When the weather gets a bit windy, Bonitas mooring in the Swale can seem rather exposed, especially at high tide. The boat does roll about a bit when theres a strong wind over tide. I like to think this doesn't do her much harm so long as the mooring is strong enough. The stresses on the hull and rigging must be less than when shes sailing in a bit of a breeze, and at least the topsides get wet to stop them drying out.
Following this philosophy, I usually keep her afloat till around the middle of November. This year I decided to bring her into the soft and welcoming mud of Faversham creek for the winter just before the second Lockdown, in case visiting her becomes more difficult.
In contrast to the recent storms, we had a crisp dry day with blue skies. John kindly took a day off work to help with the trip. His video here shows the general view of this part of the river at half flood - Bonita is one of the very few boats still on her mooring.
We got up to Ironwharf boatyard under motor running aground - and kedging off- only once. We were able to remove much of the gear and fit the winter covers before it got dark. And so in a few hours Bonita is transformed from a boat afloat ready to set sail at a moments notice to a being laid up for the worst of the winter.
Sadly for all sorts of reasons we have had very little sailing this year with no long distance trips. Even so, its very therapeutic just sitting on the boat when shes afloat, and maybe sailing around for an hour or two. Much of the benefit in owning a boat comes from gentle pottering and thinking about her even without going anywhere much at all. Nevertheless, lets hope for a rather more active season next year