Displaying items by tag: Wicklow
Commencing with the Greystones Regatta on 26 May, the schedule also includes events in Arklow (2 June) and Dalkey (9 June), the Stella Maria Regatta in Ringsend on 16 June and the Bray Regatta on 30 June.
July will see two events, the St Patrick's Regatta in Dublin's Docklands on 14 July and St Michael's Regatta off Monkstown and Dun Laoghaire on 28 July, while the Wicklow Regatta will mark the end of 2013's summer events on 5 August.
Locations of the various regattas and suggested viewing points are available HERE.
#SURFING - Ireland can no longer claim to be the surfing world's best kept secret, as the Irish Examiner reports, as thousands of waveriders of all skill levels now flock annually to the west and northwest coasts to sample the swell.
Bundoran is this country's surfing mecca, and for good reason. Recently making National Geographic's list of the world's top 20 surfing towns, the Co Donegal surf capital has spots for everyone from experts to beginners, and boasts a choice of 10 surf schools affiliated with the Irish Surfing Association.
Further down the coast is Sligo, renowned among the surfing elite for the giant rollers off Mullaghmore Head but also a great place for learners, especially at Strandhill and Enniscrone - although "big waves, clean waters and great surfing" are to be found anywhere along the coastline.
Mayo continues the trend, with Bertra in Clew Bay and Keel Strand in Achill standing out, while Clare is home to the famed waves at Lahinch - home turf for big wave surfer Ollie O'Flaherty.
Further along, Kerry and West Cork can boast of a number of top-class surfing destinations, including some stretches just perfect for absolute beginners.
But it doesn't end there, as even the southeast and east coasts can hold their own - as Tramore in Co Waterford and Brittas Bay in Co Wicklow can attest.
#roundireland – While the official tracker has Inis Mor as the overall leader in the 2012 Round Ireland Race, it's going to be a nail biting few hours for the French boat.
As of 3pm, Inis Mor has 30.6 miles to go. To beat Tonnerre she needs to cover that distance in five hours and 34 minutes. Simple math says she needs to average 5.49 knots and as she is making 5.7 knots just south of Lambay Island, it should work for her.
But, the 5.7 knots is not quite in the right direction – because the wind has headed her, she can only make 221° instead of the 190° she needs to reach Wicklow on one tack. So while 5.7 knots looks good, her actual progress towards the finish or VMG, is currently 5.4 knots – just outside the 5.49 knots needed.
To make matters worse, she is entering an area of stronger tides that will be directly against her for the last few hours into Wicklow. She can mitigate some of this by hugging the coast, but at what cost windwise?
Fascinating stuff, www.afloat.ie's money's on Tonnerre, at least in this battle. Keep an eye on Cavatina though – she still has a day left to win!
#RoundIreland– Sole Dutch entry Tonnerre de Breskens skippered by Piet Vroon looked every inch the defending champion when she won the reaching start of a crowded Round Ireland start line in Wicklow this afternoon. SCROLL DOWN FOR MORE PHOTOS BY BOB BATEMAN.
Vroon took six or seven gybes for more breeze before reaching Wicklow head just minutes after the start.
The Dutch yacht , a Ker 46, was followed closely by Laurent Gouy's Ker 39 Inismor and the J133 Spirit of Jacana from Carrickfergus. Also taking the route closest to the shore was Adrian Lee's canting keel Cookson 50 Lee Overlay.
Legendary Irish round the world yacht Green Dragon (the biggest in the fleet) took advantage of the light to medium north westerly winds to hoist a spinnaker and went immediately offshore to clearer air after a congested start of the 2012 Round Ireland Yacht Race start. There was at least one collision at the committee boat end of the line just moments before the gun.
The start of the 2012 Round Ireland. Photo: Bob Bateman
The international 38 boat Round Ireland fleet departed as per schedule at noon, ahead of them up to a week long 700-mile sailing odyssey all the way round the coast of Ireland.
The fleet were tightly packed at Wicklow head on a shy port reach with most setting spinnakers.
Old warhourse and double race winner Cavatina took up her position at the rear of the fleet, settling in for her first night at sea and the first tactical challenge presented at Tuskar rock.
Cork Harbour's Dave Hennessy is getting ready for his seventh Round Ireland race in two weeks time. The two times winner of the 704-mile offshore race in the vintage Granada 38 Cavatina gives some advice on what's involved in a successful circuit of Ireland.
Well we are off again on our seventh Round Ireland Yacht Race, this time with the very grateful sponsorship of CH Marine on board. We were asked for some ideas on tactics for the race, as we have been lucky enough to win it twice in the past.
I think tactics play a small part in this race.The choice of boat would be the first consideration. It is a 704–mile offshore race around Ireland. The boat needs to be able to sail to her handicap over a wide range of conditions over a six day period by night and day. Cavatina is a 1979 design, weighs nine tons, has a long, sharp overhanging bow, a narrow enough stern, and like many heavy displacement boats, can keep moving in light conditions as well as coming into her own in heavy winds. In this year's fleet we seem very much the tortoise among the hares but we have been there before! The overall Fastnet winner in 2005 was a French" tortoise" beating us into second place overall by 22 minutes.
The next 'tactical' issue is crew. We are 12 years campaigning Cavatina offshore and have almost the same crew lining out every year. Our average age would be in late 50s but the group bring a range of skills to the boat – experience, stamina, good humour, sailing ability, mechanical, electrical skills.
The 'good humoured' crew of Cavatina go for their seventh Round Ireland race later this month. Photo: Bob Bateman
We managed to finish the '07 Fastnet where 240 of the 300 entrants were forced to retire.This is fair testimony to the crew's seamanship. I recall a bad night a few years ago approaching Inistrahull off the north coast under spinnaker with a rising gale forecast. We needed to drop the kite, gybe to avoid Scotland, but when we went to ease the halyard we found it had jumped the sheave and jammed solidly in the block at the masthead.
There was no way under the conditions to go up the mast. There was talk of shooting it with a flare even, but it was John Murphy who had the idea to ease the sheets as the boat slid down a wave, causing the kite to rise and the halyard to sit right on the sheave once again.The plan worked, kite came down for a few hours, went up again meaning we reached the fair tide at Rathlin and went on to win that race overall!
Another "tactical" issue to plan for is your sail wardrobe.You need to look at your boat's strengths and weaknesses in order to sail at your best in all conditions. Eric Lisson is shrewd in this regard and saw that the point of sailing from being close hauled to when you can carry a kite on a tight reach was critical for us. With Des McWilliam they came up with a Code Zero which we are only supposed to carry up to 15-knots apparent. This sail has won races for us. We also have a big overlapping furling Genoa.This means we can easily "change gear" when other crews are dragging headsails on deck or putting off marginal calls. Our main is quite small and is only reefed when it really blows.This again is a setup I feel lends itself well to offshore racing.
Cavatina passes along the Wicklow coast at the start of the 2010 Round Ireland. Photo: Bob Bateman
Yet another issue to deal with at the planning stage is food.The crew need to be fed well to sail at their best over that time length. We pre-cook and freeze 6 main meals which are eaten in evening.We cook an FIB (full Irish breakfast) in the morning, usually served in sandwiches. Proper clothing is also essential. Thanks again CH Marine. We finished in Wicklow one year with two crew definitely hypothermic who would have been no good to us if there was another 50 miles in the race!
Probably the most honest thing i can say re on the water tactics is that it is mostly luck.There are 4 tidal gates to negotiate. You sprint to Tuskar to find that gate open or closed. You slog to windward to Fastnet along the south coast, beating into the bays, risking being becalmed, or you take a chance on a long starboard tack to the south to avoid light winds.You push to reach the North Channel between Rathlin and Scotland with the gate open.This is the most critical piece of luck. We made it last year only to be completely becalmed towards Belfast Lough managing 6 miles in 10 hours! We didn't win that race! The final gate is approaching Wicklow itself. Many is the boat has come to a halt in view of the town lights, trying to sail against five knot tides in light night airs.
So if it is really down to luck why do so many do it? Yes it is a challenge heading off south past Wicklow Head into the "unknown" but for me it is the indescribable sense of achievement in "completing the circle". DO IT!
Good luck to crew of Eric Lisson, Ian Hickey, Lennie Donnery, Sean Hanley, Kelly and Dave Hennessy!
#ANGLING - Journalists were angling for a different kind of story at Annamoe Trout Fisheries recently as they competed for the Dublin Crystal Perpetual Trophy, The Irish Times reports.
The eighth annual event at the foothills of the Wicklow Mountains brought together 17 writers from across the Irish media landscape for a friendly test of their angling skills.
John Buckley of Total Flyfisher magazine, who was the first to strike gold at the end of the trout rainbow in last year's event, quickly zoomed ahead of the pack with a total of 21 catches.
And this year's first-timers - which included Brian Cooke of Irish Angler's Digest and celebrity chef Chris Sandford - also set impressive totals.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.
#LIFEBOAT – Wicklow Lifeboat took part in a joint training exercise with an Air Corp helicopter in Wicklow bay on Saturday morning. The Air Corp AW139 helicopter crew landed on the Castle near the lifeboat Station at Wicklow harbour for a briefing prior to the exercise. During the exercise, three of the lifeboat crew were winched into the helicopter using various winch methods.
#SAOIRSE RONAN – Volunteer lifeboat crew with Wicklow RNLI received a surprise visitor during their navigation course this morning (Monday 23 January 2012). Well known actress Saoirse Ronan dropped in to say hello while filming nearby. The actress was filming scenes for director Neil Jordan's new film 'Byzantium' at Wicklow harbour.
The Hollywood actress makes her slipway debut
Tommy Dover, Wicklow RNLI volunteer said, " Saoirse kindly agreed to pose with some of the lifeboat crew from Wicklow RNLI and hear all about the work of the charity. We were delighted to welcome her and if she ever wants to sign up as lifeboat crew, she is more than welcome."
The RNLI is holding their SOS fundraising day this Friday with events happening all around the country. Funds raised are going towards purchasing new lifejackets for the volunteer lifeboat crews. The target is €160,000.
Wicklow RNLI lifeboat crew are no strangers to famous actors visiting the lifeboat station. Both Brendan Gleeson and Don Cheadle called into the lifeboat station while they were filming The Guard nearby.
#MARINE WILDLIFE - They were thought to have disappeared from the east coast in October after delighting wildlife enthusiasts in Dublin and Wicklow.
But concerns that one of the group had died were swept side when the pod of three bottlenose dolphins was once again spotted off Killiney recently.
The Wicklow People reports that the two adults and one juvenile reappeared almost two weeks ago, and have been seen daily "putting on great displays of leaping, breaching, and tail slapping".
Fears were that tragedy had befallen the group when two bottlenoses were seen off Skerries and Balbriggan in late October, and a juvenile was found dead in Portmarnock shortly after.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, some 200 sightings of the dolphins between Dalkey Island and Wicklow town in recent months were validated by the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG).
According to the IWDG, evidence suggests that the pod is now resident off the east coast.
The Wicklow People has more on the story HERE.
#WICKLOW – Wicklow Sailing Club has been stunned by the sudden and tragic death of its former commodore Sean Flood.
Sean's funeral took place yesterday at 11 a.m. in St. Patrick's Church followed by burial afterwards in Rathnew Cemetery.
According to local reports he was last seen on Friday afternoon in the vicinity of Wicklow Harbour. His body was recovered later by divers on Saturday.
Sean, who was in his late fifties, was a prominent Wicklow businessman. He was a long-time member of Wicklow Sailing Club, where he previously held the titles of commodore and vice-commodore.
Flags at the Sailing Club flew at half mast in his honour.
The Wicklow People has more on this sad news here.