Spent a week at Loch Fyne with a fellow hovercrafter (Steve). Weather wwas very mixed -everything from flat calm to 50mph+ winds!
Annual Severn Treasure Hunt. Weather was excellent Friday and Saturday with blue skies and no wind, Sunday was a bit rainy but low winds so we made a 54 mile trip to the Clifton Suspension bridge in Bristol.
90 mile cruise on the Humber estuary.
Cruise on the River and North Sea at Berwick
29/5/10 to 6/5/10
Annual Scottish hoverin week at Loch Fyne. 15 craft took part this year (it was a long trip for many!). Had quite a few breakdowns (some fatal) in the first few days but things eventually settled down. Weather was excellent apart from one day of rain. Three craft went on an overnight camping trip (should have been 4 but one broke down at the start). Ended up a very late start - it was dark! The night cruise to the beach was spectacular (see vid on home page). And the overnight beach stop was amazing. Spent many hours on the water all week with no craft problems at all
Took the Prospector down to Berwick as a last check before the Scottish Hoverin in two week. Turned out to be a nice days - temp got to 16C compared to 6C easrlier this weeke!. Cruisied up river then along the coast for a bit. Only real problem was that the new heatshiled that I'd added to the exhaust outlet ddn;t work too well (melted a bit of skirt and split a seam!). Trip video on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gahCzxM30HQ&feature=player_embedded
Took my UH18 up to Loch Fyne ready for the annual Scottish Hoverin at the end of the month. The Loch was flat calm and there was no wind so I couldn't resist a little 40 mile solo cruise! Video clip is HERE The UH18 behaved perfectly - I'd forgotten how smooth a cruiser it is on good water!
Time for the annual Hovercraft training weekend - this time it was held just south of Bristol on school playing fields. It was over-subscribed this year - TEN new craft and owners. The Sunday cruise was held on the Severn and passed off without incident.
Weather has been perfect for hovering for the last few weeks but I haven't had the chance to get out since early January (apart from some field testing). Looked good again today so I set off for Berwick. - it was -4C at 10am this morning but slowly warmed up as I got nearer to the coast (ended up at plus 5 ).
The sand launch ramp had a 2ft high pile of river debris (logs, trees and other vegetation) blocking it so I had to pick through it removing any spiky stuff that was stuck into the sand underneath (guaranteed to rip the skirt). Launched and set off up river - still snow on the ground and the wind chill was a bit severe! Stopped for a cuppa and a warm up on an island and had to remove a couple of layers of clothing eventually as it was very pleasant in the sunshine.
Returned back downriver to the bay and set out around the breakwater/pier. Changed my mind once I saw the waves - there was hardly a breath of wind but the waves were piling up onto the beach so a coastal cruise was out
Travelled back up to Loch Fyne in freezing weather and deep snow - the main roads weren't good at all in places.
Cruised around the Loch for a couple of days. The winter scenery was spectacular but the air temperature was below freezing - there wasn't much standing up in the craft going on!
All of the streams flowing into the Lopch were frozen - you could also walk across the marsh areas as the ground was rock hard! The harbour at Lochgilphead was frozen over (salt water) with night time temperatures dipping to -16C.
A new hovercraft club has set up in the UK specifically to support cruising hovercraft. The web site can be found at http://www.hoverclub.org.uk
Sevtec Scout has been sold
I received a call from David Ryan from Ireland asking if I was interested in selling my Scout. I had no real intention of selling it but his call made me think about it seriously (Matt, the main driver now has a licence to drive a car so his priorities have moved away from hovercraft a bit - fast cars and loose women seem to be the main things nowadays ). We negotiated a fair price and the deal was struck.
I delivered the Scout to the ferry port and Stranrear where I met David and passed it over. I'm sure he will have as much fun as we have had over the last four years!
Barry Palmer ("Mr Sevtec") retired earlier this year - the full range of Sevtec hovercraft plans are now available from Amphibious Marine. They sell kits and parts also but all parts to build a Sev (except Props) can be sourced in the UK and Europe (look at the parts supplier pages for metric equivalnets on this site). Barry's web site is now hosted HEREon the hovercruiser site - it contains a lot of interesting historical and design information on hovercraft (and hang gliding, etc).
Hovercraft visit the Queen!
Had a good days hovering yesterday with Steve starting with a visit to the Queen (the QE2 that is - not the "real" queen ). The QE2 was on it's very last visit to its' "birthplace" (it was built on the Clyde in 1967) and berthed at the Ocean Terminal in Greenock. See 2008 diary and Videos & Pics for full details
The 2008 Scottish Hoverin!
This year the event was held on Loch Fyne in Argyll - a 40 mile long sea Loch famous for oysters, dolphins, basking sharks, spectacular scenery, etc.