In the grand scheme of things, Papillon is a little thing, only 19' and light with it, and she gets to be a real handful in the force 5 bracket..
..and thus despite a fairly major reef on the main, it meant there was still too much sail up on a day that Chimet confirms was a solid force 5 gusting 6, and hence the early return to the mooring... a great shame as it was a lovely day.
So - the forecast was proved wrong (it was supposed to die off later in the afternoon) but on the other hand, one I took the right decision to go back, two I made the right decision to reef before leaving (it could have been a lot worse), three I got to wear my new Henry Lloyd waterproof (that my mum and sister bought me for a "significant" birthday earlier this year) as the spray was flying on the return back to the mooring (wind against tide), and last, although the track records only 5.8 knots, I saw a 6.2 for a very brief moment - OK it may have been tide assisted, but Papillon was flying!!
Not a great loss though - a relaxing beer in the cockpit, with a cigar and a good book, and some decent sounds from the stereo, while idly watching the lads and lasses from HYSTS having fun on their Toppers certainly eased the stresses of the week!
I'm still planning my first big trip on Papillon - the weather is conspiring against me though... on my radar is the Isle of Wight, but we need less wind to make it a possible - if I can though, I'm thinking about a day off from work this week - fingers crossed...
Distance: 5.03 miles (cumulative score just over there to the left)
Wind: Force 5 gusting force 6.