Route du Calva

calvados-mapRoute du Calva on Facebook (French and English)

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This is intended for sailing enthusiasts who live in England and would like to come to a gathering in France.

I have devised a project for a cruise along the coast of Normandy south of the Seine. It’s in the “drawing board” stage and called “La Route du Calva”, after the famous apple brandy made in this part of Normandy. My idea is to avoid times of existing gatherings in France and offer something a little closer to home than for those who live in Brittany. This coast is like to be more sheltered than north of the Seine, but still open to NW and NE winds. On the other hand, it is beaches all the way and easier to land without breaking the boat than on our shingles.

Here’s my project on Facebook. Please consider joining the group and giving ideas to get this idea off the ground. Here is a translation of the French introductory message, and English is as official a language for the group as French.

The “Route du Calva” is a project to organize a dinghy cruising gathering on the coast of Normandy (south of the Seine Estuary) from more or less Deauville to the D-Day beaches. A few basic conditions.

A number of dinghies of twelve feet upwards, capable of being propelled by sail and oar, classical lug rigs as well as popular dinghies from the post-war era (1950’s to 80’s) like the Mirror and others, regardless of the material of their construction. No modern racing boats or catamarans. Possibly one boat with an outboard engine for safety, the others with sail and oar. These boats would be equipped for cruising and going within the usual limits for dinghies. Skippers and crew would have a certain level of experience of sailing at sea in moderate conditions, interested in cruising more than racing. These boats would be equipped for camping on-board or on the beach (frowned on in France).

I am thinking of a voyage of three to four days return trip to return to our vehicles and trailers in the same place. Each person would need to be fully responsible legally for himself, his equipment and for third-party liability in the event of an accident. No liability must be able to fall on any other entity. The whole group would be responsible for helping a boat in difficulty – no Zodiac or other motorised escort.

Such a cruise should not coincide with the Route du Sable, the Semaine du Golfe or others. It could be a week in the summer or late summer before the bad weather of autumn. Before organizing anything, I wait for a level of interest and ideas for organization.

I am thinking of this part of Normandy, because the sea is a little more sheltered than north of the Seine, and a boat can safely beach or go into a port. We would pass the D-Day beaches in memory of those who gave their lives for freedom in 1944. Finally, I am open to ideas.

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