Sand and shingle beach facing SE that stretches from Lepe to the council run Calshot Activities Centre (Tel: 02380 892077) in Southampton Water. The beach is quite high so becomes dumpy strong SE winds. The bottom of the beach is a flat area of sand enclosed by a series of shingle banks. The area dries out for two hours during spring lows but is ankle to waist deep on a neap low. The average height sailor will be able to touch the bottom anywhere inside. Best wind is NE to SW. The locals go out with the tide in SE to S and sail outside – watch out for the banks as they get covered and can do serious damage to fins. In W and SW winds there is a shadow effect from the Lepe headland and only ceases around 2 – 300 metres from the shore. This area of the Solent is very shallow, so most other craft stay away. The Solent double high tide works here and means that it will ebb in two thirds of the time it flowed. For wave sailing the Bramble Bank, two mile offshore, works in SW 5 on an ebb tide so don’t sail this alone. Look out for the sign near Stanswood Rescue as you drive through the first car park detailing restricted launching. Local knowledge really helps gat the most out of this spot. Drop in to Solent Sailboards (Tel: 02380 894000) for hints and a copy of the tide table. Hythe Marine (Tel: 02380 843290), in nearby Hythe on the shores of the Solent is another local store that boasts of selling the best collection of wet and fashion clothing in the area.
Getting there: Take A326 from Southampton to Fawley then take B3053
Parking: Car parks next to the beach
Ideal Wind: NE to SW
Accomodation: At Calshot Activities Centre
Amenities: Toilets, café’s, shop, centre, accommodation and tuition
Suitable for: All abilities