It was critical to catch the tide at the right time to get through the Sound of Hoy. Tides flow at 8 knots here with rip tides and overflows and Tikka’s 18hp engine would be no match here.
I had a message from Tim McKenna yesterday (Tim is cycling around the UK and raising awareness and money for the charity, Mind). It was great to meet up and swap stories of our travels and charities.
I was watching the weather very closely and seeking local knowledge too for the trip back to the Mainland. Yesterday the sea state was rough with Force 7 winds. I am certainly learning the responsibilities of a skipper, particularly the safety and welfare of the crew are not to be taken lightly.
We left at High water to catch the ebb flow through the Sound. The wind had eased but we had to carefully pick our way past large overfalls as we headed to sea. The swell was still considerable but slowly waining. There was no going back now as Tikka is not powerful enough to fight the tide. Typically the wind switched to Southerly to test us further. So it was a long hard beat down to Scrabster.