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post #1 of 5 Old 09-12-2008 Thread Starter
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English channel

Has anyone on this forum sailed through the English channel?
I'd like to know which side is safer French or English coast as far as staying clear of commercial traffic.
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post #2 of 5 Old 09-12-2008
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I've sailed the English Channel, but don't know that I can say that one side is safer than the other... That said, we sailed down the English Coast.

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post #3 of 5 Old 09-13-2008
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Whichever side you sail keep well clear of the central shipping lanes regardless of whether there is a TSS in that area or not. Essentially that means, sail fairly close in to one side or the other* - cross over only as if you were a pedestrian on a major highway. In my experience there's not much to choose between the two sides regarding other traffic, though the English side is a little easier in terms of tides.

This is specially true at the eastern end, the Dover Straight. You will never believe the amount of traffic not only going through but also channel ferries crossing. That having been said, I used to cross over from my home port of Dover to France at least half a dozen times each year, and can't remember a serious incident involving a yacht for many years until the loss of the Ouzo in 2006 (see http://www.maib.gov.uk/publications/...2007/ouzo.cfm).

*For some reason the majority of ships hug the outside margin of TSS's, while just outside there can be coastal traffic going the other way.

Last edited by LynW; 09-13-2008 at 01:50 AM.
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post #4 of 5 Old 09-15-2008 Thread Starter
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Hi, I am going to time it for daytime travel, seems to be a LOT of traffic through a narrow passage I have been told.

I should have included this in my initial post, any recomendations on Marinas in Spain, France, Belgium, Germany, Poland and Sweden that are friendly and offer more than just a place to tie up. As in haul out and repair capabilities?
I have looked on marina map dot com I think not enough info is provided to help me decide. I have to stop in Hamburg for a Month, so def need a nice place there.
see ya,

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post #5 of 5 Old 09-15-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slowboattochina View Post
Hi, I am going to time it for daytime travel, seems to be a LOT of traffic through a narrow passage I have been told.
I crossed it back and forth for the first time in June, and my wife in May. Neither time was traffic much of an issue. The Channel is wider than it looks, and on the daytime crossing in calm weather I don't believe we changed course once to avoid shipping. On the rougher night passage back, we did tack once to avoid as series of four ships crossing ahead of us, but it was no big deal. In fact, it made the evening more interesting.

Jim H
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