The Voyage of 'S/V Röde Orm' - Sweden

Come on board and take part in our adventures while exploring the world at the slow pace of a sailing boat. We left in June 2009, heading south to escape the northern winter... to start with. Currently in Algarve/Portugal taking it one day at a time.

13 September 2010
11 September 2010 | Nantes, Bretagne-France
07 September 2010 | Bretagne (or Normandie?)
02 September 2010 | still the same...
31 August 2010 | Rezè- Bretagne (boat in Rio Guadiana)
09 August 2010 | Rezé//Bretagne//France
18 July 2010 | Clisson/La Sèvre
15 July 2010 | Nantes/ Brittany
14 July 2010 | Nantes/Bretagne/France
25 June 2010 | Gamleby- Sweden
05 June 2010 | Mértola// Minas San Domingo
27 May 2010 | Alcoutim
24 May 2010 | of the River
21 May 2010 | Alcoutim/Sanlucar
21 May 2010 | Alcoutim/Sanlucar
16 May 2010 | Alcoutim
10 May 2010 | Alcoutim/Sanlucar
30 April 2010 | Alcoutim-PT// Sanlucar- ES
24 April 2010 | Ayamonte - Andalucia - Spain

27 July 2007
15 July
Continuous raining until 5pm. Quite hard winds too. Its weird, it just occurred to me that this far, I
have had to reef the main just once. The couple of gales I ve seen has been spent tied up to a dock.
Ornskoldsvik held the first winter Paralympics Games in 1976. That initiative led to a fine
development curve for these competitions.
In the harbour there are two beautiful cranes. Very old, they look like something built with
'meccano'. Cute, and i got a photo of them.
16 July
Woke up with a bi smile on my face; the Sun is back. A fresh SW breeze let us run out f the bay and
then when we turned port, we got the wind on the beam and made a steady 6-7 knots. After being in
harbours and together with other boats for a while, it was a treat for my soul, to discover a nice and
sheltered anchorage, where I could spend the night in complete solitude.
17 July
The morning swim before breakfast felt great. Warm showers at harbour sure is a great thing, but it
doesnt beat the morning swim at sea. No long swim though, water temp. Being around 15 degrees
C. But refreshing.
I had an idea of taking the 60 M trip to Vaasa at the Finnish side of the sea of Botnia, but an easterly
wind got me to pstpne that trip. A fresh breeze made us glide along further north at the pace of 5-7
knots all day. More and more clouds gathered and just a few miles south of Umea Town, the wind
died out and it started to rain. Defintely a low pressure system on its way and bad weather coming
sooner rather than later. Yup, the forecast at 16pm warned for gale force SW winds and heavy
raining during the night and for tomorrow. I took a decision to go to Umea Sailing Societys club
harbour at the island of Obbola, just SW of the town. Provides god shelter from all winds except
perhaps E, and a very nice sauna with large windows facing the sea. My frozen limbs got to warm
up quite a while int that sauna, as the rain and wind battered the glass sections. After the sauna, a
short swim in the sea, and then a shower. The better part of the night was spent at the club-house
together with the harbour captain watching football on TV with a bear or two.
18 July
The rain went from permanent to heavy showers, and the wind became gusty. Signs of the center of
the low passing and the barometer starte to rise agian. In the afternoon a had a walk to the nearest
food store 2km away to restock a bit on perishables. Had a chat with a few other sailors in the
evening and read a while onboard.
19 July
I do not feel good today, like I have an infection or something. Decides to stay here another night.
The wind is still fresh to hard and from NW. Occassional showers and low temperature (14 C) does
not lighten me up. Perhaps a couple of aspirins will. I do some reading and in the afternoon I do
some ninor fixes on the boat. Whoever came up with the expression that cruising sailing is the
'equivalent of boat maintenance at exotic places' was right on the spot I guess. Even though I have a
sturdy boat equipped with simplicity as the guiding star, I do get my share of failures.
A battery charger- when at shore power- not more than a year and a half old, and used very
infrequently, apparently gave up n me today. Why is everything boat-related of such poor quality?
The pricing of this kind of stuff does definetely not indicate it.
20 July
I woke up early with a wish to get underway. The restlessness that gets me after a couple of nights
at the same harbour or ancorage.
Cloudy,and not too warm. A very light breeze made sailing possible, and we slowly made way
further north. 3 knots at least, sometimes 4-5. In the afternoon, when we were running dead before
the wind, I made an experiment. Took the main down and hoisted anther light wind genua. With
those two we made decent speed, just a little bit less than under spinnaker. The nice thing with the
ketch rig, is that there are always options. Another great thing about the ketch is how easy it is to
heave to. When I want to literaly parkthe boat I justr do as follows:
I steer downwind, and then walk up on the foredeck and take the foresail down. By that time the
boat will have rounded up nicely by itself, and I now take the mainsail down and belay it on the
boom. With the mizzen sheeted in the boat just lies there, very comfortably and pointing 45 degrees
to the wind. Great. Havent had the possibility to try it in winds over 25 knots yet, but that will
come sooner rather than later.
The harbour for the night is Ratan. In the late 18:th century it was ne of the most important export
harbours for Sweden. They had custom officials, pilots here all due to its natural protection against
preailing winds. The harbour is in a narrow sound betwen the mainland and an islet, half a mile
At this time people were aware of the fact that the water appeared to withdraw from the sea each
year. (Today, we know that the land is still rising, as an effect of the latest ice period that ended
10000 years ago.) Anyway they constructed some smart equipment to make regular measurements
of the 'water loss'. This occupied among others the two top scientists of the country at the time.
Anders Celsius and Carl Linnus (later von Linn). They believed that the seas were slowly
Here at Ratan at 1809, the most blood-shedding battle on Swedish soil took place. Over 3500
thousand men met there death here when Swedish navy, infantry and artillery fought their Russian
counterparts. This battle, despite the fact that Sweden 'won' marked and end of the superpower
ambitions of the country, and at the piece treaty we lost Finland and Aland to Russia. A few years
before, all swedish-controled land in Poland and Germany was lost. France and Russia were nw the
dominants of Europe.
Strangely enough I cannot recall that we learnt anything of this at school. Even though I was born in
the North, I have never heard this interesting history of Ratan.
22 July
Stayed here at Ratan, after a bad night with fever and stomach problems. Decided it was time to do
the laundry. A chore, rarely done during shorter sailing vacations. Naturally, shower every hour or
so made me busy hanging the laundry to dry in the rigging, and then taking it down etc. repeated a
few times.
23 July
Today a historical event took place. First i crossed the 64-th degree north for the first time on my
own keel,then the vessel log passed 1000 miles since I took off June 4. The distance however, if I
had gone the shortest way here, would not have been more than around 650 miles.
Vessel Name: Röde Orm
Vessel Make/Model: Laurin 32 ketch built in 1965
Hailing Port: Falsterbo -Sweden
Crew: Magnus & Isabelle
MAGNUS, Swedish skipper. Navigation teacher and a Commercial Yachtmaster. After many years of dreaming, recently sold off his business since over 20 years. Left swedish waters in June 2009 and hasn't yet looked back ISABELLE, Born in Brittany/France & First Mate. [...]
During 2008 we cruised during two and a half months in the Baltic Sea as covered in the older posts on this blog together with Magnus's 2007 cruise to 66 degrees North in the Baltic Sea. During this spring of 2009 we completed an extensive exterior refit of Röde Orm, and untied the docking [...]
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Röde Orm's Photos -

Who: Magnus & Isabelle
Port: Falsterbo -Sweden