Yesterday and Friday, Angus and I brought Raasay back to Findhorn. Tide times made this a two day job, as we picked up an outgoing tide at Lossiemouth and the next high tide was going to be after dark.
We over-nighted on a visitors' mooring in Cromarty, after a short visit to the visitors' pontoon berth in Cromarty Harbour. That was an interesting test - there is rarely room on the Cromarty pontoon as the visitors' berth is frequently occupied. Raasay draws 1.8m, and we now know that as long as we have 0.9 m over chart datum we can (just) float tied up to it. Even low water is often not below that.
We can only get about 2/3rds of the boat on the pontoon, mind you:
On Saturday morning we headed for Findhorn, motoring in flat calm, and picked up the mooring at 11am. This was about an hour before high water, and the tide was flowing strongly inwards. I'd forgotten that D section is not sheltered from this when the sandbanks south of it are well immersed.
Picking up a heavy mooring in 2knts of tidal stream, eddying and swirling, was an interesting learning experience, and involved a sheet winch on a nylon cable to pull the strop through the bow roller.
It's much more peaceful on the outgoing tide, and once the sandbanks give shelter everything goes very quiet indeed. I'll just need to time things carefully when I'm on my own.
I also thought that I could take the nylon cable from the winch, through the bow-roller, and back to the cockpit. Then I could pick up the mooring from there and just winch it through.