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West Country Cruising Companion: A Yachtsman's Pilot and Cruising Guide to Ports and Harbours from Portland Bill to Padstow (Cruising Companions) Hardcover – 2 May 2014
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"Written in a relaxed, easy style, it combines a wealth of pilotage information with historical detail and expert local knowledge. The colour photography, including many invaluable coastal, aerial and approach shots, brings it all vividly to life. Mark looks at planning, tactics and waypoints, and includes his own in-depth appraisals of approaches, harbours and anchorages from Bridport to Padstow, including the Isles of Scilly. This first-class tome will be essential reading for anyone heading west, under sail or power. It will also add hugely to your enjoyment of this fascinating cruising ground." (Yachting Monthly, Jun 2014) 'For those familiar with this classic pilot book its qualities have grown with each successive edition and this 8th edition is no exception. Comprehensive, simple to navigate, beautifully illustrated and bursting with useful information. Port plans are detailed and crisp, their utility enhanced by approach and aerial photographs. Everything is here to plan a cruise and stay safe in this sometimes unforgiving area on the edge of the Atlantic. I can find no fault with this volume and would find it inexplicable if other than a local skipper undertook any significant West Country cruise without one on board.' (Paul Fletcher-Tomenius, Cruising Association); 'The latest edition of West Country Cruising Companion continues the valuable role of being both an excellent pilot guide to some of the very finest cruising grounds around our coast and also providing that local knowledge of the many attractions ashore, the pubs and restaurants that make this such a wonderful place to sail. Mark Fishwick's encyclopaedic knowledge of the area will find favour to those new to the West Country and also those already familiar with its charms. It should find a place on any boat bound for the south west.' (Little Ship Club). 'This eighth edition of the West Country Cruising Companion has clearly been a labour of love accumulated over the last 25 years and what a gem it is. It is a must for all those cruising the south coast between Portland Bill and Padstow, whether experienced or not. There are many fascinating little places covered in great detail, which I've missed in the past, but now do not intend to in the future. The coverage of the Isles of Scilly is excellent and easy to follow.' (Royal Cruising Club)
About the Author
Born in Exeter and bought up on the River Exe, Mark Fishwick began sailing at an early age and soon ventured further to explore the rivers, creeks and harbours of the West country in his parent's 18ft 6 in Alacrity sloop vallette. He moved to Cornwall in 1973 soon after buying his present boat, the 34ft 1910 gaff yawl Temptress, and since then has enjoyed a varied nautical life encompassing commercial fishing, charter skippering in the West Indies, yacht delivery, boatyard work, writing, photography and just occasionally sailing for fun! He has now returned to his roots and lives within sight of the River Exe, close to Lympstone.
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Also like the way the author gives approximate costs for marinas, moorings and river anchorages along the way.
Downside is that there isn't much written about suitable anchorages and holding along the way. It does tend to leap from port to port with nothing much in between. Having sailed on the west coast of Scotland for the last 15 years, and having used Martin Lawrence's pilotage books, I am used to having EVERY bay and anchorage written about in detail, knowing that wherever I'm sailing I can find information about the shoreline all around me.
That said, we have sailed from Scotland down to the Solent and used this book all the way round the coast that it was written for and it was perfectly fit for purpose.
A fantastic guide to sailing in the West Country, a great planning resource, beautifully illustrated and presented , but best of all it is a good read, with plenty for sailor or anybody who loves the West Coast
Oh, and you were right about the uncharted rocks in the Isles of Scilly, we found one in Old Grimsby Sound!
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