To the Baltics and back: August 2013

Thursday 1st August
Quite a long day in cloudy, potentially rain type of day, mizzle in the air. After some careful pilotage to keep in deep water, we then set a tacking cone for Kieler Forde.
The 5-12 knots of wind promised by wind guru turned out to be more accurate than ‘‘ forecasts for the last two days. As we approached the town of Kiel the weather improved, the clouds went away but there were hundreds of yachts travelling down in our direction, so we agreed to moor at the British Kiel YC Adventure Training  Centre, where civilians as well as military are made very welcome the mooring might be easier.  This turned out to be partially true.  Finding a space was very easy, straight down and stop.  But we decided to try crossed lines at the stern this time.  Having got the stern lines over the posts, the crossing over meant they dangled in the water, and one line was cut in two almost at the mid point by the propeller!
So quick dash to re-rig another line then to pass the bow ropes to two gentlemen waiting on the pontoon.  By this time, the temperature had risen to very hot and R & A were not in the mood to cook.  A packet of crisps and some beer from the bar sufficed.
We met the owners of Paddington IV a Moody, but who were ex- Southerly owners  and knew Janet & George Bucksey, as well as the previous owners of Tringa II, Maurice and Brenda Meredith.  They send their regards to both.  Another ‘Carina’ was also moored at BKYC and they too were planning to travel through the Nord Oust Kanal (NOK) . And so to rest our weary heads.

Friday 2 August 2013
Awoke to  a very warm morning which promised to get warmer. The locks for the small boats and yachts were being repaired so after a long wait when two large bulk carriers and a small fleet of yachts were being loaded into the canal lock Nº 1, lock nº 2 was discharging another small fleet and one bulk carrier.  It then called in a mock paddle “steamer”, then they allowed all the yachts milling around, about a dozen,   into the lock then without waiting for any other large vessels, collected our money, €18, and closed the lock.  The water level only changed by about 8cm and the longest part of the process was the vey long walk to pay our €18.
The pretty countryside passed by quite rapidly as the day got hotter and hotter.  Boats were sporting umbrellas, tent covers, small sails  and tarpaulins to add shade for their helms. There were few biminies in this flotilla.

At Rendsburg there were many spaces and we moored close to last times spot.  Most crew and skippers were swimming and then showering under the cold water hoses on the jetties to cool off. R v  hot, close to heat stroke, so turned hose on himself in full kit- cooling by evaporation!
The waiter in the quay-side restaurant recognised R and a very cool long beer was served almost without asking!

SATURDAY 3 August 2013
Victualling and shopping for local beer, as the marina is very close to two large supermarkets and an Apothec (like a Boots).  R managed to borrow a large, very sturdy shopping trolly from the sailing club (who run the marina) and so long arms dragging carrier bags were not needed, and much local beer could be brought to the boat including a small crate to replace our folding stool which is collapsing.  Nearly all our mooring since getting into the Baltic, especially when the marinas started to fill up, is bows or stern too.  When the jetty is low down then a stool is needed to get on and off the boat.

Sunday 4 August 2013,
Off again quite early for us, 0900, then a very straight forward journey along the canal.
Not as hot as first half, thank goodness.  During the trip through the canal A decided to calibrate the ships log. We knew it under read but as the ship reads digitally it is  impossible to tell exactly how much when using a measured half mile that is set up in the Chichester Harbour.
It turned out that we need to multiply ships nautical miles by 1.11 to obtain international nautical Miles. Overtaken by one large Lagoon 420 complete with transmitting AIS so we all knew it was “Elefantine” and she travelled on the left side of the canal.
Arrive at the Brunsbuttel  locks, and Elefantine was waiting as were several other boats.  We all had to wait for one dangerous cargo and at the other lock, another cargo boat with which we shared the small lock.
The large locks were undergoing massive repairs complete with coffer dams to protect the canal.  We exited the locks at 1640 at with the tide on the ebb raced up to Cuxhaven SVC marina arriving at 1905 a steady speed of 8knots! arriving just before the tide turned.  We were very tired and turned in quite early.

Monday 5 August,
A poor forecast for Tuesday so we were off again after fuelling and water.  Cuxhaven is very cheap but you pay for each shower, unit of electricity and €1 for 100 litres of water.
It is still less than half the price of the Solent1  Our decision was, however, which hose pipe?  Both were just too short by 2-3 meters!   We were then off, on the ebb again, around the Scharhoorn, and down to Wangerooge hbr  in sun, gentle F3 to 4 mostly on the beam and flat sea.  Oh, and on the VHF Cuxhaven Control, having been in touch with Elefantine yesterday for travelling up the left hand side of a VTS shipping channel, her name called out again today, by Weser/Jade VTS, for the same thing!( and it is a German registered vessel !).  No sign of her in Wangerooge however.
Moral, don’t  fit a Class B transponder if you don’t know the Rules of the Road, or how to read a chart!

Tuesday 6 August,
Didn’t it blow last night, with thunder,  much sheet lighting and the rain found the leak which I thought I had fixed before departing from Emsworth as well.
It is just above the double bunk, but dripped on R.
So today when the sun came out and everything was dry again and R had found the black goo, I cleaned it up and fixed again using electrical tape as masking around the white of hull.
Will let you know about the success rating after the next thunderstorm!
Have invited the boat we are rafted to around for drinks and the single hander we both are crowding, around for the evening meal as it is five kilometres to the nearest shop and three km to hire the bikes.

Wednesday 7 August,
The drinks and meal went very well. Nardo (as in Bernardo), the single handed sailor had departed long before we had risen.
We departed just before our neighbour but we let him pass and then followed him quite closely as the watershed went down to 1.4m. We followed the withies closely and were rewarded by the safe water mark of Spiekeroog and hence into the marina, where many hands came to guide us into our berth, as wind switched from on finger pontoon to off pontoon on final approach!

Thursday 8 August
Spiekerooge town in the sun is a place to eat at a different cafe or restaurant every meal for about a month, without repetition, or shop for tourist tat and holiday clothing.  However, it does have a real butcher, and not having seen such a shop since France, it made a change to see the meat au natural and  not shrink  wrapped in a supermarket freezer cabinet.

Friday 9 August
From Spiekeroog to Langeoog, via the inside swatchway. We had left early in terms of tide and had to fend ourselves away from the immaculate steel yacht next door, which the wind wanted to press us onto, because the keel was less than half down.   The withies were very clear against the sunlit sea once we had slogged past the  zeegat and the incoming tide at the start of the swatchway, which shallowed to 1.3/1.4m at the watershed, for about 2nm.
We had two hours of rising tide  to HW in hand though, to complete the trip.

Arriving at lunchtime allowed us to explore, taking the train into town without charge, and it made the Island more homely, seeing the finish of the International Lions, Langeoog Chapter, charity “Fun Run”, which was being taken very seriously, judging by the faces of the runners who nearly run us down at the harbour train station bridge.

Saturday 10 August
A&R woke up quite tired.  So decided not to get bikes but have a lazy day.  Showers and warm sunny intervals, with gusts up to 20 knots.  How the weather has changed since coming in to the North Sea1

Sunday  11 August
Woke at 10.00, despite being in bed by 23.00. A lot of rain in the night. German Customs called at 10.30, ” Last Port, How many persons on board”, and off they went.
Port sidelight did not light up on nav lights test last night, 2nd time this trip. Bulb/contacts connection not firm enough. Renewed flag halliards, repaired posh coffee cup handle, and control lines hook. Did two lots of hand laundry, as fine drying wind, but the heavy rain came in before the second  lot was dry. The heavy rain meant we forgot to order the breakfast rolls before HM went home for the night.
“Moin Moin”  or “Moin” is the standard all day greeting in the Friesians, it’s supposed to be the sound seals make, and there are certainly a lot of them hauled out on the banks behind the islands. You can just make them out from the channels, and see them clearly with the binocs.
We saw several swimming about near us between Cuxhaven and Wangeooge, but not so many since then.
We think they think Tringa is a fishing boat from the engine sound, because they would pop up abeam or astern, and look disappointed there are no free fish scraps or whole fish on offer.

R wonders if the Friesians have the same belief as the old Scottish Islanders, esp. the Hebridians, that the souls of drowned sailors go into the seals, and maybe the fishermen toss them the by catch as a ” luck bird” or offering?
The St Vaast dolphins certainly take Tringa for a playmate when we go in there.
Monday 12 August
HW at 1624 so we planned to depart for Baltrum at middle day so that we had best tide height over the Baltrum  watershed, which dries to 2m+ in parts.

The W wind had risen up to 16 knots across the pontoons, but our departure, delayed while a F6 rain squall lashed across the harbour, was without incident for once.
We navigated the main channel with acquired Friesian techniques, looking out for the preferred channel buoy at the start of the inside channel, and its bright port hand buoys leading to the duller silver birch port hand withies (branches pointing upwards).

The watershed depth quickly shrank from 2m to 1.3m, and we  were surprised to see a large inter-island freight ferry very very slowly coming the other way.
A Dutch families yacht (known to us from Langooge and earlier isles)dodged carefully round it, and another crept round and carried on towards us. We gave him a wide, slow, careful berth, out to stbd, watching our depth sounder, ’1.3′,’1.3′,’1.3′, keel up 90%, waiting for the slow  lurch to a  stop that means you are on the putty.

But no, we were round him and creeping back to the line of the withies and a steady whole 1.4m in a W F5 rising 6wards.
The ferry open deck aft of the bridge was filled with large tractors and farm dumper trailers, and in sympathy with his load, this  Norrdiech skipper  was ‘ploughing’ his way across the watershed as the rise of  tide and press of wind allowed.
Dark mud flowed behind him, and we left him to it, pressing on well to port past a beam trawler, nets down, happily fishing in  or out of the channel as his straight course took him.

Then we curved round well ahead of him and down the branch channel to Baltrum across the zeegat. Tide well up, we hesitated before entering between the two Easternmost S Cardinals, which guard the two submerged breakwaters. Fortunately we spotted the port and stbd (branches pointing downwards)withies between and behind them leading in to the ferry berths.
Two passenger ferries berthed along the mole helped define the line of approach too.

15.00hrs;Turning into the Baltrum Boot Club pontoons, we set up for the  vacant downwind berths with a F6 up our stern. A soft landing, holding back against the wind, helped by neighbouring crews, then  winched back the bow well clear of the  pontoon. The rising wind and rain squalls drove in 6/8 more yachts and mobos, and we returned the favour  by helping them berth. Glad we decided to stop here and not go on to Norderney today.

We paid our harbour dues and got the loo code at the airfield behind the pontoons, to the Control Tower  operator. Most unusual arrangement yet encountered.
Got back to boat just before a F6/7 40min line squall hit. The sun came out later, but it blew a Moderate Gale F7 circa 26-29kts, most of the rest of the day, easing to  F6 occasionally. We tried to doze, expecting a wet, windy, bumpy, disturbed night ahead despite the bright sunshine.

A chilly, windswept walk round the harbour just before sunset revealed more weather coming downwind, so we hastened back to the boat and ate supper aboard, washed up and started to  do this blog.
A hard rain fell against our stern around 23.00 for 30min straight. At which point we turned in for the night.

Tuesday 13 August 2013
Woke finally at 10.00 after a night of sleep disturbed by wind, wave and rain to 27kts of wind on deck.
At 10.30 there was a thunderclap, followed by a steady 15 min of 38kts (on cusp of F7/Gale 8) driving rain. Cabin lights on during breakfast in August!
By 11.10, sunny intervals, showers and occasional 11kt lulls between the rain squalls.

Today’s MetOffice Fcast; 04.05UTC;
Fisher, NE German Bight; NW 5 to 7, occ Gale 8 in NE Fisher. Moderate or rough, occ very rough in NE Fisher. Thundery showers. Good, occ moderate.

SW German Bight, Humber, Thames; W or NW 4 or 5, occ 6 at first. Moderate in SW German Bight, otherwise slight or moderate. Showers. Good.

Decided from actual weather hitting us that;
1) we are in “NE German Bight” not “SW GB” whatever Met Office thinks.
2) we need to pick our times to visit the Facilities and go shopping in the village very carefully to avoid getting an extra, free, cold power shower rinse.
3) we are not sailing, but shopping today!

No boats rushing to go out, and feel sorry for the organised young families party going off on the round island nature trail just before the 38kts and sequels hit. Think they’ll be very wet before they get back on the ferry. At least they started downwind.

Several real Tringas(red shanks) picking over the mud behind the breakwater last evening and this morning, about two boat lengths away, say 80ft.
The rabbits around the loos in evening are not shy at all, where can we get some shallots or spring onions???

When rain stopped and sun came out, we shopped, ate some herring with a dunkel bier for lunch, dodged the rain, walked the windward seaward wall, winced at the whole  zeegat between here and Nordeney covered in white breakers, with a big surf onto the windward beaches by the village.

Watched the men and machines working on the 2.8million euro sea defence project under way to stop the sea finally breaching the windward dunes right in the town centre, which is at or below its level there.

Wrote postcards back at the boat, posted them, dodged more showers.
Wind finally easing down to a low F5, 17/18 kts at 19.30. Here’s hoping for a peaceful night tonight.

Wednesday 14 August 2013
Departed for Norderney at the leisurely time of 13.30 in a fresh breeze but flat water.  The ferry immediately gave three  blasts, so we remained in the south side until he had reversed into his turn and exited, then followed.  The journey was quite smooth, with the sun out for most of the trip, making a pleasant but exacting passage.
Following the withies, constantly watching the depth sounder while making way for the ferries, work boats and yachts of deep draft,not to mention the beam trawler  who was fishing just adjacent to the shallow and narrow fairway, calls for great concentration at the wheel without ‘George’ the auto-pilot being able to take the strain. R was quite tired when we got in.
Norderney was just a bit busier than last time but finding a berth was easy enough, we have even found one close to the facilities.  The HM remembered us
and T2 was booked in.
Spent a quiet evening on board and turned in early, only to be rafted onto by a Dutch yacht at 22.30. They had left Brunsbuttel at 06.00 that morning, with a 1.90m keel and a steady F6 on the nose, it had been a long day for the 3 of them.

Thursday 15th August
Woke prepared to go on, then saw S/SW 5to7, rain, poor vis f/cast, and put off the ‘no go’ decision as long as possible while the sun stayed out.
It’s a good 19nm as the channels run to Borkum, and two very shallow watersheds to cross,behind Juist and just before the harbour in Borkum, and we are on neap tides still. We did it ok in one go on springs on the way up, but now not enough water to break trip by visiting the very shallow  hbr on Juist.

Glad we did, as the rain started around 15.00, and by the time we walked back to boat from town, everything over the harbour wall had disappeared behind a grey wet wall.
In the evening, around 17.00 onwards until 20.00, a constant stream of sodden crewed yachts and mobos arrived, including “Blue Jacket” of Woodbridge, solo. The crosswind, lulled by the heavy rain, was up again, and we helped several yachts into berths, while our laundry cycled through and we ate a “Hotbox” stew Alice made yesterday.

The crowd were all from Cuxhaven, where they’d been waiting for a break in the weather, per Blue Jacket. HM was really packing them in everywhere-30 or 40 boats of all sizes shoehorned in around us.
Looks as if the very early am Borkum/Juist tide gate is out for us tomorrow, as our raftee will have a tricky exit- a F5 crosswind is pushing us both hard onto the pontoon , and there is a three boat raft dead astern of him.
He wanted to start after HW around 06.25am, and we looked for an 03.30am start. Now all these rafted boats should make for fun before breakfast.

It’s frustrating not to get on, but no worse than sitting in a French port waiting for a N wind to shift or a gale to blow through, I suppose?

Friday 16 August
Left Norderney 12.00, just before LW Juist at 12.14, swapped hbr card for 10 euro note with next door big trawler yacht from Borkum, with large family party on board.
They had rafted on an hour or so after the overnight Dutchman had left late at 08.20, which cost us the morning tide gate.
They had to take kids for a walk before they drove parents crazy, so we left a bit earlier than original 13.30 plan to preserve their sanity.

We squeezed out from underneath them and clear of long, high, mobo next door on our finger, with rib on davits, and clear of rafted yachts including Blue Jacket in bullseye position, on pontoon astern in 12/15kts of crosswind. Textbook exit, despite audience on both boats and cafe terrace, pontoons, etc.
R pleased, esp. When owner of davit mobo shouted, “Perfect, Perfect” in a very loud voice, his lunchtime beer cronies applauded, and BJ’s Skipper gave thumbs up. Now if only  R can manage to come alongside EYH fuel berth like that.

We motored very slowly across the zeegat and up the channel behind Juist, 18-20kts S/SW, more or less bang on nose, knowing that the watershed  would not have much, if any, depth. Got 1.3m least depth, kept going steadily, and then saw a stationary Dutch barge yacht ahead, about 2nm, facing our way. He turned round as we came up, and set off ahead of us in the main”ditch”, moved about 300m then stopped again, on a channel bend, with us behind him, unable to pass, trying to hold position away from the withies.
Eventually, there was enough water to pass wide around him as a big ketch came up astern of both of us.
At which point, the barge yacht suddenly got all time conscious and charged after both of us along the swatchways. We reluctantly decided to miss Juist as there was a very good chance of being heaped there, entry channel is very shallow and seriously dries.

Motorsailed from end of Juist to 3/4 way down Borkum channel, doing a good 4kts. We had an hour of rising tide in hand, but only 1.3-1.5 depth at the watershed, so were surprised when first a Dutch 115 mk1, then  the barge yacht charged past flat out. Needless to say, they both, in turn, then had to cut in far too sharply, causing me to throttle back to avoid them.
BJ’s Skipper had commented only that morning, on the tendency of N European Skippers to go into berthing and other situations at full throttle/ hard astern, rather than the Brits ” porcupines making love” tendency.

Both boats came to the attention of the big Borkum ferry on their way into Port Henry, while we waited, and just got his wash and that of the fast cat ferry just behind, on our way into the main hbr and the WVSB marina.
Met the S115 ‘Jinke’ crew in the PH fish restaurant later; they had seen us in Denmark, and again on the way down, including Norderney.
Berthed, saw Jackie & Heiko, paid for one night, then both switched off our brains . Club had closed early, so walked round to PH for an excellent fish dinner and shared Tutti Frutti ice cream fruit salad while watching vivid orange and purple sunset.
Very tired, due to need to concentrate hard and the lumpy ride in the shallow, winding, windy, channels and rain has started, so went back boat and fell into bed by 23.00.

Saturday 17 August
A slept til nearly 11.00, R got up to do ‘ Colours’ at 08.00, but then went back to bed ” just for 10mins more”= woke up at 10.00!
Looks like we are not moving today, and maybe taking Sunday off as well, as weather due to break, possibly tonight/Sunday, and WvSB pontoons well sheltered compared to PH, which is  very open to S and SW, due to Nature Reserve saltings that side.

R has stopped fretting about lack of momentum, and ‘

A went to bed at 20.00 after awe walked to ferry terminal side of harbour and supper on board. R blogged and exchanged texts with friends sailing to Venice from N Croatia then turned in at 23.00 after walking to ferry terminal side of harbour.

Sunday 18 August 2013
Forecast SW F7 came through in small hours of Sunday morning, but we were well sheltered in the Clubs corner of the harbour.
Walked 2.5km to Lidl’s at the Café Zur Heidi’s bus stop,and caught the bus back to swop some English books with Jackie.
Turned in early, but R could not get to sleep.

Monday 19 August
Moved off at 05.20 from Borkum, across the Eems estuary, outside to towards Schiermonnikoog. R had not slept at all since previous night Not moving fast enough to make morning tide entry to the harbour there,  initially, due light wind and strong tide.
At 10.15, wind switched direction onto the nose and increased to 17kts then 20+. We slogged away up wind and tide. The channel shown on charts and plotter at NW seaward end  of Schiermonnikoog was not identifiable* so we motor sailed onto the SW zeegat entrance, then surfed along with the wind astern or abeam down the bending channel, worrying about an apparent tear that appeared high on the mainsail leech.
By 14.15, wind and sea had gone to very calm, and we snaked over the sands on a side channel at dead LW or so, then applied the Southerly handbrake by the start of the channel to the harbour along with 3/4 Dutch Barges of various sizes and a Dranscombe Lugger.

By 19.20, the wind had got up again, to 22kts, as the tide rose, and we were anchored on 5m of chain in 1.3+m of water on the windward side of the channels. We raised the anchor quickly, because a 6m Dutch barge Yacht was dragging its anchor across the main channel, and the ferry was coming up it.

All 4 crew had turned in and gone to sleep without keeping an anchor watch.
We shouted, to no avail.  We got to them just as they woke up on the leeward face of the channel bumping in the ferry wake, which had eased past them. Fortunately their engine started first time while we stood by.
By 19.50 we were rafted up despite the strong wind constantly blowing us off the raftee, and turning in, very tired after the 14hr trip, so tired that we could not face even making a sandwich for supper.
(* turns out the channel has closed up and been unbuoyed for at least the last 4 years!)

Tuesday 20 August
We dropped the mainsail, tied it down,  and A renewed the stitching on the main, which fortunately was all the problem, the material was ok. Other suspect areas were also re-sewn. Dozing and various other boat tasks  occupied us for the rest of the day.
Michel & Anka on Morgenster arrived from Lawuersoog. They had had to lift out as their new keel shackle had broken and keel had drooped.  We’d last seen them on Wangooge.

Wednesday 21 August
Stayed in harbour, walked around the SW corner of the isle by beach and dune paths, saw many butterflies, dragonflies, and wild flowers. Stopped for a cup of tea at the beach cafe/windsurf and landyacht school on stilts, which as part of its steps facing out to sea has the only remaining SW channel marker, (a red port hand pole beacon.) of the defunct channel.
Morgenster hosted us for dinner that night, and chatted til late.

Thursday 22 August
09.15 Followed them over 4 channels watersheds to Nes, the Ameland harbour. The ships log had clogged with mud and sand again, so distance noted from GPS. There was little wind, and the haze gradually grew thicker and vis dropped slowly. By the time we rafted to Morgenster as directed by HM, the vis was under a nM by reference to a large porthand buoy out in the main channel, and stayed there til late that night.
The log is still clogged. A shopped at the Jumbo supermarket, then we wined and dined Morgenster and again chatted until late in the evening.

Friday 23 August
Stayed at Nes, helped Michel fetch his new engine battery, the old one had cooked off on the way over yesterday. Then we sat and read in the sunshine and fresh breeze, while Morgenster went for a walk. It was a long walk and a relaxing read, because both boats missed the supermarket and shops. Wind rose steadily towards midnight. Undecided as to whether to move on tomorrow.
Forecast is good, so all the islands harbours get booked up.

Saturday 24 August
Woke up early, 0730 hrs but no movement in Morgenster so snoozed another hour then to be told winds too high so Morgenster was staying put.  Windguru got it right again.  We then hired bikes just in time before all the ferry passengers had arrived to hire their machines. A very slick organisation, we were asked what sort of bike we wanted,  the model was selected and saddle adjusted then to the checkout, name, address and money please, bar code read and off we went.
Two solid working sit up and beg machines with pannier carrier racks with elastic straps, front and rear mudguards,brakes, lamps and 7 gears.  Off to shop for food and local beers.  On the bikes we cycled to the light house on the western end, then over the dunes and so returned to Nes the town and back to harbour.
I do believe that the Dutch think it is very macho to have the most basic of machines and then to ride them at full speed around the island without regard to any other rider or pedestrian:  cars, lorries and vans are obliged to give way by law.
As in Spiekeroog and Langeoog bike was king so move over pedestrian.  Evening meal at  harbour café then were told Morgenster wants to be off at 0800, so early to bed, R’s knee very sore tonight.  Looked at web cam of Terschelling marina, it’s very crowded, we will wait till Monday to go there.

Sunday 25th August 2013
Well, we were up in time for Michel’s family to depart only to be greeted with the news that the forecasters got the weather wrong again and today was going to be F5-6.  R &A both went back to sleep. Rest of the day a F6-7 actually blew, as  it is at this moment in the evening, only being low water, the boats in the harbour are fairly stable, at high water this  afternoon they were being flung as far as their warps would let them. Spray breaking over the old ferry jetty and the Dutch barges berthed on its western side.
What do you do in Holland when the weather is bad, go out on the bike of course!
With the eastern end unexplored, by us, off we went right into the wind.  Puffing and wheezing up the slopes we did get to the view point when we could see most of the island, what a view it was.  The journey back was very much easier as the wind stayed in the east.  We saw probably a marsh harrier and a peregrine hunting over the marsh land and fields as well as a small flock of eider ducks in the sea.
Coming back to the boat Michel was vey keen to swap addresses and telephone numbers, which we did before going to town for supper.

Monday 26th August
Started off intending to visit Terschelling again, and do some laundry, top up diesel, etc.
The day was sunny, quite warm, and we were going well, 7+kts with the ebb once over the watershed behind Terschelling with a favourable  E wind and flood tide, so we decided to go onto Vlieland instead, which isle we’ve not seen.

However, Tide ebbing strongly against the E wind by the time we, Morgenster, a huge catamaran island ferry, and some dozen yachts, Dutch barges, and large traditional sailing ketches all arrived at the deep channel behind  Vlieland  as the half ebb was well underway. Harbour entrance between two long wooden piers is narrow, about as wide as Shepards Wharf entrance,  and with 4-7kts of tide across it, it was definitely turn onto line one at a time, and aim for the up tide pier at full throttle. Good news was that the huge ferry berths further W at the village, not in hbr.

Ok once between piers though the harbour was very crowded: think Shepards Wharf  on RTIR weekend, But with both an Old Gaffers and Tall Ships rally in at same time.
The pontoons are Haslar/EYH spaced, so good practice for the Solent,  in a F5 crosswind  after the wide open spaces usual further North. Some Continental Cabaret was provided in the crosswind,  but we Parked ok on F, Morgenster berthed on D pontoon. Paid our hbr dues, checked out facilities, hbr shop, said hello to Morgenster, and noted cafe and two bike hire firms for Tuesday.

R’ s left ankle still aching after Sunday bike ride, so rested it, applied cold cans etc, strapped it up and at 18.30 having dined in the cockpit, R hobbled below as the steady f4/5 E wind had gone cold. Blogged, and rested R’s ankle some more.

This entry was posted in member cruise archive. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.