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North Biscay Cruising Guide

By doina — last modified Sep 29, 2010 04:02 PM

Published: 2010-09-29 16:02:50
Countries: France

North Biscay : The west coast of France - Brest to Bordeaux

By Mike and Gill Barron
Published by Imray (7th edition 2005)
ISBN 0 85288 702 7
Updates at Imray (2009)

Also published in French as "Côte Atlantique - de Brest à Hendaye" by Editions du Plaisancier (Vagnon)

This beautifully produced cruising guide could well be described as the flagship of the Royal Cruising Club’s Pilotage Foundation. The original source of this guide goes back to the end of the 19th century when Frank Cowper published a book under the title of “Sailing Tours – Falmouth to the Loire”. In the late 1950s, the venerable Adlard Coles produced an expanded guide that covered a wider area of the French Atlantic coast. Successive editions of the North Biscay Pilot eventually morphed into this latest guide, now in its seventh edition. The book covers in great detail the French Atlantic coast between the Ushant and the Gironde, one of the most attractive cruising ground in the world, not just for the sheer beauty of its countless coves and estuary, but also the quality of its seafood and, as one moves south, its excellent wines.

Every port, marina or anchorage along that 300 mile coast, as well as the available facilities, are described in detail. The more important ports are accompanied by a detailed plan and, in most cases, also an aerial colour photographs. The standard of the presentation, throughout the book, is of the highest quality, which has become a hallmark of all Imray cruising guides. This latest edition also incorporates a list of essential waypoints, an added bonus to users of electronic charts but also to those still using paper charts. The authors have sailed the area for many years and have also checked out all facilities by visiting the area on land. Their wide knowledge, but also affection for this beautiful region of France, comes through on every page of this excellent cruising guide.

North Biscay is one of a score of pilot books and cruising guides published by the Royal Cruising Club Pilotage Foundation. Now in its thirtieth year, the Foundation was started in 1976 with the help of Dr Fred Ellis, an American member of the Royal Cruising Club, who generously endowed the Foundation to enable sailors to widen their horizons. The books published by the RCC Pilotage Foundation cover not only popular cruising areas, but also guides to little frequented parts of the world, which could only be printed with the support of such an altruistic endeavour. This very much reflects the Foundation's main objective which is "to advance the education of the public in the science and practice of navigation". All its publications are regularly revised and updated by members of the Royal Cruising Club, who usually do this work on a voluntary basis.

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