GOLDEN EYE wintered 2015-2016 at the van Swaay yard in Bruinisse, Netherlands, south of Rotterdam.

We plan to depart on about May 18, bound for Brittany. This will entail about 300 miles against the prevailing westerlies, on a schedule determined by the substantial tidal currents and notorious weather of the North Sea and English Channel. We hope to make progress west as fast as possible as the North Sea and Channel ports of Belgium and France west of Cherbourg are not inviting. The Channel Islands, however, are enticing as are St. Malo (with a visit to Mont St. Michel) and other ports on the north coast of Brittany. Tides along this coast reach 12 meters (40 feet) at springs with comparable currents. Harbors are there mostly tide-limited and involve a marina behind a sill, which traps water (and boats) at high tide so that boats inside float well above sea level when the tide drops.

We hope to round the corner of Finisterre before the end of June, possibly with a stop at the island of Ouessant.

We plan as much time as possible on the Biscay coast of Brittany, south as far as the Gulf of Morbihan with stops at Bénodet, La Trinité and Vannes. Bob Godshalk, Vicki McGrath, Britt Godshalk, Victor Lopez and Soleil Godshalk-Lopez will likely join us for parts of that cruise.

About July 14, we plan to head north and east again, stopping at some of the ports missed on the westbound route and possibly returning to the van Swaay yard by August 8.