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Escape from Essex is not taken trivially by the gods. We sailed from Burnham on Crouch for the Netherlands. Of the 24 hour crossing the first 1/3 is taken up getting free of the sands of the Thames Estuary. Having achieved this one then settles down for a cross channel ride. Our was quite uneventful except for the Coast Guard station at Walton-on-the-Naze asking for any boat actually sighting the Longsand Head buoy to let them know if the light was operational or not. We tried but unfortunately were just out of VHF range and so could not pass on the information that the buoy was doing fine. The buoyage is generally quite good although some of the lights that have been dropped over recent years in the Thames Estuary would provide a benefit if they were reintroduced. Such cases would be the beacons that are on the permanent sand bars and are visible during the day due to their high towers but no longer have lights. We used Imray charts and although we have had problems with these charts for the Netherlands they seem to be quite accurate for what are their home waters.
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