On our way
July 6, 2007
After several last-minute runs to the various stores, food, liquor, hardware, the flotilla was on its way.
The weather was cloudy and rainy, and there was quite a bit of wind, but nobody argued in favor of staying another day, so off we went at a little before noon. The first hour or so was most uncomfortable as 15 knots of wind on the beam pushed us around and made for hard work. We finally made our turning mark and turned south to the ?.land Islands. With the wind and waves not on our stern, we made good time, but I can't admit to enjoying the trip downwind and waves. We sometimes reached 19 knots surfing down a wave, and for a sailor, this was just too fast for me. Peter, however, was in his glory. Soon enough we turned into the protected waters of the archipelago and we settled down to a fast but comfortable trip to our first stop, the island of Jurmo. The marina there had room for only four of the boats, so the other three anchored in a quiet little cove just a short distance away. It was a lovely night, and I slept soundly.
July 7 we set off again for the next anchorage in our effort to see as much as we could of the ?.land Islands before we had to head for Sweden to try to make up some of the time we lost in waiting more than a month for our boats to arrive here.
Dick Tuschik on RHUMB LINE had spoken with a knowledgeable fellow in Jurmo who told him that there was a better and easier bay for our second night than what had originally been considered, and so we all agreed to head for R÷dhamn. Though a bit of a longer drive than the day before, it was all in sheltered waters and so was quite comfortable. I guess it should be noted that the water temperature hovers around 55?, and the wind is not warmer than that when there are clouds, as there have been these two days.
The trip to R÷dhamn was fairly long, maybe five hours, but what a lovely little island it was. We were all able to tie to the dock, albeit with a bit of juggling, and the cloud cover thinned so it was bright and warmer. The walk over to the little store and dockmaster's office is over the rocky hill. When we got there to pay for the night, we discovered lots of goodies. I bought a piece of Rhubarb cake (for me) and a piece of chocolate cake for Peter. I ordered fresh rolls for the next morning's breakfast, and when Peter walked over to meet me, he decided that he just had to buy some smoked fish, also available there. I told him to go in and buy it himself, and he did. A rather large whitefish. He brought it back to the boat and decided after a small taste that he didn't particularly like it after all. Too bad, if he doesn't want it for dinner, it will be there for his breakfast!
The sun is so far north that at this time of year the sky is always light. The sun "sets" at about 11 pm, but it just doesn't get dark. It means we can leave very early and still have the sun high in the sky and we don't REALLY have to rush to get in port, but it can make for very long days and not enough sleep for those of us unused to so much sunshine!
I'm not much of a photographer, so this is just an idea of what it was like climbing the rocks overlooking Rodhamn.