The Ore & the Alde
The descriptions for entering the Ore had always seemed a little daunting, but in August I summoned up enough courage to visit. Of course conditions had to be right, this year there had seemed to a lot of on-shore winds so a visit had been put off. One difficultly of timing a visit from the Orwell is that to arrive at the Ore bar at good time to cross the bar (2hrs before high water) you have to go against the ebb from Felixstowe so first visit timing is tricky
As it turned out, with a good wind I arrived at the Orford Haven clearwater buoy at just about the perfect time so headed in for the bar under sail and conditions were good. Still it was a bit nerve wracking for a first time entrance as the channel is quite narrow and it didn’t help that a faster boat was on my tail and shouting at me that they couldn’t slow down. (Well they could have I thought if they had hauled in their main a little or even scandalised it). Still they managed to pass safely enough. Thereafter it was more straightforward
I took the channel around the back of Havergate island where I dropped the hook in Long Gull. Lots of birds here as Havergate Island is a bird sanctuary
Next day I proceeded up the river past Oreford and further where the river changes it’s name to the Alde up to Aldborough threading my way through the rows of moorings here and then to arrive at Cob island to anchor again a very peaceful spot.
In the morning I reversed my course down the river next day and anchored just short of Flybury point to wait the tide.
I left here 2 hrs before high water which meant I had to buck the incoming tide but its is recommended that it is foolish to leave on the ebb and besides the tide is not really strong until you get to the bar. Here is was strong lots of ripples & eddies and you pass so close to the beach on side and the sand banks on the other , there is a side entrance as it were where the tide rushes in at you and even with engine progress is slow so it kind of prolongs the agony and suspense. It was quite a relief to pass the buoys and head out for the clearwater buoy. There I could relax and have a very pleasant sail back down the coast to rejoin the Orwell and so back to my mooring.