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groova

Best Route To Sea

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Hello All,

We have recently bought ourselves a boat that is at Brundall and our shortly looking to leave the Broads (sorry!) and head out to sea to travel south to Harwich area and then on to our new home at Ramsgate marina.

Whilst I have my own thoughts about the best route to take to get out to sea, being not familiar with the area I would be interested in forum members views and experiences on the best strategy.

  • Great Yarmouth or Lowestoft?
  • Best state of tide?
  • Best overnight staging point near Breydon Water?
  • Issues with bridges?

Many thanks in advance for your help!

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via Great Yarmouth you have breydon Bridge and Haven bridge to pass, Haven bridge requires 24 hour prior booking (if it is working)

via lowestoft (Oulton Broad) you have the lock, and a bridge that would require booking (I believe).

best to keep an eye on here as generally if there are problems with the bridges or lock, then someone will copy the broads Authority notification to a post on the forum.

I am not sure of your level of expertise with navigation and other sea voyages, but I am sure others will be along to explain what you might need to prepare for the journey.

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Yarmouth is easy enough as long as you book bridge lifts at least the day before, if you head out shortly after the tide starts building you should get an extra shove down towards harwich, shotley is a good place to stop over as there is all tide access via the lock, The rose in the village is a good friendly pub.

On the way out through yarmouth make sure you call in by the lifeboat shed for clearance or they get upset.

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5 minutes ago, Smoggy said:

Yarmouth is easy enough as long as you book bridge lifts at least the day before, if you head out shortly after the tide starts building you should get an extra shove down towards harwich, shotley is a good place to stop over as there is all tide access via the lock, The rose in the village is a good friendly pub.

On the way out through yarmouth make sure you call in by the lifeboat shed for clearance or they get upset.

That's call Yarmouth Port for clearance at or before the lifeboat shed..

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The Authorities at Yarmouth can be less than helpful, witness the saga of Robin and Independence.  Personally, as Groova is going South, I'd exit the Broads via Lowestoft. Less agro for one thing, less sea time for another. Lowestoft is geared up for leisure boating, Yarmouth is not. Spend the night at Lowestoft before an early start for Ramsgate, simple!

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well we know from Indys trip that Dover to Yarmouth is do-able in a day (weather permitting) the boat type may (or may not) make a difference to the viability of the trip

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Waiting around for the lock and bridges at lowestoft is more of a pain I recon plus it costs you for the lock, I've never had an issue at yarmouth and I would hope the indy thing has made them a bit better, assuming a well powered boat it's a lot quicker to run down the outside than it is poodling down the new cut towards oulton broad and if breydon is clear you can nip across there pretty quickly too.

If you are not local to the area a stopover at southwold is well worth it but check with the harbour master first as the entrance may have changed a bit with the beast from the east, the last few years has been ok at all tides as long as you approach at 310-320 degrees (T).

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Plus points for leaving at Yarmouth is straight forward ease - one river down from Brundall, over Breydon and you are there. Going out at Lowestoft means you need to head down the New Cut and take more river miles to Mutford Lock you also have to think about what time to arrive to for the Bascule bridge in Lowestoft has timed lifts.

So, if it was myself I would go from Yarmouth. I would give http://www.eastportuk.co.uk/bridge-lifts.aspx Peel Ports - plenty of advanced notice as to the bridge lifts (should you need them) for Breydon Road Bridge and Haven Bridge. You will also need to get through Reedham and not only myself but others have found VHF calls to Reedham bridge being met with silence, that said if it is closed and the LED notice is saying 'request to open' I would still call them over the radio (Ch12) but be prepared to moor at the waiting pontoon which in your case will be almost opposite Reedham Quay or hold station waiting for the bridge to swing.

You asked about the state of tide to best use. I would think more about what sort of time you will be leaving Yarmouth Harbour and what the state of tide is doing at sea as if you can get some assistance there this will help your fuel economy and passage time a great deal. If your boat is capable to make the passage to Ramsgate I suspect she will have some grunt and as the speed limit on the Yare is 6MPH even if you were pushing a flood tide you would not notice that as much so what the rivers are doing would not be something I would be looking at more what my passage plan and tidal streams were once at sea and using them to my advantage if possible.

As for a good place to moor Berney Arms Reach - the BA 24hr moorings along there are well made up and you cant get much closer to Breydon.

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Plenty of sensible advice above and much depends on the size/type of the boat and your skill set.

However, having planned and costed the trip by sea, it might be worth comparing the option of road transport in terms of cost, timings and ease.

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4 minutes ago, johnm said:

Plenty of sensible advice above and much depends on the size/type of the boat and your skill set.

However, having planned and costed the trip by sea, it might be worth comparing the option of road transport in terms of cost, timings and ease.

You could also hire a qualified skipper to take it for/with you, even if your skills are OK; two qualified persons on board are better than one.

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If it were me, if I were being asked to take Groover's new boat to Ramsgate, I would have the engines and fuel tanks checked. Problem with buying is that some boats have had little recent use, the owners perhaps realising that boats are not their thing and in some cases boats have sat at the broker's moorings for some quite considerable time before being sold, sometimes well over a year..

Ramsgate is doable in a day but I'd take an early departure thus a comfortable overnight stop at the RNSYC before my journey would be high on my list of priorities. .

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We normally go out to sea via Great Yarmouth and have also gone out at Lowestoft. If your first stop over is on the Orwell then Shotley Marine or Woolverstone are both OK. To take advantage of the flood tide I would consider leaving Yarmouth at about half flood, then you would have the tide behind you all the way. If leaving Yarmouth turn south out of the harbour and keep close in all the way down to the twin buoys at Lowestoft then turn out to sea via The Stanford Channel. Once clear of the Lowestoft approaches head down the coast.. There are no real problems but watch out for Crab pots and nets from Southwold onwards. Keep in fifty feet plus of water when going past Dunwich and Aldeburgh (Just over a mile off) to avoid the nets and pots. Watch out for the nets and pots off The Deben area. If you have time call in at Southwold, there are good overnight moorings there on both sides

of the river (call southwold on C12) Dave R - 

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There is plenty of sensible advice here but I would every time go from Lowestoft.

GY is good if going North but Lowestoft is better if going South. Both have Two obstacles to pass so neither is better on that point just that Lowestoft is One hour less to traval at sea.

Perhaps the most important thing to consider is not river flow but sea tidal current. Prior to moving to Shotley we were moored at Brundall for 8 years and have done this passage on numerous occasions. 9 times out of 10 we departed from Lowestoft and always tried to get the tidal push.

groova asked for advice on best strategy so I chuck in my pennies worth. 

First decide on the ideal date to travel  then check the time of HW lowestoft. Deduct 4 hours ( HW -4 ) that is the time the South going stream will commence off Lowestoft.

If you are only going as far as the Harwich area a good easy place to enter and stay is Shotley Marina.

I'm not sure of the speed of your boat but assuming 10 kts its going to take you 4 hours + to get to Harwich. That is OK because the North going stream does not start until HW Harwich which will be 6 hours after the best time to leave Lowestoft.

The following day Harwich to Ramsgate is also quite straight forward either via the outer or inner routes. If going inner then perhaps a call into Chatham for a night and then along the coast to Ramsgate. If using an out side the sand banks route then straight to Ramsgate would not be a problem.

Depending on the time of day when leaving Lowestoft then perhaps a night at Oulton broad yacht station is a good place to stay. The lock can be booked the day before and the staff will help you decide on the best time to go through which will co-inside with the opening time of both the rail and road bridges. 

If you do not want the hassle on the day of departure then stay at the RN&S YC or Haven Marina both are on the sea side or all the bridges and you can depart from them at any time.

Hope this is of some assistance.

Dave.

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If not familiar with the thames estuary get the book "crossing the thames estuary", it's aimed at raggies up to 7 knots but full of good info none the less.

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Beat me to it Smoggy - another useful read is "the east coast pilot". Not sure of the etiquette about recommending other fora but the east coast section of  YBW.com has lots of good gen.

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Hello all,

Thanks so much for all your varied replies and I've only now had a chance to sit down and reply properly. I'll try and expand on / answer the various points raised where I can.

I probably should have said at the outset that this is not a delivery trip per se but a holiday as well whilst we travel. So whilst Ramsgate is doable in one hit, we would prefer to take our time. Weather is a most important consideration and with our move planned for the first week in April, the long range forecast for that week has improved a lot but still features winds stronger than we wish to venture out into.

CB18 - The boat is capable of cruising at 20-25 knots and Jenny Morgan it had a full engine and sterndrive service in November prior to being winterised with a full tank of fuel. You are so right about some boats sitting around for a year or so at the brokers.

I asked about tides in case there was a better time to approach Great Yarmouth than others. As you've all said, tide direction out at sea is a more important consideration than on the Broads so that's good to know.

I personally prefer the idea of Great Yarmouth and London Rascal has pointed out that at Berney Arms Reach there are Broads Authority moorings (I had assumed they were pub owned) - is there shore power up there as well?  

I had anticipated a night to start with at Reedham and then some high speed runs over Breydon Water the following day to ensure all was well in the engine room and then an exit via GY the day after that.  Another factor playing on my mind is that if something did start to go wrong out at sea, Lowestoft is not that far away.

However, Mrs Groova now likes the idea of a Lowestoft exit that some of you are plugging, especially if the weather is not brilliant, and allows us to reach the RN & S YC marina as several of you have mentioned. An escape to sea when the weather is good is then very easy, assuming they have space and a reasonable mooring booking system. 

Thank you Smoggy and Stumpy, we have those books and they are both brilliant once you have left the Broads. They've helped greatly with the planning to get to Shotley or Wolverstone. DaveR thanks for your comments regarding the route to Harwich.  CB18 thanks for your comments regarding the whole route to Ramsgate - we're considering an inshore route along the North Kent coast as its good to keep sight of land if possible.

So I will continue to monitor the weather closely and set our route accordingly, somewhat more wiser thanks to all your comments above.

So much to think about!

 

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If the trip is a holiday as well then consider stopping off at Southwold for a day or two. Great Yarmouth to Southwold takes about 1.5 hours and Lowestoft to Southwold takes just under the hour.You could contact the harbour master at Southwold and he would reserve a mooring for you. Re the Berney arms moorings there are no electric hook ups there at present. One disadvantage of going out at Great Yarmouth is that if the sea conditions are not right then you would have to return and moor at the town Hall Quay moorings which are not good and you could be stuck there for 24 hours before you could get back onto the broads. As has been said if you exit via Lowestoft then you could moor at the r.n and Suffolk marina the seaward side of the lift bridge until conditions improve for your continued passage to the south.

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would go with CB18, all the way but , via Braydon , some flat out blasts before sea is priceless, test the lumps and system,s 

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Six of one and half a dozen of t'other I reckon.  I've done both on a few occasions now, had problems at both of them too but only once at each location.  RNSYC is a really good overnight stop with all facilities

Griff

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Groova - if you do pop into Woolverstone  have a bimble up to the Red Lion in Chelmondiston, good food a cut above pub grub and a cracking pint of Adams. 

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At 20 knots if you don't like the conditions out of yarmouth lowestoft is still only half hour away and you won't know the sea state properly till you get out into the deeper channels (don't hug the coast yarmouth to lowestoft especially after recent storms, your charts will be useless) as it's always choppy in the entrance.

Moorings wise burgh castle has an electric post and isn't that much further away from breydon and you can walk to the fishermans if you fancy an early night or up to the kings head if you like a proper pub.

For making a holiday of it southwold is a must and woodbridge is  very nice although it does add a bit of time, the deben is much prettier than most of the broads (am I allowed to say that here?) .

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Hypothetically the hundred stream through somerton and if this easterly carries on long enough the sea and broads may well meet again here in my lifetime, I see reports of more sand cliff being taken from Hemsby this afternoon.

Joking aside I think rnsyc would sway me to take the longer inland passage and make another day of it, I’ve only been out of Yarmouth on dybles fishing trip boat but Lowestoft on the combing of brown boats and the bar is nearer when you get back to the quay at rnsyc!

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On ‎17‎/‎03‎/‎2018 at 11:32, Smoggy said:

At 20 knots if you don't like the conditions out of yarmouth lowestoft is still only half hour away and you won't know the sea state properly till you get out into the deeper channels (don't hug the coast yarmouth to lowestoft especially after recent storms, your charts will be useless) as it's always choppy in the entrance.

Moorings wise burgh castle has an electric post and isn't that much further away from breydon and you can walk to the fishermans if you fancy an early night or up to the kings head if you like a proper pub.

For making a holiday of it southwold is a must and woodbridge is  very nice although it does add a bit of time, the deben is much prettier than most of the broads (am I allowed to say that here?) .

I thought I'd read that Burgh Castle dries out at low water? Our draft is circa 3' 2".

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It can on big springs but most of the time it's ok, I've been aground there but only the once, I need about the same as you, it's my normal jump off point for an early yarmouth exit.

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