Race 13 - Day 4
Crew Diary - Derry-Londonderry, Northern Ireland to Den Helder, Netherlands
21 July

Ellie Fearon
Ellie Fearon
Team Derry~Londonderry~Doire
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Greetings to all from the sometimes sunny, sometimes rainy with the occasional thunderstorms-y North Sea. It has been a busy couple of days.

First we passed the rocky butt of Lewis – popped up from my stint marking new oil rigs on the charts to have a look (well, it would be rude not to!).

After this we encountered the much talked about Pentland Firth. Although it was frustrating at times with low wind and tide against us, it was not the knarly beast I suspect it can be given our charts of this pass are littered with comments starting with words like “dangerous...” and “violent...” (Dan mentioned he had removed the word “extremely” before these phrases so we didn't scare ourselves too much!). Pentland Firth is also near Scapa Flow, a Mecca for exciting wreck dives and definitely on the to do list for when I return to real life post Clipper Race. On this note I am trying to follow Chay Blyth's advice of never finishing one adventure before having the next one in mind. With less than 10 days to go I am frantically scribbling away at my list.

Away from the daydreaming and back to reality, yesterday I performed my final mother duty of the race with my good friend and fellow circumnavigator Ruth. We served the usual breakfast of porridge and cereal, followed by a lunch of coleslaw and enchiladas, which I lovingly cremated for my teammates. All was forgiven when the carrot cake was presented.

Dinner was a nice beef stew followed by Angel Delight and tinned pears. We are eating well this leg and after a stop in Den Helder, where I plan to stuff myself with cheese, I should return to London nice and plump. It was also quite an educational day because Ruth had downloaded several TED talks whilst we in Derry-Londonderry, so we enjoyed those whilst we cooked.

Being mother also meant I slept through the stormy weather and high winds last night. It sounded quite exciting from the comfort of my bed. Mwah ha ha ha!

That's all from me for now. Signing off from my final blog of the Clipper 15-16 Race.

Ellie x

PS A big thanks to Leg 4 crew member Kevin Proudman, who let use his large barn for the sail repair and Code 1 reconstruction during the Derry stopover. The Code 1 has, since the reconstruction, been performing brilliantly, that is until it sustained a small tear last night in a sudden

23 knot gust. It is under repair and will be flying again shortly.