MARLIN trip to North Wales 2014

(Rhyl, Rhos, Llandudno, Puffin I., Red Wharf Bay, Moelfre, Dulas Bay)

I mainly use tides favourably (this helps a lot) and motor at my displacement speed (5 to 7 knots).

Tuesday 5 August: leave Liverpool Marina at 6.50pm and go through Rock Channel to Rhyl. Anchor off Rhyl 10pm. I expected some daylight at that time but a heavy rain shower brought night on prematurely. The waterfront at Rhyl is brightly lit and the harbour access lights (3 red vertical with 1 amber - meaning bridge closed but harbour open if air-draught sufficient) were very prominent.

Wednesday 6 August: enter Rhyl at 6.45, just before HW [Liverpool HW 7.04 7.6m]. The central pontoon in mid-channel (off-shore of the new opening footbridge) was occupied fully by 10 fishing charter boats. I had 3m under my keel there when I tied alongside. There is a landing pontoon on the (shallower?) N bank of the entrance channel (also another one after passing under the bridge). More Rhyl info

Rhyl: Pont y Ddraig from the mid-channel pontoon; landing pontoon; view leaving showing navigation marks and (on shore) harbour lights.

Proceed along the coast, stopping briefly in Llandudno Bay for some time. The wind was offshore. Pass N of Puffin Island and head to Moelfre. Passing Red Wharf Bay there was quite strong offshore wind, although waves were slight.

Llandudno pier and Puffin Island

There was a mooring available at Moelfre so I tied up at 12.05. I later spoke with a fisherman who was using a similar mooring nearby -- he said that the mooring was really only suitable for a smaller boat (than Marlin) but I would be OK for a lunch stop. The mooring chain was not tied to a pick-up buoy but tied to the top-ring with a piece of rope.
Ashore by tender (landing in old Lifeboat slip) for lunch at Ann's Pantry. There was extensive building work underway on a new/refurbished LB station and slipway.

Moelfre: Marlin moored with tender in foreground; work on Lifeboat station; beach

I was interested to explore Dulas Bay, so, after a siesta at Moelfre, I headed there arriving about 4.50pm. There was a stiff offshore breeze (SW 4). The channel into Dulas Bay is shown on the latest charts as a line. The seaward end of this appears to be inaccurate. I surveyed the entrance but did not get in very far at that state of the tide (tide flooding just after half tide). See a 2009 satellite map at low water here.
One reason for my interest is that the Lewis Morris set of charts of 1748 includes a chartlet of Dulas Bay.

I returned past Moelfre to enter Red Wharf Bay at 6.50pm [Liverpool HW 19.51 7.8m]. The entrance is well-buoyed and I anchored off the slips (near the first houses as you enter). I rowed ashore for a meal at the Ship Inn. See previous visit to Red Wharf Bay
The wind dropped overnight and the anchorage was very quiet. So quiet that I was not aware of the boat taking the ground overnight. In the location that I had chosen the outgoing current scours a deeper channel and the banks are quite steep and between 1 and 3 ft high. I was a bit close to the inshore bank -- but no problem.

Red Wharf Bay: Marlin at anchor; Castle Rock from my anchorage. Trwyn Du.

Thursday 7 August: I weighed anchor at 7.10 and left -- the sea-state was slight with little wind. I proceeded to Trwyn Du at 8.20am to survey the channel at the SW corner of Puffin Island (used when cutting along the S side of Puffin Island to enter the Menai Straits).

Then pass slowly eastwards (towing a paravane with a mackerel trace) against the tide past Great Ormes Head to Rhos. I anchored off Rhos at 12.00. The NW wind was light and the sea-state was fairly calm. I rowed ashore, landing at the end of the jetty. After a meal (Cayley Arms), I returned to the jetty, finding that the tide had ebbed leaving mud. After a muddy walk, I got afloat and rowed back to Marlin. Washed the mud off, then another siesta.

Rhos: harbour; harbour with boats aground; jetty showing Marlin anchored in the distance

I left at 3.15pm when the tide would be favourable for returning to Liverpool [Liverpool HW 21.03 8.3m]. I arrived off the marina at 7.40 and locked in to my berth.

If higher resolution versions of the above images are wanted, please contact me. All information given in good faith, but please do not rely on it.

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