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Boating in the Lough Derg

  • #1
    Registered Users Posts: 11 ✭✭✭ simbav


    Hello, I have been boating now for less than one year, mostly in Lough Derg. Last Friday, we went from Scariff harbour to Williamstown Harbour (Druumman ). We spent a night there. In the evening, I got some news that tomorrow will have strong winds. Next day, I tried to go back to Scariff but it is too windy and the waves were very big and rough to the side of the boat. So I went back to the harbour after five minutes :D . We made a decision to stay for another night. I checked the weather forecast and showed that the next day, the winds were still coming but a tiny bit less stronger, but up to 56 kmph gusts. The wind was blowing from Scariff harbour. So I thought it was a good idea to go to Scariff. So we left the harbour at 11 o'clock in the morning. At the start, it looked not so bad but after 30 min in the middle lake, we get f**ked by the waves. The waves were so sharp, some very deep and high. All the time I was steering and controlling the throttle to keep the boat straight and lowering impact bang. It was the worst of 1.5 hours of my life :D . My wife starts crying when we reach the harbour. My son got a seasickness. I don't want to repeat that ever again. My question is how high risk was it to flip over and sink? Or maybe it's normal in the boating life, and there was no to little risk at all. :D My boat is a Seamaster 813. Thanks


Comments



  • The thumping and banging of waves can sound and feel a lot worse than they are and for your wife and son who may not of experienced it before it can be terrifying.You were probably not at risk of sinking as you have quite a high freeboard and are mostly inclosed but never take the lake or weather for granted it can bite you believe me I know :(

    I think you will have to treat your wife and son to a nice day out on a very calm day to gain their trust back :)



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  • Lough Derg and that area you were in can produce dangerously short steep waves that could swamp or roll quite a sizeable boat especially if you're inexperienced at handling such waves. In some situations Lough Derg can produce waves you won't get at sea as they can be extremely close together. You did the right thing watching the weather in advance but you have to be prepared to either go home before bad weather arrives or have the option to wait it out or leave the boat moored safely and get the bus home and come back to collect the boat later.

    Trying to make passage under pressure is when mistakes happen, build your experience very conservatively.

    The good news is you got away with it and now have some idea of what the boat can handle along with what the family's tolerance too. Make sure you use the sea area forecast and don't depend on the more general forecast. Get it online or on the VHF.

    Keep the VHF on 16 as much as possible even when you're not under way as you'll get weather warnings between scheduled forecasts if the weather is changing fast.




  • Agree with previous comments.
    Maybe better to go up the river above Portumna for your next trip.
    There is more shelter and some very nice scenery.




  • simbav wrote: »
    I checked the weather forecast and showed that the next day, the winds were still coming but a tiny bit less stronger, but up to 56 kmph gusts.

    Captain; your boat, your responsibility. ;)

    We've all been there, in a rush to get to another harbour or to go home but the lakes are wide and long and your boat is small. It's a valuable lesson to learn.

    Don't be afraid to ask other boat's crew for their advice before you leave the harbour if you are unsure. Listen to the coastguard weather reports on your vhf. Your wife is scared because she doesn't understand what's going on and it's all very frightening. Keep her updated on your thinking, your plans to make it better and get her input if it's just a better idea to (safely) turn round and go back.

    Happy wife, happy (boating) life!




  • Even my Bayliner 2855 used to take a battering on Lough Derg.
    Could never understand how relatively flat bottomed hire boats held up.


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  • antietam1 wrote: »
    Even my Bayliner 2855 used to take a battering on Lough Derg.
    Could never understand how relatively flat bottomed hire boats held up.

    The first time I did the Shannon, on an Emerald Star Caprice, we got an absolute battering heading south through Lough Ree.

    Fairly big rolling waves that day.. she battered on through it, but it was not comfortable for most on board!!

    2766997195_ec25e25063_b.jpg


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