We had been monitoring the weather forecasts and it looked as if there were going to be strong winds over the weekend. Tom received an email from the Kentish Sail Association, firstly warning of the possibility that the Swale Barge Match could be cancelled and then another confirming that there would be no match this year. We decided the safest thing was for us to head back upriver, to make sure that we were well inland before the really strong winds arrived. We were able to sail out from our anchorage at Harty Ferry to the end of Sheppey.
We then turned north, but decided we had better motor into the wind to make sure we made use of the tide to get us back to Gravesend, where we planned to anchor for the night. Tom managed to sail a bit further, but then chose to motor around the Montgomery and across the Medway shipping channel.
We had an uneventful trip to Gravesend, but had a bit of trouble finding the right spot to anchor. By the time Steve had lowered the anchor for the third time I felt we had better stay where we were rather than risk a mutiny. In contrast to the trip down we had a restless night and both Tom and I were up in the night checking that we weren’t dragging. In spite of this Tom still had to be up early and left before us to make sure that he made it back to South Dock at a time that he was able to lock in.