Segling 2018 - augusti 2018
torsdag 30 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
A half-a-day in Smögen
Crew along Smögen "board-walk", spectacular wooden walkway where boats moor (but where is Claus?)
There is a tiny drizzle in the air. No real rain but still very annoying. We make it a slow morning, buy some groceries, have a loom in some “summer’s clothes stores”, Smögen is full of them and, at this time of the year, they throw thing at you.
At 12-noon we realize that the rain will last so we set off for Marstrand, the other iconic west coast pearl. We make a tour through “it all”, we see all the places that skipper, and also Claus, have roamed since young age. It is a hearty welcome-back after three years in ”bigger waters”
It takes us 5 hours to reach Marstrand, which also is almost empty. Few boats at the end of the season but a bit more life on land; Marstrand is a bit of an all-year-round conference centre. Max is now a fully self-dependent dinghy driver. He launches the dinghy from the davits by himself. Gets the petrol tank and gets going all by himself. Takes Mommy for ride, very proud.
Dinner from Sushi take-away. While dumping the garbage Disa suddenly finds herself with a big sack of freshly cooked “sea-crayfish” from a neighbouring boat(!), dinner for tomorrow.
Log Motor 5 hours
onsdag 29 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Finally, after 3 years, Swedish waters again
Smögen, a jewel on the "West coast" of Sweden
Today is the last “big” (not so big, considering) jump to Sweden straight across Skagerak. At 0600 hours sharp the engine is fired up and we are off. It is a grey but dry day, no wind, and we make way inside the island along “blindleje”. We pass a gigantic oil contraption marked “Petrobras” (so also Brazilians are drilling up here).
Once out at large we set course 90 degrees. At this time, and perfectly according to forecasts, there is a southerly breeze, about 10 knots, that sweeps us along at 6-7, occasionally 8, knots. We have a wonderful sailing day. The wind is absolutely stable, the sea is conspicuously calm, and we just glide along.
Our heading proves to be true and we make land contact at Hållö, well known landmark at the Swedish coast. At 1900 hours we are moored in alongside in Smögen harbour, wonderful Smögen, a jewel in the archipelago. The place has grown considerably since “last time”, especially on the outside, in Kleva, a whole new village has popped up, perched on sheer red granite.
We celebrate appropriately our return to home waters, with champagne in the cockpit, followed by take-away sushi in the blue saloon.
Log 14877, motoring 3 hours.
tisdag 28 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Finally into Kristiansand
22 meter bridge from the other day. Exactly what Aquaryd draws...(?!)
Today, weather comes back with a vengeance. Yesterday’s softness is today a vicious wind from the east and RAIN. Tons of it. We huddle down having breakfast below – in the “blue saloon”, as it were. Then we muster up some courage, decide that this place is a bore and dress up for party – dancing in the waves. We can sneak inside, below a chain of islands and only at some short spots are we subject to the full forces of the North Sea in a gale. So we dance at some spots, otherwise we carry on, the rain wipping our faces. In calm passages, though, sandwiches and stuff appears from below
Approaching Kristiansand, we pass deep into the archipelago, where we pass the nicest spots with vacation houses perched on rocky shores, always with a “boat facility” en suite; these places are only reached by boat.
We moor up in Kristiansand at 1600 hours, pretty much at the same spot where we were three years ago. Outgoing and ingoing paths now cross and we have made a full circle around “the pond” (the North Atlantic Ocean). We celebrate with a full dinner on board.
tisdag 28 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
To Arendal, Norway
Lovely Arendal central harbour
It is a soft day with a slow start. No wind at all and th sun comes out shortly. Max, this early morning, obtains his driver’s licence for th dinghy. He is a fast learner and soon he roams about the place at max (forgive the pun) speed. We also make some additions to some personal equipment; rain gear and stuff. At noon we depart for Arendal, about 40 nm. up the coast.
A bit passed Kristiansand start the so called “blindleje”, an inside and protected route that runs far upwards Oslo. Unfortunately, the Norwegians have decided to build bridges and power cables across the water allowing only 19 meters underneath, so we have to make detours at some places. Otherwise the route is extremely charming. At 1700 hours we enter the fjord leading into Arendal and we are flabbergasted by this idyllic place. There are houses and constructions everywhere around the fjord. Every hill, every valley, every geological undulation is packed, north, west, east and south.
We are late in the season and the vast sailing facilities provide good mooring. We choose a guest facility somewhat to the west although, as we later realize, the central harbour close to the church would have been even better, more charmning. Here, around the central harbour, is a ring of restaurants (in Google we learn that there are 47 of them in the town). While Max roams this new place in the dinghy we make arrangements with restaurant Castelle, where we have dinner.
Log 14795, motoring 6 hours
söndag 26 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
In Båly's "vacation site"
Happy crew enjoying a Captain's welcome
The gorgeous weather from yesterday continues We wake up in a sunny although somewhat cold morning with…no wind. So, a slow morning with an ambitious breakfast and away about 0930 hours. We motor out, this time in the southern arm of Egersund fjord. Ther wind builds up slowly durong the day but it comes from pretty dead astern which does not become Aquaryd very well. Very slow sailing. So we motor on and, lo and behold, we find another fjord due east-90 - degree turn - southern exit. Today we decide to stop for lunch by just floating about among a multitude of salmon farming facilities. The town of Flekkefjord lies close by, up the fjord. After lunch we hoist sails and make a glorious dash for a point due south. This makes for excellent sailing almost close-hauled for 3-4 nm. Magnificent sailing, finally, and Magnus at the helm thrives. Then we turn east and double Lindesnes – the southern-most point of the Kingdom of Norway.
We end up in a “holiday construction site” at the eastern base of the Lindesnes peninsula, Båly. A brand new harbour, a hotel complex and lots of small, modern cottages for vacationing Norwegians. On this Sunday evening at the end of the season, the place was deserted. A couple of boats in the harbour. It is late in the evening so we make dinner on board and end a memorable day. We are now in Skagerak.
lördag 25 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Egersund in our hearts. An unexpected jewel on the southern coast
A hearty, embracing welcome to Egersund
Final step…away from Stavanger/Tananger. On board are Disa and Magnus, Birger B, Claus K, daughter Cecilia and her son Max (oldest grandchild, age 11). Yesterday we arranged for provisions, food, drunk, water in the boat, etc. Laundry has been picked up at Hotel Humeren. We are seat to go. Weather-wise the usual…showers and these prevail when we leave the harbour at 0930 hours.
Winds are weak and we motor along the coast line that, at the part of Norway consists of…sandy beaches. This is an agricultural corner of the country and we see undulating fields and meadows with quaint farms evenly distributed like patches of cream in a cake. Showers make way for a sunny day.
All of a sudden the coast changes character. Gone are the meadows and instead we see coarse grey stone that protrudes in high, ever-repeating rounded promontories.….and in all this there is, quite unexpectedly, a narrow fjord that cuts due east into the coast. We penetrated this protected heaven about 2 nm. At the end there is a 90-degree corner and a bridge, good for 22 m. We draw…22m (skipper controlled measured this before leaving) so, with a bit of drama, we glide under and into the charming little town of Egersund. Lively place. Saturday night fest at the harbour café with live music. Houses on hill sides all around us. We are greeted by a rather spectacular lady statue at the harbour entrance.
Somewhat overwhelmed by this unexpected sweetness we “make the town”, eh…that is we quickly realize that the local “vinmonopolet” (national liquor store) is closed (well, Sunday evening so no big surprise). We do find a grocery store and make some additions to our stores. We cook dinner on board and enjoy ourselves thoroughly.
Log 14661 nm. Motor 6 hours
fredag 17 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Stop-over in Stavanger
Tangen harbour is an excellent alternative. Easy to reach, good service...and close to the airport
Leisure day in Tangen Harbour. Clean the boat, empty the fridge, fill up on fuel and water. Some small repair work on the boat. Hotel “Humeren” proves to be the hub of it all. They sell diesel, fix laundry, provides excellent food and also act as harbour masters. The daily fee is NOK 100 for leaving the boat empty during a week, very reasonable.
Ludde flies home in the evening while the rest of the crew takes the bus into Stavanger, a 30-minute ride.
Friday night in Stavanger is a lively thing. The harbour quarters are full of people, old and winding streets full of cafés and restaurants. The harbour has an extension right into the central town square where big liners can stick their bow into the very centre of town. Amazing! A place to visit!
torsdag 16 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Last passage towards Stavanger, Norway
Oil rig at night. A certain safety distance seems appropriate
Out of Lerwick under grey skies. We do some final souvenir shopping and return the token to LYC, Lerwick Yacht Club. Leave 0930 hours and motor out into the southerly wind around Brassey Island point, where we set sails. The winds are very favourable considering out heading, about 110 degrees.
…and here we go into the night….when we enter “oil alley”. Oil rigs are conspicuous in the daytime, at night the are dominating. Huge towers with millions of lights, often top off with a “flare” (of waste gas that is burned off). And they are everywhere. At one point we could count no less than 21 “light beacons” all round us. They demand a 500 meter safety distance and at times calls us, very politely, on the VHF when out heading seems too close. We, on the other hand, think 500 meters is quite too close and keep a greater distance. We do not want to get our sails torched…or black from soot.
In the morning winds veer against us and the “Norwegian west coast weather”, rain, hit us badly. Pouring down as we sail hard into the wind. 6 hours before ETA (expected time of arrival) winds ease up a bit and we can bear up to the point of entry into the Stavanger archipelago. We hear constant air traffic above us. Stavanger is the centre of the oil business in Norway and helicopters fly in and out on courses parallel to ours.
We have been advised to aim for Tangen harbour in Tananger on the outside of the Stavanger peninsula. This proves to be a good choice. The harbour is well protected, reasonably priced and the people meet up nicely. Einar, the harbour captain, defies the downpour and helps us moor without rain gear.
This is the end of phase 2 of the return voyage. Remains 8-9 days with anew crew down to Malmö and completion of Project Aquaryd
Log 14620. Motoring 3 hours.
onsdag 15 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Repose in Lerwick
Lerwick is built of stone. Very solid and most British
Leisure day. Morning coffee in solitude while other walk off to the showers at the local yacht club. This is a fancy place with excellent facilities, showers, pub with darts, an upper level with a restaurant and pool table. Outside a terrace with a floating pontoon.
Skipper reports at the customs control and we are properly let into the UK after which we can lower the yellow flag.
We have joint second breakfast at an Italian eatery and then wander off to the local museum which is extraordinarily good. It goes to show that Lerwick, these days, is a pretty affluent community with huge incomes from the oil industry. Especially interesting we found the very early history about how these islands came about, sitting as they are on the same fault line as the Caledonian canal. There are rocks 2,5 billion years old sitting next to young ones of 300 million years.
After lunch at a local hotel, skipper sets out to change the oil in the main engine. We have reached 200 motor hours from Halifax. This is a simple but messy procedure after which we take our full environmental responsibility by having a taxi take skipper to the local waste dump, where the waste oil (8 litres) is correctly deposited.
We top up provisions, some wanders the streets with a camera and finally we have a last dinner in Lerwick.
Tomorrow we leave for Stavanger, Norway, 220 miles to the ESE. We are expecting excellent SW-winds of reasonable force and the going should be good.
söndag 12 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Next to last passage, from Faeroys to the Shetlands
Dawn over the northern seas
We wake up to a grey day with very little wind. Quick breakfast and we are of at 0745 hours. Motor out and set course to 110 degrees. After an hour and a half we have wind and hoist everything we have got.
This steady easterly wind, about 15 knots, keeps with us for the next days, actually all the way to the Shetlands. It does, however, veer to our disadvantage and we find ourselves being pushed progressively more to the south. At midnight, we have a gigantic oil rig on our nose. A monster that spits fire and smoke. Ken, the geophysicist on board explains that the “flare” the gas the find which is considered a waste product.
We decide to tack but the new tack is no good with swells that stop our progress. So remains to motor 80 nm into the wind. Boring and tedious! Not exactly “sailing” but we need to make time to avoid the first autumn storm that is forecasted into Stavanger on Friday…..! Need to be there before!
Moored in Lerwick at 2300 hours on the 13th of August after an informative exchange with the Port Control over the VHF. Not many boats here and we are probably at the end of the season. At the Albert Building, where the Port Control is situated we immediately get a “welcome package” including keys to WC/Showers at the Lerwick Boat Club. Harbour fee is a moderate £15/day. We roam the streets at midnight. Buildings here are “British”, grey stone hewn from the very rock they are standing on. Buildings that will stand forever. Very much different from what we saw in Torshavn. We finish the evening with a pint at the “Flint”, the closest Pub that we could find (very close).
Log 14406 nm. Motor 21 hours.
lördag 11 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Beautiful Faeroy islands. Stunning !!
Crevises and gorges everywhere. A natural harbor that provided foothold for a community for ages....before cars came
We rent car ( little Kia Picanto that is really tiny and provided with an outboarder-like engine…) and drive around for two days. These islands are overwhelmingly strange and beautiful. Not a tree in sight outside towns. Huge hillsides in lush green and dotted with sheep(“like small white clouds on the chlorophyll”…as the popular Swedish song goes). Cliff faces that dive vertically hundreds of meters straight into the sea. One sees geology at work; erosion, land slides, caves... Water floods down the hillsides, in creeks and sometimes into water falls. We see tiny settlements perched on promontories into the wind. They are often based on access to a natural “harbour”, where goods were landed and hoisted uowards by cable cars or steep staircases hewn from the rock itself. Farming is everywhere, even in the remotest and most inaccessible valleys – sheep “farming”. The islanders seem to thrive. Houses are well kept.
It is all hard to describe adequately. Recommended visit !!
Torshavn is a quaint place with an old part, narrow alleys, thatched roof everywhere. Special indeed.
Tomorrow, Sunday, early morn, we head for the Shetlands
fredag 10 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Reaching the Faeroys
The FAeroys display spectacular cliff faces
The meteorological situation is weird. It is as if Vestmannaeyja is at the origin of a coordinate system of the winds. They stop here or the start here, both in an east-west dimension as well as in the north-south one. The Gods of winds honour the Gods of fire here, it seems….(?)
Today, starting at 0400 hours we have tremendous gusts of northerly winds (40 knots) that push us hard to the trawler we are moored to. These winds sweep down from Eyrafjattlajökull and reach a bit out at sea. Further south-east we should have fair winds. Clear sunshine helps.
We are cleared out of Iceland and aim for Faeröys. Should be 2 days and a bit. The difficulty I to get out of the corner of the harbour we re stuck in. With a coordinated action and paying attention the the wind gusts we manage very nicely and set out into hard winds from the north. We are going south east and with jib only we make good speed. The following 24 hours are mixed. We take turns in 4-hours watches and do 147 nm. in the first 24 hours, 162 in the second 24 hours. Predicted wind patterns do not match reality and instead we are plagued by a stubborn westerly that do not give us good speed into the Faeroys. The last 8 hours we motor in and enjoy a spectacular landscape with gigantic cliff faces in the setting sun.
Moor in Torshavn harbour at 0100-hours after 2 days and 14 hours from Vestmannaeyja. Captain’s welcome ensues (crackers, cheese, beer and “Gammeldansk” (a Danish concoct that we regard as “strong” medicine). We sleep like babies.
måndag 6 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Vestamannaeyja, a most special and somewhat spooky plaqce
Aquaryd at Vestamannaeyja. The ridge behind the harbor is all "new", from 1973
We had a long motoring session. No wind or some wind from the wrong direction made us motor around the Keflavik peninsula. At 0400 hours the wind had veered from east to north-east, precisely as predicted and precisely what we wanted. We set sails and had a great sail in the early morning. Just in front of us rose Mount Eyafjattlajökull, infamous 8 years ago for stopping air traffic throughout the northern hemisphere. On the very same fault line, further south, lies Vestamannaeyja and, upon approach, we realize that this must be a cousin to Mount Doom. Rocks of strange shapes stick out of the water here and there and the harbour entrance is encroached by a lava field (that threatened to block the entire entrance in 1973). The islanders saved the day by sprouting copious amounts of water to cool and divert the lava flow. The harbour is actually better protected now than before the eruption.
The harbour master instructs us to moor outside a trawler, whereby we do not have to worry about the tide (2 m).
Log 137823. Motor 16 hours. From Halifax we have now motored 168 hours.
Afternoon in Vestmannaeyjar. The harbour is crowded with people who have attended the “end-of-eruption” festival, that is celebrated every year and is the biggest one in all Iceland. It celebrates the end of the 5-month long eruption of Eldfjell in 1973.
We go up to the memorial they have built. This box-like structure is build around a house that was buried under 15 meters of ash and pumice and later excavated so you can now have a look at it inside the memorial.
At 02.00 in the morning January 24, 1973, a kilometre-long rift opened in the mountain above the city and started to eject ash, pumice and lava. Numbers and human stamina are staggering. Serendipity saw the island through this. By chance the entire fishing fleet was in the harbour due to a storm the day before. 5000+ individuals could be evacuated the same day. The eruption lasted 5 months with lava relentlessly pushing over house after house. Only one (1) individual died. 200 houses were destroyed. The power plant was pushed over like a house of cards….
Today Heimeyja (the main island) is as thriving as ever. The biggest fishing port in Iceland.
We have dinner at Tanginn where they have come upon the gorgeous idea to mix blue cheese with the meat loaf of a hamburger before frying it. Extremely testy. We go to bed early, we have a long haul ahead, 2,5 days.
söndag 5 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Last daty in Reykjavik
Extremely extravagant opera house. Prpbably projected before the bank crisis when all of the island had a collective hubbris (?)
Last day in Reykjavik. After a slow morning we go to the grocery store and spend some money. Food prices relatively OK and not as exorbitant as the restaurant prices. We top off the water tank and some days ago we boarded 505 l of diesel fuel.
We have our final Croque Madame at the Sandholt restaurant. This is Ken’s find and we have had a number.
Afternoon coffee and we are off. We will sail during the night to Vestmaneya and arrive there in the ´morning. We all look forward to see how they restored the town/harbour after the devastating volcanic eruption in 1973.
We have had a fantastic and restful time in Reykjavik. Now time to move on….!
lördag 4 augusti 2018 - Skrivet av
Some days in Reykjavik
Italian navy runs a beautiful full rigger......
A gorgeously crisp day. Sunshine but now particularly warm. Enjoyable. We have a leisure day. Washing, cleaning the boat, walk about learning the city. We are positioned right underneath” the fancy concert house HARPA, an astonishing construct in green glass. The old harbour area has been turned into a tourist environment but the city itself struggles to achieve some architectural style. Sprouting in all directions. Quite expensive, too!
Next couple of days not so nicce. Weather is very varying, it seems. Some rain.We enjoy the “Swimbaths”- Icelandics love swimming, indoor and outdoor. This place also has a gym and a sauna/spa, both are outstanding and we enjoy them tremendously.
We also join the “Haunted walk” one evening. Olí is a historical teacher at the high school and he has put together a 2-hour promenade in central Reykjavik telling us folkloric tales, about elves, about criminals and haunted places. Ghosts and mediums. Crazy but quite enjoyable.
The museum on Volcanic Iceland was impressive. Two films about 1) Vestmaneya eruption in 1973 and the 2010 Eyrafjattlajökul eruption that stopped air traffic in Europe for a week. Especially since we will be going to Vestmaneya, these films were interesting to see.
…and the whales at their museum. Wow. Some animals! The Bowhead, aka as the Greenland whale, supported the entire eskimo world throughout history. One animal sufficed for an entire village for a whole year. Then industrial whaling all but drew them to extension. They were banned in 1976 and are slowly recovering. Can be 200 years old !! …and the Blue, huge (up to 200 tons), LONG but relatively slender.
The new crew has arrived. First Calle on the 3:rd. He is a first time traveller on Aquaryd. Then, on the night into the 5Th, Ludde arrived. He has been on board many times.