passage.  We spend one night at Caley Marina, then head up to Loch Ness.

At the top of the first lock.

Sandra handles the lines in the locks.

The scenery along the way.

We attach ourselves to the only buoy available in Urquhart Bay then explore the castle.

The one and only buoy.

Passat II in Urquhart Bay.

Urquhart castle.

Siege Engine.

Castle and Visitor's Center from Loch Ness.

We spend a night at Fort Augustus, then had a great day sail back down Loch Ness.

On the dock at Fort Augustus.

Passat II and view down Loch Ness.

Canadian boat clearing the lock at Ft Augustus.

The center of Inverness is a good walk from the marinas so we did not spend much time in town.  One of the more interesting features is a iron foot bridge across River Ness.

Iron footbridge over River Ness.

Central Square.

Railway station guard.

Friday, 16 October 2015


Very nice day sail from the Kirkwall to Wick.  Wind and Current were favorable most of the way.

Wick is a small town with a historic harbor.  It was the center of the herring fishery for many decades.  At one time you could walk across the harbor on the fishing boats.  The old castle outside of town and the fishing museum are both worth visits, as is the unique ocean "swimming pool".

Barrels of herring ready for shipping.

Drying the sails.

Herring fleet in harbor.

Old Viking castle.

Trinkie natural salt water swimming pool.

The pool fills at high tide the rock warms the water.

View from the cliffs.

Old lifeboat house built by R L Stevenson's family.

Cannon used as signal and fog "horn".

Art on the Malacon.

Another day sail takes us to Cromarty, a tiny community on a large natural harbor.  The harbor is used to build and repair offshore oil platforms.  We picked up one of the free mooring buoys and enjoyed a quiet night.

WWII defenses at entrance to harbor.

The village sits on a spit of land.

The main industry is obvious.