Spring 2014 Cruise Stralsund (D) - The Netherlands

One year, into owning Lady Rover, it's time to set sails again.

 

My first longer single handed trip, I took a leisurely pace. After departure number one, I was forced back, a vital part of the outboard slide had broken off.

I reluctantly turned back, but I was nice to have a chance to wave my good friend Michael good bye who was heading to Norway for his summer cruise.

Dänholms network of friendly souls was there to fix everything. Great!

 

The first part took me then to Nysted in Denmark and on to Roedby.

 

Of Fehmarn I encountered serious fog and it was no fun to realise that I could not see any ships (which were doing 15kn and more) plowing through the white cloudiness.
In Kiel I was greeted by my uncle and aunt who were both very helpful when I decided to fix an AIS system before heading for the third time through the famous canal. This time single handed.

 

All went well, big fenders help a lot!

 

To be continued below....

 

Visit the sightseeing tower in Barhoeft. Its well worth it!
Visit the sightseeing tower in Barhoeft. Its well worth it!

Having reached Cuxhaven and its famous Amerikahafen, I was greeted by the very friendly harbourmaster.

 

He was struck by bad and good luck shortly after each other. Loosing a keyring with all important keys into the murky harbourwaters was the bad luck, suggesting a strong magnet to solve the issue was the good luck sparked by me.

 

He was not the only happy person though.

After a Facebook appeal to my friends I received not only a 6 year old Notebook from Fritz for free as Lady Rovers new onboard Computer but also numerous great books and suggestions for my trip through the Wattensee.

 

Awesome Fritz, many many thanks!!!!!!

 

Newly equipped I left for the first Watten Island "Wangerooge". Once the fog had cleared, I was sailing with a lot of current and 10kn winds towards the German bight.

Always keeping clear of some of the biggest commercial ships I have ever seen in real life.

 

South of the giant SWATH Pilot ship "German Bight" I hoped to pass into the tidal waters of the Wattensee. Still there was a huuuuge black cloud waiting for me before. I reduced sail to the second reef and took in the genoa. The thundersqual hit us right on, despite giving the impression it would pass South of us. The moment I started smiling it changed course....

Now chartplotter and AIS prooved very helpful in avoiding ships and island shores.

Torrential rain hit us and I got really worried that night would fall before we would reach the protected waters at the east end of Wangerooge.

 

About 45min before nightfall I crossed the so called "Balje" a connection between the open North Sea and the Waddensee. Pew, was I happy to see about 15 other boats ready to fall dry.

 

To be continued below....

 

Watt panorama 01
Watt panorama 01
Watt panorama 02
Watt panorama 02

Falling dry was just the right thing tonight. I dropped the anchor and about 2 hours later I felt for a few minutes how my trusty sailboat took a rest on the ocean floor. Then quiet tranquility and a good uneventfull night sleep followed in due course.

 

Now I was huging the inside of the so called Frisian Island chain.

 

All these islands sport magnificant beaches on the North side and lush salt marshes on their South side. Still they all have very individual characters.

 

  1. Wangerooge
    Is first on the eastern Frisian Island chain. A lot was destroyed during the second world war, as their was an important German airfield based here.

  2. Spiekeroog
    Is by far my favourite, very green, friendly people and good food.

  3. Langeooge
    Has a huge harbour and due to my bad manouverability (small single engine off center) I decided to anchor on the part which dries out.
    While all was fine during the day when I was dried out, the the winds shifted right onto the harbour entrance with a force7-8 and big waves.
    I had to move. Once the anchor was up it was naturally pitch black night and I tried to anchor again further in. Still the mud was to soft and I almost ended up on the concrete ferry pier.
    When the anchor finally caught ground I was helped in by the DGzRS rescue boat. Luckily all they needed to do was put their big searchlight to work for me and provide some extra fenders.
    Thanks so much.
    For the next few days it was howling!

 

  1. Baltrum
    I had to give a miss, but I will come and visit one day. Promised.

  2. Norderney
    The glitzy island. A very well sheltered harbour which is usually quite busy. In summer the party island. I liked its museum on the development of a sea resort and the town concert.

  3. Juist
    Biiiig beaches with a personal touch, my grandma was a sports teacher on these beaches many many years ago. It felt so nice to step into her shoes for a moment.

  4. Borkum
    As last of the German islands it has seen better times but has some very pretty nature reserves to the north and south. Still I had a nice evening looking at the sunset while eating a pizza..

 

To be continued below....

 

We just made it. Shortly after hours of rainstorm with lots of Bft's on top.
We just made it. Shortly after hours of rainstorm with lots of Bft's on top.

Holland, at last!

 

After going briefly aground just outside of Borkum harbour (typical single hander mistake, the autopilot was on, but I misjugded the current) I motorsailed towards Lauwersoog. Here Eugen joined me after a loong 9hours drive from Nuremberg. Time for some well deserved fish, chips & beer.

 

The next day we head towards Ameland in a 5Bft wind. Not bad for a first time sailor on his first sail on Lady Rover. Eugen is impressed and smiles even as we reach the island.

Lucky me, an 10hour gale hits us about 30min after we have savely tied up in port.

The next day is perfect though and we explore this very pretty island by tandem.

 

Now its only a  short sail for me, to get to my new pitoresque homeport.

 

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