26 May 2018
24 May 2018 | Helsinor
23 May 2018
22 May 2018 | Hundested
21 May 2018 | Sejero
20 May 2018 | Aebelo
19 May 2018 | Middelfart
15 May 2018 | Soenderburg
13 May 2018 | Laboe
11 May 2018 | Kiel Canal
09 May 2018 | Cuxhaven
07 May 2018 | Den Helder
06 April 2018 | Ipswich
16 March 2018 | London
24 September 2017 | London
28 May 2017
27 May 2017 | SW of Flores, Azores
26 May 2017 | Mid Atlantic
25 May 2017 | Mid Atlantic
24 May 2017 | Mid Atlantic

Picasso Ceramics

26 May 2018
A short bike ride south, this time on National Route 9, took us to the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. It was the last weekend of a very successful exhibition of Picasso’s Ceramics, and we were lucky to catch this. The museum and grounds on the bank of the Örosund were beautiful and we spent a pleasant day there, including a lovely buffet lunch featuring delicious smoked scallops.

Hamlet’s Castle

24 May 2018 | Helsinor
Another great and sunny sail today, to reach a large marina in Helsinor next to Kronburg Castle, the inspiration for Hamlet’s Elsinore. After the rather dull towns we have visited this week, this looks to be a lot more interesting, and large enough to absorb the cruise ship hordes.

The castle is situated on the narrowest part of the Örusund, the busy channel between Denmark and Sweden. The wealth of the town grew over the 200 years during which the Danish kings charged a levy for every ship that passed through.

We may stay a few days and visit Copenhagen from here. It's an easy 40 minutes on the train, probably easier than sailing into Copenhagen itself.

A Long Bike Ride

23 May 2018
After three days’ consecutive sailing, we felt it was time for a day off the boat and some exercise. Regional Cycle Route 40 passed through the town, so it was an easy choice. The loop started with a ferry ride, shared with a rather large tractor. The next 15 miles was on a dirt track through a dense beech forest- interesting for the first 10! Then we crossed back across the fiord on a busy bridge to a rather boring town for lunch. The ride back was a mixture of quiet suburban lanes and excellent cycle tracks alongside main roads.

Denmark really has got it's cycling infrastructure sorted; so much better than in the UK.

About 40 miles in total. Barrie's OK but I'm exhausted!

Back on the Mainland

22 May 2018 | Hundested
At last! We managed to sail for most of today, tacking out to the headland, and back on the opposite tack. We are in Hundested, a much larger and busier harbour than Sejero, and again used by a mixture of commercial and pleasure craft. It's all a bit of a muddle, but we just fitted in at the end of an alongside berth.

We like the visitor payment system in Denmark. Every marina and harbour so far has had a ticket machine, fortunately with a button to press for 'English'. You enter your boat length and credit card. The machine dispenses a card loaded with a few kroner that gives access to the facilities and the electricity box, and a label to display on the boat. Before you leave you return the card and get a refund for the amount not used. And we still haven't paid more than £20 a night!

Plenty of Room

21 May 2018 | Sejero
Another day of motoring into wind- and more than was forecast, so it was quite choppy. We arrived as planned at the only port on the small island of Sejero. The harbour had different sections for the ferry, the fishing fleet and yachts, and looked small on the chart. We were worried there might not be room for us, as we didn't have a plan B, but as you can see there wasn't a problem! The box berths were way to narrow for us, but we had the new quay all to ourselves.

We arrived in time for a cycle to the lighthouse at the northern tip of the island, about six miles of gentle hills and quiet roads. All very lovely. The island felt quite remote despite being not that far from the mainland.

And an even nicer anchorage!

20 May 2018 | Aebelo
We spent the night at anchor in the shelter of Aebelo, a small uninhabited island at the very north of Fyn. It was a bank holiday weekend- traditional Whitsun- so we weren’t alone, but there was plenty of room. We nudged in as close as we dare, and anchored in just 3 metres.

A Lovely Marina

19 May 2018 | Middelfart
The hardest part of passage planning in Denmark is the huge amount of choice! Every small town has a marina, and there are also fishing harbours and anchorages. We are trying to average about 25 miles a day, leaving early and arriving at our chosen destination with time to explore, and maybe a late lunch ashore.

Today we are in a marina at Middelfart, an easy name to remember. In the Baltic most berths are box moorings, which involves lassoing posts on the way in, then tying up close enough to the pontoon to be able to climb off over the bow. This was our first experience and it went well, thanks to U-tube videos, forward planning with the lines, and no wind! It was rather tight however with only a few centimetres clear between us and the posts. Getting jammed would have been embarrassing. Yarona is a big boat for round here. The marina is attractive, the facilities are spotless, and it's cheap- about £20 a night.

U-995

13 May 2018 | Laboe
Exiting the Canal was another anti-climax. We had to wait about an hour for two cargo ships to be locked in, then we entered the lock with just six other yachts. We tied up, and ten minutes later the gates opened and we had arrived- the Baltic! We headed for the marina at Laboe, a holiday town a few miles from Kiel.

We stayed two nights, and had the first excursion of the year on our bikes, recovered from below our double bunk. They will probably remain on deck for the rest of the summer. We had a pleasant cycle along the coast, and had a look round the German submarine U-995. It was enormous! At the end of the war it had been surrendered to Norway, who later presented it back to Germany for renovation and display as a museum. It was hard to imagine what life under the sea must have been like for the crew.


A Very Big Canal

11 May 2018 | Kiel Canal
The Kiel Canal was easy! At 65 miles long, it could be motored through in a day, but we decided to stop half way. There were only a few allowable options for this, and we were delighted with our choice- a mile up a side canal tied to a pontoon just before some lock gates. This part of Germany had been disputed with Denmark from the 1600’s on, and was finally won from Denmark in 1864. Now however it is incredibly peaceful. Maybe we should have spent the last ten years canal boating?

Back in the main canal, a large ship passed us every half hour or so. The canal was really wide, and there was really no stress.






Outside the Freisen Islands

09 May 2018 | Cuxhaven
It is possible to sail inside the islands, but four metre tides and shifting sandbanks makes this a challenge, even with a good chart plotter. So we opted for another overnight passage, mainly motoring in light winds on the nose. The bill to fill up the tanks when we arrived in Cuxhaven was €250- ouch!

A never ending stream of big ships trundled north on our port side, which was fine until they broke away to head in front and behind us into the Jade. Barrie was asleep below and I have never been so glad of AIS! The screenshot shows the problem...

Cuxhaven is Germany's biggest seaside resort, but isn't very exciting. However, the marina was excellent and good value, so we stayed two nights, and spent a day finishing off some of the minor jobs we hadn't got around to doing over the winter.

A gentle motor across the North Sea

07 May 2018 | Den Helder
We made the most of a rare period of light wind for an overnight passage from the Orwell to Den Helder in the Netherlands- much easier than hopping up the French and Belgium Coast. The sea was almost as calm as this Dutch canal! The only stress was a mystery throbbing noise that started in the forepeak and got steadily louder- until we realised it was the giant rig a mile away drilling piles into the seabed. We timed the tide well for an easy entrance into the Navy Marina, and stretched our legs round the town before settling down for a good night's sleep.
Vessel Name: Yarona
Vessel Make/Model: Hallberg Rassy, HR43
Hailing Port: Lancaster, UK
Crew: Barrie and Kath Stott
About:
We came late to sailing in 2001, first on flotilla holidays then on various courses and "mile builders". By 2008 we had a plan, blew caution to the wind, downsized our home and sold our business. We bought Yarona and lived on board for six months each year, sailing in Scotland and then the Med. [...]
Extra: Yarona was launched in 2003. She had already done a circumnavigation when we bought her. We believe her to be the perfect yacht for a live-aboard couple. She is safe at sea and comfortable at anchor. She is our first boat, and probably our last!
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