Round the Isle of Wight in a Wayfarer Dinghy

We, that is myself, my wife Lydia, and son David, set off to sail round the Isle-of-Wight in our Wayfarer, Salsa, sail number 8684, at 05:45 on Saturday, 14th July 2001. This is a passage of some 55-60 miles and is nearly 10 times the distance any of us had sailed before in a dinghy. However, the beginning of this adventure was much earlier.

The Wayfarer Association organises a cruise around the Isle of Wight each year. It had been one of my ambitions to undertake this cruise, especially since the sailing club we are members of, Hill Head Sailing Club, lies on the Solent - the body of water between the south of England and the Isle-of-Wight. When we set out we had been sailing for about the last 6 years, and we had owned a Wayfarer for 3 years.

This article is in three parts:

  • This introduction.
  • Preparations for the passage.
  • A description of the passage itself.

In 2002 I also took part in the Isle-of-Wight cruise, this time going the other way round. The article I wrote for Mainsheets, the Hill Head Sailing Club magazine is reproduced in “Around the other way”.

Matthew West
W8684 Salsa