30th January 2008
To Venice in Excel
Terry - We spoke at the Boat Show last week ref the above.
I bought the Excel inflatable last year at the Camping and Caravan Show at Birmingham. I must say it is an excellent craft and I thought you may wish to read about the wee adventures we had with her.
We took her to Venice with the Caravan last year and pitched at Ca'Savio a long spit of land to the East of Venice. The three of us; my 2 sons, both rugby backs and weighing some 30 stones together + me at a mere 11 stones, + 2 gallons of fuel and some rations and water etc, headed to Venice in the Excel c/w 3.3 Hp Mariner. We routed via the southern tip of San Nicolo at San Pietro de Volta then rounded the choppy headland and paralleled the coast until we reached San Lazzaro de Armini. Not being certain of our position and having no charts with us, we beached and walked ashore and like Stanley finding Livingstone, walked up to the myriad of beautiful people roasting like joints of lamb on the beach, and said we were from Britain and and was this Venice. Like so many people they spoke English and pointed the direction to Venice with the tower of St Marks prominent in the distance.
We headed over the Izmir amidst the myriad of craft and headed to the Grand Canal and edged in slowly cutting the engine and using the paddles until we passed the Bridge of Sighs. We then stopped and had a huge meal of Ice Cream.
The return journey was via Le Vignole to the North of Venice and out across the Izmir toward Punta Sabbioni, then headed South through the choppy Isthmus that was filled with ferries and other large craft. We then paralled the coast some 800m south of the beach until we recognized our landing beach and headed towards land.
The Excel coped remarkable well with the trip, the sea state was favourable if a little choppy in places and we had plenty of room to store our spare fuel,water and rations and pump.
We will be off somewhere this year and the Excel will be packed although I may need a larger Outboard or a larger craft like the Seamark Boats you are selling!