Monday, 8 August 2011

Southward bound

We left Kapellskär heading south...  with flexible plans. The weather was bright and fresh,  but with one of those forecasts that suggested harder weather to come:-).
South meant weaving between the islands and a good watch on the charts and GPS, but we made good pace.  Eventually we reached a more open fjärd and still unsure of what was over the horizon we stopped and took in a reef.
It's good to be prepared, but this time it proved unnecessary.  Soon after the wind eased and we were cruising comfortably towards our destination on Själlbottna - eventually mooring up against a long sloping cliff. We ended up stopping over a second night when the forecast wind  came through in the night, with rain and drizzle to follow.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Kapellskär again

From Rödlöga it was back to Kapellskär and a quiet evening with a walk round the headland, and grilling on the shore by the marina. A chance to catch our breath before start
ing the trip homeward.

Saturday, 6 August 2011

In habited

Another windy day... and we head south to Rödlöga skärgård on a short leg looking for a sheltered spot for the night.   And find it we did - but suprisingly, for being so far out, our little haven had a house at the inneer end of the bay so we swapped boaty neighbours for the fastland type that play music and rush about in motorboats.  

But, by evening things quietened down and we were able to enjoy the by now traditional sunset grill.   Even the deckchair came out for an airing.  (It's not on my list for next season ;-)

Friday, 5 August 2011


The morning bus brought a double crew and we were all set to put to sea again to see what the northern archipelago had to offer.  What we found was Norrpada - perhaps the nicest island we visited all summer.  Not that big, but not too many boats either - a superbly tranquil spot in the warm summer sun. And given a clamber the views were just great. :-)

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Time stopped at Kapellskär

From Rödlöga it was an easy leg north again to the little gueast harbour at Kapellskär.   This turned out to be a gem.  The facilities are basic - although there are showers about a kilomter away at the campsite -  but the location was super - sat in the midst of a nature reserve and sheltered from most that the weather could do.

We had a leisurely afternoon - walking up to the ferry terminal to check the bus times and then taking a rummage in the secondhand shop and café by the beach across the road.  Bargain of the day - a wheelie shopping trolley that will come in handy next time we have to hike to get groceries.

Evening time saw us grilling on the shore.. and the following day I was at my leisure as the crew took the morning bus back to Stockholm to catch up with real life...

Sun bathing at the beach, a walk in the woods, sitting in the cockpit reading.  What holidays are all about really.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011


The plan was to head out again, northwards into the archipelago.   Not a bad plan, but the weather was fresh winds from the north as we set out from Möja. 
Tacking out into the channel we struggled at first with the main not being fully set, but finally settled down to beat our way windward with plenty of spray coming over us as we met the chop.  To be honest we weren't pointing that great, although it got better as the day progressed and I got the trim sorted.  And as the day wore on the winds lightened which made things easier.

We set Rödlöga as our goal, which I thought would be about four hours, but headwinds, and the lighter winds in the afternoon made it longer... When we arrived we sailed around to the northside to look for a mooring - but it was a bit like Picadilly Circus, so we back-tracked around the island to find a quieter spot... which we did - a quiet headland with just enough water to get in to shore.  

By that time though it was seven hours on the water and I was tired and bad tempered and not good company for the crew, more's the pity.

Lesson learned - be better prepared with food and drink for the trip - and plan ahead better.. ;-)

Monday, 1 August 2011

Möja and dinner

The weather finally cleared and we were back sailing, but after a few days at sea it was time to stock up the larder.  We headed back inshore to the nearest and best - stopping off in Lånviken on Möja for water and food.  But, we were tied up with a strong tail wind so we upped sticks and sailed around to the lee side and tied up in the small fishing harbour at Ramsmora (or more properly just in the entrance to).  

It was getting late by the time we tied up so we rang ahead to the fish restaurant up the hill to see that they were able to seat us....  and got the answer - if you come at once!  So we quickly threw everything below and pulled out some clean clothes for our first sit down dinner since Vindalsö.  And very nice it was too. 

Sunday, 31 July 2011

Playing tag

From Björkskär we head off in company in fresh northerlies beating towards Stora Nassa. Sunny and blowy... that's what we like.

We have a bit of trouble with the halyard when we hoisted sail so we end up playing catch up, but they have a quicker boat so we are forcrd to work on our pointing to keep up.

When we get there there are boats all over and we motor round... checking out a sheltered lagoon we'd picked out on the chart. Taken.

So finally we settle on nice sheltered cobb just west of the main sound. High cliffs and deep close in.

It proved not to be quite as good as we had hoped. As the wind got up it came round the bluff not giving as much lee as it promised. But enough at least.

The following day is still blowy and we set springs to offload the mooring lines. A quiet day with a book before a quiet night in in good company.

High cliff

Breakfast and away for a short reach over open water heading for Björkskär. The forecast is strong northerlies and we want a place with good shelter.
We arrive in good time and pick a spot in Hemsundet, close under a high cliff in time for a late lunch and a swim as we while away a sunny afternoon waiting for friends to join us... Explaining to the stream of boats coming in that that space is taken....
Still. All's well that ends well and it's not too long before we are sharing sundowners with the neighbours

Stocking up

Our first stop for the day is Möja Långvik, to stock up the larder. But first we have some light wind sailing to do... close haulee and beating into light easterlies.
Långvik i small, but has all the necessities. Just make sure you are out the way when the Cinderella boats come in.

From there we set off for the outer islands but it was soon apparent that the wind had gone.... So we motored instead to Tistonskär. After some chugging around we settled on a small skär.. Our own island :-) Just us and the mosquitos! Great views and a lovely sunset.


We sailed on to Träsköstorön on a fine sunny morning. Not a long trip and not hard one either. We anchored to a small headland, alongside another IF... a yellow boat called Vivo. We had just time to exchange pleasantries though before they were on teir way
It was anyway a pleasant spot and it wasn't long before we had new neighbours, including three Italians on holiday in a hire boat still learning how coming ashore works in Sweden...

Monday, 25 July 2011

In the Säck

From Stavsnäs we went in search of an anchorage... reaching over Kanholmsfjärden and turning in to weave among the islands... One by one we passed and crossed spots off the list. Too near to buildings. Too shallow, already taken....
In the end we settled.on a safe bet and motored in to Säck.. It was past seven already and well settled so we ended up squeezed in in the shallows. Still it was a safe spot on a blowy night..
We stayed on another night too as it continued to blow, rewarded by a fine sunny evening... perfect for the grill

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Just passing through

After a pleasant run from.Vindalsö we stopped in Stavsnäs to restock the larder. It seemed like rush hour when we got there with boats coming and going from the jetty and the fuel station.
Once we did get alongside it was out with the rubbish and off to the shops... And then lunch from the grill.. Tasty if not so nutritious... ;-)

Head winds

Our next stop is Vindalsö, to dine and dance with friends.
Discrrtion is the better part of valour, so with strong headwinds we chose the simpler route up Nämdöfjärden rather than pick our pay through the isles to get there. Even so we had three and a half hours with 16knot winds on the nose. On on the last hour did beats turn to reaches..
A really tiring leg.. but not so tiring that we weren't still dancing at 2 and relaxing in the sauna at first light...

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Lazy days

We set off after a lazy breakfast on an easy reach in bright sunshine. This time we really do expect strong winds in the night so when we passed a sheltered bay on Böteskobb it was too good to miss. Lunch, a swim, blög a little, and put the meat in to marinade.....

First night out

After a lazy lunch at the marina we set out late in the afternoon for a couple of hours aiming for Mortö Bunsön... But as we got near I checked the forecast on the mobile. Two completely different stories from two differebt sites. So we sailed on to Grönskär to find a spot that covered all eventualities. A good fast sail averaging over 5knots
And then we rounded off the evening with a grill and a sunset. What else?

Picture to follow...

Thursday, 14 July 2011

A step forward

One of the winter jobs was fitting a removable step on the bow.  Coming ashore is normally OK-but once in a while it's tricky for the crew to come ashore without a great leap of faith. 

The IF-båt is not that well suited for a step though - the bow is quite swept under which means that the strut from the step doesn't transfer all that much of the load to the hull... Most of the weight seems to be on the deck fittings.  The strut length makes a difference and the strut is adjustable - but not to any degree of finesse.  I tried drilling it but cutting a large hole in a curved tube without a pillar drill didn't really work.  So as a last resort I've added packing to the end, both to protect the hull and to lengthen it just a little.

Back on the boat it all seems to work in the marina - although the packing tends to move a bit under load so it is only partly doing it's job.  We''ll see how it goes when we get out to sea.....

Under a cloud

The homeward trip had the luxury of  a following wind - at least to start with and we made reasonable pace in modest winds under blue skies.

Too good to last you might think - and it was.  By half way home the weather over the land was threatening with trains of dark clouds skirting along just inshore of us.. getting closer and closer as rumbles of thunder echoed over the water.  We'd edge away towards the sunshine, only to lose the wind and fall back into the shadow.

After an hour of playing tag the clouds rolled overhead and the rain started...

...but by then the thunder had moved on and we just got a shower for ten minutes or so.  More annoying was that the wind died and to get us home we had to fire up the outboard. 

I've not been chased by a cloud before.....

25 June 2011
Sittuviken - Kalrslunds
Paul, Kia

Midsommar by sea

This year midsummer saw what's getting to be our traditional trip south to celebrate with friends out in the country.
The weather for the trip down was good - breezy, and maybe a bit too much on the nose for a quick sail but we set off with full sail and were soon close hauled and well heeled over on the leg out from Karlslunds. To keep us pointing we took the winch to the jibsheet to tighten it in - which proved not to be the best of plans. Not long after I noticed the leech was fluttering a lot - and a look behind the mainsail showed the genoa had split a seam. So down it came and the rest of the trip was beating with just the main...

24 June 2011
Karlslunds - Sittuviken
Paul, Kia

Sunday, 15 May 2011

All systems go...

Sjösättning.  The boat is back in the water... and thanks to an early Saturday morning slot we had time and the chance to get the mast up the same day.  All of which meant the chance of an evening out on the water over across to Ornö. 

The bay was perhaps unsurprisingly pretty deserted, and we anchored up on our favourite spot - a big rock about halfway along the northshore - and headed off to catch the sunset and grill supper.

Back in the cabin later it was time to try out the new heater - which worked fine.  Even with the hatch ajar to ventilate we could work up a good fug - and a lot easier to handle than the Wallas. At breakfast time we even tried it for making the tea.  A bit slower than the normal spirit stove but it got there...

In fact the only downside on the trip was finding that the leech is coming unstitched - I restitched a length during last season where the old stitching is falling apart.  Several seasons on the roller reefing is taking it's toll.  Now another section is giving up which meant an hour on the foredeck on Sunday morning to put it right.


14/15 May 2011
Karlslunds - Kolnäsviken (& back)
Paul, Pål, Kia

Friday, 13 May 2011

Thermal trials

Mata Hari came with a Wallas parafin heater installed.... .but over the years it has had very little use. To be sure to get it going at the start of the season you need to clean the points and that doesn't happen that often.
So this year we are trying something new - or rather, secondhand. An Origo HeatPal. Basically a meths burner in a tin. You can also use it as a stove if needed.
Today I set it going on the balcony - both to check it works and to see how safe it is to be around.
It was a bit slow to light but then burnt well and seems to push out plenty of heat. The case stays cool but the lid gets uncomfortably hot - except on the low setting. And turning it down to 0 doesn't extinguish it...
So... It could be just the thing to keep up cosy - with some care in positioning and remembering to keep the boat ventilated.
We will soon see....

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

In the cellar

The great day approaches... just a little too quickly as it happens, so there is frantic activity in the cellar to catch up with
the winter job list.
Maybe I
should have bought quick drying varnish?!