Thursday 29/04/10 Meelick - Portumna Castle Harbour - Garrykennedy
Length of boat trip: 4 hours 49 minutes
Motto of the day: Back on Lough Derg
It's nearly windless but cloudy in the morning. A goldfinch, robin & co are twittering as if in a competition. We lock down and drift to Portumna. The annual angling competition of British anglers is again busy. We moor at Portumna Castle Harbour. A group of girls with two double-canoes of Birr Outdoor Education Centre arrive. Girl after girl jumps into the cold water. One is frightened but the other girls encourage her and so she takes heart and jumps too.
Some sunny spells arrive and with them also some wind when we head for Garrykennedy. Benjamin rock is today without a black top marker and looks better without it.
There some showers and I wish upon a group of east European anglers really heavy showers because of their outrageous angling methods. They know that this is not right and look nervously again and yet again to the entrance where a woman with a kid is an alarm post for them. Finally they leave with a lot of small fish including a baby pike. I'm very happy that they haven't caught a big pike!
The weather sends us a rainbow very close to us, that kind of close by rainbows I have only seen in Ireland.
Friday 30/04/10 Garrykennedy - Mountshannon
Length of boat trip: less than one hour
Motto of the day: The weekend starts with April weather
The last day in April dawns and shows us the whole range of April weather. On our way to Mountshannon heavy showers pour down. Half an hour later a blue sky is reflecting on the surface of Lough Derg. I know you can drive from Garrykennedy to Mountshannon in nearly 20 minutes but we go slowly, that's doddling!
The jetties at Mountshannon are initially empty but during the afternoon boat after boat arrive. It's a Bank holiday weekend and also boats of the Lough Derg branch are meeting here for a CIC (Cruising in company) that we also take part in. 'Ocean Froggie' appears between the islands and comes in for a short visit. Noel comes over for a coffee.
When leaving he meets 'Kobold'. We chance the mooring and Brian and Robert come on board for a chat. The night is clear starlit and calm when we go to sleep. 'Tanjuan' arrives later but we hear nothing of that.
Saturday 01/05/10 Mountshannon - Noodling on Lough Derg
Length of boat trip: 3 hours 47 minutes with Tanjuan
Motto of the day: Noodling
Today 'noodling' is scheduled. The sky is cloudy in the morning and the clouds creep up the mountains. A sailing regatta starts.
Our companions of the CIC awake slowly and our flybridge gets more and more visitors. Our table on the flybridge squeaks. No longer, after Derry brings WD 40 and some strong men lift the table. Clare and Wendy prepare a brunch and I make fresh filtered German coffee. The salon of the Silver Spray proves big enough to accommodate all the hungry people. Thereafter we meet on 'Tanjuan' for noodling. We explore several bays to find suitable places for mooring bouys which are intended to be placed by the Lough Derg branch.
My personal favourite spot today is ... the last place we explored before getting diesel at Williamstown. Angus complains about the rain. Wendy is looking towards Mountshannon where the sun is shining.
Back at Mountshannon sun and milk is waiting for us thanks to a nice German crew on 'Cornflower' who have bought it for us in the shop.
'Chang Sha', the old Gentlemen yacht , sends us a bit of turf smell and we have a great evening on her with many jokes and laughter.