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There is an active cruiser section.  Sailing is possible in the river for six hours over the high tide. Many of the cruisers are twin keeled, there are some catamarans.  In summer boats are moored in the river, most moorings drying out at low tide.  In winter the club boat park offers space, with electricity and water available, to members only with booking and pre-paying.

The day cruising grounds are mainly in the bay with Clovelly, Lundy and Ilfracombe within a day sailing to return at the next high tide.

Further afield there are many possibilities in the Bristol Channel.  The Welsh coast offers refuge at Milford Haven, Tenby, Swansea, Cardiff as well as many smaller places in between.  The English coast includes Bristol, Portishead, to the east, Padstow, St Ives and the Scillys Islands to the west, but the alternative anchorages are fewer. Ports from Padstow, Milford to Cardiff are within an easy days sail.  The Bristol Channel Pilot is a necessity.

Many NDYC members have sailed to Ireland, Scotland, and several round Britain, as well as further afield.


There are clear navigation marks in the river to mark the deep channel. There is one area to be avoided on neap tides Crow Rock, due east of Inner Pulleys at approximately 51 ͦ04N, 04 ͦͦ12W.

The Bar is dangerous in rough weather and the marks must be observed to the Inner Pulley buoy, when suggested passage times are two hours either side of HW.  In calm weather the Bar is no problem and is passable over a longer time, however the tide runs at up to 3 Kts at half tide.


The river offers a safe refuge for visitors.  Pilotage follow the navigation marks from the Bar Buoy.  Overnight can be had alongside at Appledore Quay beware of the tidal range but on firm mud at low water.  Alternatively, in calm weather it is good to anchor at Instow off the Instow Arms near the sand hills at the northern end of the beach, when you can take the ground fine sand.  Both villages offer a range of good pubs and restaurants. Showers are available at the club phone or e-mail the secretary in advance. 

Lundy Pass

The Club benefits from a group discount Season Ticket to the Island.  Members are eligible to this discount on production of a NDYC Lundy Island Access pass.

Passes are only made available to validated members of NDYC.


See here for details on visiting Clovelly

Chartlet of Clovelly Harbour

Last updated 11:37am on 16 May 2024

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