John & Bernie Go Cruising

The Crew

Who: John & Bernie Warren
08 February 2014 | Aghios Nikalaos
14 September 2013 | Sitia, Crete
17 February 2011 | Thornbury, Gloucestershire
19 September 2010
18 June 2010 | Thira (Santorini)
26 May 2010 | Milos, Cyclades
15 May 2010
15 May 2010
08 March 2010
02 November 2009
02 November 2009 | Preveza
30 September 2009 | Nidri, Levkas
24 September 2009 | Fiskardo - Cephalonia

A short season, beset with problems.

08 February 2014 | Aghios Nikalaos
Let me begin with a tribute to our friend Dave of Manana. Dave died unexpectedly at the end of November and the photograph accompanying this post shows Manana "Dressed" in honour of Phillipas Birthday while we were anchored in Spinalonga Lagoon.

After getting Kerenne repaired following 3 years on a cradle we left Aghios and headed East. After calling at Sitia and Kasos we arrived in Karpathos where we anchored in the Southern bays with friends Dave and Philippa on board Manana. After going ashore for Bernies birthday we headed out towards Pigadhia and found that we were pumping sea water through the engine fresh water system. We had the heat exchanger removed and "repaired" and then we set off again back to the South of Karpathos and on to the anchorage of Helatros at the Southern tip of Kasos. We left here next day to return to Sitia with a strengthening wind and spent the next 6 days tied up inside Sitia with strong winds blowing down into the bay.

At last we were able to leave Sitia and made our way to the lagoon at Spinalonga, only for the heat exchanger to start passing sea water again. After limping back to the marina in Aghios Nikalaos the whole thing was stripped down again and several leaking tubes plugged. On replacement though it was found that the exhaust outlet elbow and water injection point had corroded causing sufficient back pressure to displace the heat exchanger tube assembly. This has now been replaced by a new stainless steel unit.

We decided to buy a new suit of sails and ordered these for delivery in the spring and prepared Kerenne for her winter sleep. just as we were preparing to leave Bernie noticed water in the forecabin sole and it turned out that the water tank was moving around within it's framework and had started to leak. This is being replaced over the winter with a stainless steel tank.

And finally, if these troubles weren't enough, John somehow twisted his knee while we were stormbound in Sitia and wasn't able to play golf when we got back to Bristol. Also after Dave and Phillipa visited us a few days after we got back to Bristol we received a phone call from a distraught Phillipa at the end of November to say that Dave had died!

We spent a total of 8 weeks aboard Kerenne with just 4 weeks out of the marina and only 12 days at sea! We now start to plan for 2014 and are considering returning Kerenne to the Ionian where we will keep her for the foreseeable future. We will probably put her back up for sale and see what happens as the market shows some initial signs of recovery.

Here we go again.......

14 September 2013 | Sitia, Crete
Hi everyone. Following the death of Johns mum and Kerenne not being sold we are once again sailing the Mediterranean.

After a few hiccups with problems with the boat we set off from Aghios Nikolaos to spend the night anchored in Spinalonga Lagoon. We are now tied up alongside the harbour wall in Sitia waiting for a few days of strong winds to blow through before moving off to explore the islands of the Dodecanese.

Kerenne has regrettably been put up for sale.....

07 June 2011
We have decided after much thought and deliberation that it is time to sell Kerenne. Due to family illness we are not sailing in 2011 and even if we return in 2012 it will be almost 2 years since we have been aboard Kerenne. It is with reluctance that we have made this decision but feel it is the right one to make at this time. Our thoughts go out to all our sailing friends and others who have sailed with us via this blog and we wish all of you fair winds for the future.
We hope to keep in touch with many of you as the years go by and we will probably sail again in the future - but on charter boats as part of longer holidays. As a final image we have included the photo of one of our favourite anchorages - Skoihnos on Ithaka
Best wishes to all who have read this blog in the past and good luck.
John and Bernie

2011 - No sailing this year

17 February 2011 | Thornbury, Gloucestershire
John & Bernie (Kerenne)
Regrettably due to continuing family illness John and Bernie will not be sailing in 2011. Kerenne will remain laid up in Crete thanks to the understanding of the staff at the marina - they initially said they were full when approached for winter lay up early in 2010. We wish all our friends good luck and fair winds during their sailing this year.

The photograph shows Johns family who congregated in our house for Christmas

Autumn Cruise Cancelled.

19 September 2010
After lifting Kerenne out for the summer we flew home to the UK. Unfortunately we are unable to return for our planned Autumn Cruise due to family illness. We have managed to arrange for Kerenne to remain in Aghios Nikolaos, Crete for the winter. We intend a short visit some time in October to make full winter lay-up preparations and then look forward to returning again in Spring 2011.

Final Leg of Spring Cruise

28 June 2010
We have now moved to Crete and the marina at Aghios Nikolaos where Kerenne is to be left for the summer. From Thira we headed south to the small island of Dhia, lying about 5 nM north of Heraklion and the north coast of Crete. This delightful, if barren, island has 4 small bays on the south side providing shelter from winds from all directions except the south. In the bay we chose is a small cave (see below) that has been set up as a shrine with a number of crucifixes and photographs etc.

We planned on spending 2 nights here but at 11am the first morning a sudden Force 5 started blowing into the anchorage and we had to leave. As the winds increased we tried one of the other bays without success and decided to move on to Crete. After a further 30 minutes we found ourselves with 2 reefs in the main and no wind......

We motored on to the town of Khersonisos where we anchored off the town close to the harbour. This town is a bustling resort with hotels crammed together and restaurants hung over the sea on rusting steel struts. The following 2 photographs will give you some idea of what I'm talking about.

Worse was to come however, at about 11pm the discos started up at full volume and went on until 5am. Time to move on again.

Just north of Aghios Nikolaos is the large lagoon of Elounda. The island of Spinalonga with a Venetian Fortress and buildings (see title photo), which until 1957 were used as a Leper Colony, guards the entrance to the lagoon. Inside the lagoon is shelter from all directions in beautiful surroundings and we spent 5 days here before moving into the marina. We are now preparing the boat for lifting out after which we will fly home.

Around the Cyclades

18 June 2010 | Thira (Santorini)
After 4 days in Milos we said our farewells to Seigfried and Gudrun and headed off to explore the Cyclades. Our first stop was a superb secluded anchorage in the channel between Milos and it's adjacent islands. The first night here we had the place completely to ourselves but then next morning a large motor boat and another yacht came in. however they left later and we once again had the place to ourselves for a peaceful night.

We moved from here to Felogandros to a harbour giving shelter from the forecast strong SW winds. There were about 20 cats around the harbour and this photo show many of them waiting for titbits from the local fisherman.

From Felogandros we sailed to Ios and after a night at anchor went into the harbour for a few days and to have a meal out for Johns birthday. The ferries entering the harbour cause a large surge on the quay and one yacht suffered quite bad damage to their stern anchor while we were her. The photograph shows the harbour from the top of the Chora with one of the ferries coming into the bay.

From Ios we went to Naxos and some of the adjacent islands and then to Paros. After a few nights at anchor around Paros and back to Ios we have now arrived in Thira (more commonly known as Santorini). Here we have spent 2 days in the harbour while we have hired a car to explore the island. The title photo shows us in front of some of the fantastic houses at Oia - many of them built into the hillside as seen below.

Arrival in the Aegean

26 May 2010 | Milos, Cyclades
After 2 nights in Kalamata Marina we have moved around the bottom of the Peloponnisos and into the Aegean. Having sailed for about half of the 3 days after Kalamata we set out towards Cap Malea, renowned for strong winds, at 4:30 am intent on rounding the cape and then sailing to Milos in the Cyclades Islands. As we left our anchorage with 12-15 knots of wind all looked good for the passage of 77 miles but within an hour the wind had died and we motored around the cape in a flat sea with no wind. From then on it was just a case of perseverance on the engine and 10 hours later we motored into the caldera of the volcanic island of Milos and across to the town harbour to tie up.

Here in Milos we have met Siegfried and Gudrun, our friends from our journeys of 2005 and 2006, who we haven't seen for almost 4 years. As expected this reunion has resulted in much tale telling and drinking of wine and beer. We have spent the last 2 days visiting the local attractions and getting together on each other's boats each evening for more wine and eating. However, soon we will part again as we continue our journey east and they move further west. But we will always stay friends and keep in touch by email and via this blog.

We will now be spending 4 weeks exploring the Cyclades before going south to Crete. On Crete we have a reservation at a marina in the NE of the island where Kerenne will be lifted ashore for storage while we fly home once more for the summer.

Photographs below show Bernie looking happy because the wind didn't blow strongly as predicted and the Milos caldera seen from the 'Castelli' above the Chora.


15 May 2010
As we left Navarinou we motored out under the castle at Pylos straight into a fog bank with visibility of approx. 200m. About 6 miles later the fog cleared as we neared the channel around Methoni which is marked by a prominent Venetian Castle and a later Turkish Fortress. However, just before we rounded the headland and prepared to take a photograph of the fortress the fog descended again and we lost all sight of land once more. Within another 30 minutes the fog cleared again and with a breeze building from the south we hoisted our sails and sailed the final few miles to Koroni. Here we are sheltering for a few days as gale force westerly winds are forecast for the next 3 days. Our Dutch friends are anchored close by and we hope to get ashore some time soon to visit another Venetian Castle built at the same time as that at Methoni. (A photograph will be posted later to show the castle/harbour as appropriate)

Update 16/05/10: We had winds from the WNW Force 7 - gusting Gale force 8 yesterday afternoon which sent a fair bit of chop into the harbour but nothing dangerous. Today we have been ashore and found that the old castle is now predominantly occupied by a lovely monastery. The title photograph shows a view of the monastery from one of the old castle towers. The photos below shows the remains of an old chapel beside the monastery and the anchorage viewed from the castle gate.

Navarinou and Pylos

15 May 2010
From Katakolon we moved on to Ormos Navarinou and the town of Pylos. The first 2 nights we anchored in the NW corner of the large bay and then moved across to see if there was space in the harbour at Pylos. The harbour has been largely taken over by local boats and is not very appealing so we anchored a short distance outside and went ashore in the dingy. The castle at Pylos dates back to the early 16th Century and stands above the town guarding the Southern entrance to Ormos Navarinou.

Ormos Navarinou itself is famous in Greek history as the place where the Turko- Egyptian fleet was defeated by a combined British, French and Russian fleet in a naval battle that led to the formation of Greece as an independent state.
Vessel Name: Kerenne
Vessel Make/Model: Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 37
Crew: John & Bernie Warren
We bought our Sun Odyssey 37 in December 2003 and retired in 2005 to go cruising. Setting off at the beginning of May 2005 we sailed from Plymouth to the Mediterranean via the coasts of France, Spain and Portugal. [...]
Extra: Apart from sailing our life revolves around our family (5 children between us, 5 Grandchildren so far......) and playing golf. We enjoy socializing with our sailing friends aboard "Kerenne" when we are away and friends and family when at home.
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Kerenne's Photos -

The Crew

Who: John & Bernie Warren