Monday, November 30, 2009
As we left the dark rocks of Portencross...
...we could see the vast bulk of the Bellatrix, a 225m bulk carrier, coming up the Clyde behind us.
It looked like she was heading up the Hunterston Channel between Ayrshire and the Little Cumbrae. We were headed across this channel to the distant isle of Bute beyond.
Rather than cutting straight across, we went well up the channel towards the channel marker buoys. Big ships keep between them, so it is quite safe to sit there and wait until they pass.
It turned out that Bellatrix wanted to go up the main Firth of Clyde channel, on the far side of Little Cumbrae. We realized this when we saw the Navigo emerging from behind Little Cumbrae. The Navigo is a 142m Swedish tanker and she was the first of many ships to make her way down the Clyde that morning. Bellatrix was in for a long wait!
We were not sure if Bellatrix would so patiently wait for us, so we nipped across the channel as quickly as we could!