Ardrossan to Gigha via Sanda

We leave Ardrossan and start our adventure

After a final run to Asda and a visit to the fuel dock to top up with 140 litres of diesel we left Ardrossan, our home port for the previous 13 or so years. This was Friday the 2nd June, a couple of days later than our original planned departure date.

Coriander had been prepared and was all ready to go, washed, polished and provisioned.


Gill helmed through the breakwater and out past Caledonian Isles, the ferry across to Brodick.


Our plan on leaving had been to head over to Brodick for the first night and then plan for the next few days. The astute among you will have noticed from the title that we didn’t stick to our plan. The weather was superb and the winds and tides favourable for heading round the Mull of Kintyre.

We were treated to Caledonian Isles and the Isle of Arran ferrys crossing as we headed southwest


We had to tack down to the island of Pladda before we could set course for Sanda, this would prove to be a superb beam reach in 12-14kts of wind. Pretty much ideal sailing.

We had the impressive sight of a tall ship approaching Ailsa Craig,


followed closely by our friends Mike and Clare on Ocean Spirit, returning from their weeks holiday. We called them up over DSC and wished each other all the best. Hopefully we’ll meet up on our travels at some point.

Coriander-7On reaching Sanda, the wind completely died. We had the choice of motoring on with a forecast of no wind, or anchoring for the night at Sanda, with the promise of a good sailing wind the following morning. Given that we were in no hurry we chose to anchor.

We have been sailing around the Firth of Clyde for 13 or so years and had passed Sanda on multiple excursions around the MoK but had never stopped. We realised that we’d missed out on a pretty impressive anchorage over the years.

Coriander-8We had the company of just one other yacht in the calm anchorage and were treated to a fantastic sunset as we enjoyed a nightcap to round off the first day of our adventure.

Coriander-9The following morning we were up a 6am to get the tide round the Mull and pick up the favourable winds to one of our favourite islands, Gigha, where we picked up a visitor mooring in Ardminish bay.

Coriander-10To round off this part of our story, the sunset was again magnificent.

Coriander-11Again, the plan had been to wait for a suitable weather window to head south. Little did we know that the weather window was to be some way off, but that’s for the next post.

Wishing friends and family all the best.