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September 2022

Solway Yacht Club Cadets Autumn Adventure

by Robert Dinwiddie 30 Oct 2021 10:03 PDT
Solway Yacht Club Cadets Autumn Adventure © Rebecca Davison

During a recent autumnal weekend the Solway Yacht Club Cadets took part in a two day "adventure". This was designed by Willie Patterson, a member of the club's events organising committee.

The "adventure", gave the Cadets training in map reading, experience of high speed travel in rigid inflatable boats (RIBs), supervised marine radio usage and simulated search and rescue operations.

The adventure was entitled "Find JJ" and was based around a fictional test pilot "JJ" whose aircraft had suffered "severe engine failure" while flying over the area of Hestan island and the Almorness peninsula at the mouth of the river Urr as it enters the Solway Firth. At this time he successfully "ejected" but the plane flew on and "crashed" with it's black box in natural woodlands some 500 metres southeast of the Solway Yacht Club pier in Kippford village.

Twenty Cadets in four teams were given map coordinates from which radio signals from the "box" were being received. Each team set off from different parts of Kippford village in search of it. The winning team found it within twenty minutes and retrieved it back to the clubhouse. Thereafter it's weak messages were "downloaded" overnight to give the approximate position of "JJ".

The following day, a large Solway Yacht Club boat was launched into Rough Firth to confirm the approximate position of "JJ" which appeared to be somewhere on Almorness peninsula. Four teams of five Cadets were dispatched in high speed RIBs to obtain the latest coordinates for "JJ" from this boat and then land on various beaches around Almorness in order to locate the "missing" pilot. The information received suggested that he was somewhere near the hilltop of Moyl, a 62 metre hill on the southern edge of Almorness peninsula.

All teams were coordinated by continuous radio contact. After much careful searching "JJ" was found and successfully retrieved to the Solway Yacht Club pier. Overall a great "adventure" weekend was experienced by the twenty 8 to 18 year old Cadets who took part combined with much useful training in land based and seamanship skills. Further such training "adventures" are much anticipated in times to come.

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