At dawn we were firmly dried out in the mud of Shand Key - hoping to leave at the first opportunity as the tide came in.
Having explored Rye a bit further we were back on board and having some lunch at 1.15pm - and there still wasn't a sign of the tide rising. A few minutes later it arrived and was if a floodgate had been opened. We could see it visibly rising and hear it flowing into the small quay around us at a fast walking pace. From being high and dry on the mud, we were floating in little over 20 minutes and ready to go by 2pm.
As the wind appeared and was forecast to be light, we prepared the cruising chute. However by the time we reached the entrance from the Rother to the sea it was over 15 knots and rising. We therefore used the main with a single reef and our small jib without reefing - and turned westward with the wind as close to behind us as we dared.
We had hoped to visit Newhaven and were making good progress despite the late start. Phoning ahead we were sorry to hear that their visitors pontoon was full, and understood that an alternative berth would mean tight manoeuvring in a relatively small marina. The wind was now a constant 25 knots and the swell had increased - so we decided to stop for the evening at the well sheltered Sovereign Harbour in Eastbourne.