More from the Wells – Blakeney row

Here’s some excellent pictures and video of the row from Chris Taylor, including some interesting arial shots showing the structure of Blakeney point that’s not obvious from the ground – please follow the link & take a look:

Chris is a local professional photographer  – more of his work can be seen here:

A hi-res version of the film can be seen here , well worth a look on a large screen.






Wells to Blakeney Row, 19 June

On Tuesday, our 2 skiffs, 1 from Kings Lynn, Victoria in her single Alden, 4 kayaks from BSC, and a Harkers Yard gig from the Marconi Club on the Blackwater, supported by Chris Taylor (photography), Barrie &  Peter in powered craft  rowed from Wells to Blakeney. The route traversed the marsh channels, emerging behind West Sands west of Blakeney point. Rob & Tom M rowed out from Blakeney to meet them opposite Stiffkey, whence everyone made for the Lifeboat station for refreshments before continuing to Blakeney (for more refreshments). Everyone made it in one piece, and the weather, clearing after rain early in the morning, was good, light wind and good sea state. Some initial pictures below – more to come later. Thanks are due to the towers, & everyone who assisted in safety boats, logistics etc. – a most enjoyable day was had by all.  Award for greatest distance travelled goes to Victoria’s brother, visiting from Tiree, where he’s involved in a skiff build, due for launch in August – this was his first row in a St Ayles.

Launching at Wells


Briefing (head east..keep going)



And go!



And stop when you get to the point


where gathers an unaccustomed number of rowing boats



More pictures to come, watch this space.










Osea Island Race, 16 June

Last Saturday saw Rob, Jenny, Adrian & Robin, coxed by Dan, compete in the Osea Island race – rather rough conditions with wind against tide, particularly for Jenny in bow, saw us record a time of 1:35:25, compared to last years 1:28:59. The Stone Sailing Club were as hospitable as ever, giving assistance to launch & recover, with food & drinks available before & after the event. Here’s a track of the race – 7 miles overall, excluding manoeuvring before start & after finish.

Osea Isand

Decent weather at Blakeney

Last thursday saw high tides, bright sunshine and warm but strong winds at Blakeney…

CRAB 19 June kSalt Marshes at High Tide BlakeneyAn

And a nice sunset –

CRAB Sunset after hard row and Fish and Chip supper

Tide caused a slight delay in departure, enabling members to figure out how to fit Rob’s new gadgets to hold footrests in place whilst towing (which do work BTW, but need a little  more development)

CRAB waiting to figure out Rob's engineering and the tide to recede

Meanwhile, back at oar making HQ, 2 new oars have taken shape – one made from an old Collars oar, short at 3.2 metres, intended as a spare that can be more easily carried in the boat, and one, a development of the 4.2 metre lightweight oars, par of the on-going development plan…



These are now with the boats & available for use – all feedback welcome.

Hanse Festival Kings Lynn…

Barry sends photos and words of this highly successful event – and the sun shone too!

“The main opposition was provided by the two King’s Lynn skiffs, but there were two or three local crafts of different kinds in each race. The event is one which has been restarted after many years absence. Its full title is “The King’s Lynn Hanseatic Royal Regatta” and planning will start shortly for next year’s event which, I’m told, will involve a maximum of ten rowing craft.

It’s hoped that more club members will want to participate in racing.”


Discussing tactics before the start…

Discussing tactics..jpg

Setting off to race…

Setting off to race..jpg

What was on offer…

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And we were among the chocolates…

Picking up a trophy..jpg

The team en masse…

image2 (2).jpeg

Fierce competition…



image1 (1).jpeg

Hopefully the first revival of what will again become an annual event.




Will your anchor hold…?

Rosemary sets up an intriguing conundrum:

“Sunday morning last. Security with a stone…”

Anyone fancy having  a go at the maths to establish whether or not this is a safe anchorage?

Were it on the Blakeney mud, I’d lay a wager it would be rock solid.  But as it’s on the sandy Point…?

What do you reckon?


Ancient and Modern…

Rosemary tells of Hoi Larntan’s visit to Woodbridge.

Woodbridge Riverside Trust ( is intending to build a full-size replica of the Sutton Hoo burial ship in a custom-built shed, just over 90ft long. Two St Ayles skiffs will be built first in the shed and CRAB were asked to bring a boat to the opening ceremony on Saturday 21st April. We stayed overnight at a flat overlooking Robertson’s boatyard and the Deben.

Inside the Longshed was a half-size replica of the Sutton Hoo ship, two St Ayles kits and Hoi Larntan. We had a busy 6 hours answering questions and promoting the joys of skiffing.

Woodbridge is tidal with huge banks of peculiarly glutinous mud exposed at low tide. Unlike Blakeney, this mud has to be removed from feet by high-pressure hose or scraping! We launched Hoi Larntan from a slip at the Longshed once we reckoned the tide had risen high enough. Unfortunately we were wrong and made a rather sticky and undignified departure to a pontoon downstream where we took 14 interested potential rowers out, two at a time, for 10 minute spins. The first customer was the Lady Mayor who earlier had opened the Longshed. Despite falling on her back in mid-row (we hope no telephoto lenses were snooping) she resolved to row again once the skiffs are built.

On the Sunday we made an early departure to benefit from the falling tide and headed down-river, calling in at Waldringfield for refreshments, passing Ramsholt  where a surly harbourmaster had refused an earlier CRAB expedition permission to moor (hence the emergency bucket, and beaching at Felixstowe Ferry at the mouth of the Deben for a picnic at slack water after a 10-mile row. Suitably fed and rested we started back up-river on the incoming tide, past the Tide Mill at Woodbridge to the slip at Robertson’s yard in time to enjoy evening reflections on the river. Nine hours on a beautiful river in glorious weather made it a day to remember.

CRAB disembarking for picnic at Felixstowe Ferry.jpg

CRAB Rowing on Deben.jpg

CRAB Showing Off Hoi Larntarn and discussing the making.jpg

CRAB View from mid-stream on the Deben. Ramsholt Church.jpg