Winter parking on the hard

Hello again! Long time no writing. It is mid-winter in Sweden, and Isabell is sitting on dry land until the beginning of May 2022. Winter jobs planned for are to install the Lofrans Project 1000 X2 anchor winch that is sitting in my storage at home. I also have to order a new pulpit from Hallberg Rassy, since the one I have now is crushed on the starboard side. I am planning to split the anchor locker box top in two parts, to be able to open it while the anchor winch is pulling upp the chain. Other than that the boat is in good shape. Time for Isabell to take a rest. Soon to be ready for another season of fun sailing.

Two nights at Lickershamn – walking paths

Yesterday I cruised north to the small harbor of Lickershamn. From here you can walk along the edge of the 90-foot calcarous cliffs on a footpath that goes a long way, both south and north. It is called the Kustklintleden, well marked and easy to navigate. Sometimes it goes up or down rather steep. Today, I walked south for 10 km, and then back to the boat. Halfway along the path, I passed a young couple pushing/pulling a toddler stroller along. Can they, so can I!!! LOL.
It took a better part of the day. The weather was good, winds SW 5-10 msec, sunny and warm (28°C). My feet needed cooling when I got back on board. So I put them in a bucket of cold seawater. Felt better… Tomorrow the winds will be low, but I intend to sail into the sound between Faroy (Fårö) and Gotland. The ultimate plan is to meet with my daughter and grandchild and sail together. The first time for my granddaughter to sail. She is used to travel to and fro this island by ferryboat. And they are huge. So when she came and had a look at Isabell, she said I live on a very (VERY) small boat. Yepp, everything is relative. It was a good stay here at Lickershamn. A lot of good has happened since I was here 2017 with Monica, on our way down to Poland.

Still in Flundreviken

Hello, today the wind is shifting towards the south. Yesterday was very rainy, and the wind northeasterly. Not good for having to sail that way. I decided to stay another day at Flundreviken and give it some time. Right now, the sun came back out from behind the clouds and it is windy.
This harbour has been nice. Friendly local people and a homy atmosphere. Close enough to the walled city of Visby, yet far enough to be out of the mainstream. Harbour fees are similar to the fees in Visby, but much more relaxed atmosphere here. There is water and electricity on the jetty, but no other facilities.
Today, it may be a good day to sail to Lickershamn, not too far north of here. We’ll see. Until then! Cheers!

Visby, Gotland after a great sail

Hello again, I am now in the small harbour of Flundreviken, about 3 nm north of Visby harbour. The sailing across between saturday and monday was great. Enough wind most of the time, and hardly any waves to make the trip more of a job. A beautiful sunset and likewise a fantastic sunrise a few hours later. As I was approaching the island of Gotland, it was completely enclosed by a heavy white fog-cloud. Where I was the sun was shining and the sea was smooth. The closer I got to shore, the more of the fog disappeared. And there I saw it, the white calcarous cliffs of the high western shore. Sailing into this little harbour went well, mostly because I knew where to find the narrow entrance. Now I have been here a couple of days and enjoyed visiting with my daughter and her family. She lives here in Visby, year-round. Isabell is in good shape. No worries. Here it is great to have my folding bike out. Super to just bike around and enjoy the countryside.

Tomorrow I will probably start sailing north toward the lesser island of Fårö, just north of Gotland. Right now the birds are singing and folks are polishing and fixing with their boats (mostly small motor boats). The whole trip here took a total of 28 hours sailing, and the made distance was 46 nm from Bullandö marina to Landsort. Across the Baltic it was another 74 nm. Not so far away from home, so to speak. Well worth the trip.

Getting ready for Gotland

Where am I now? Läskär, just north of the island Öja, the most southern point in the Stockholm archipelago. Yesterday, warm sunny and a little northeasterly wind. In eleven hours I slowly made my way south. Real relaxed holiday sailing. Now I have time to rest, read and prepare for night sailing. I will get on my way late this afternoon, so that I get to Visby in the daytime tomorrow. Winds are reasonably low, from northeast to southeast. More easterly the closer I get to Gotland. Right now it is sunny and warm, but it may rain on the way. We will see… Maybe next message is from Gotland.

Sailing again

My holidays have started and I have prepared for some serious sailing. Food, water, clothing and gear stowed. Bike on board and the dinghy on deck. Tomorrow I will get the diesel tank filled up and going south. First destination is Landsort. Then to Gotland, Visby. Weather is good. Goodnight after an evening out with Monsun owners Kristina and Thomas of Puffin. Thanks again!

2021 sailing season has begun

On Friday the 23th of April Isabell was back in the lake at Rastaholm. After a short period of fine spring weather we are back to snowfall and coldness. Nevertheless, Isabell is afloat and ready for another sailing season. In the weekend of the 30th April – 2 May the mast is back in place, and the boat stocked up with food, water and warm clothes. Soon will take her out to the seaside. Now with new rigging details and shiny new Lewmar 40 ST winches for the genua. The rudder repair was successful, no more clonking sounds from the rudder hinges. Looking through my old logbooks I concluded that I have sailed Isabell halfway around the equator (11 500 nautical miles) since I bought her in 2008. Let’s hope for many more miles of sailing fun!

Easter holidays boat fixing

And it is finally time to start prepping Isabell for another boating season. Easter weekend is usually the time to take off the winter shelter and start fixing things on board. The weather so far has been great. On last Thursday I removed the cover from the deck. Since, the new rudder hinge has been put in place. It will still need some polyester work, but the hinge is good. I had bought solid round bronze bars with a 25 mm diameter, that fit perfectly into the bronze hinges. Then I removed the anchor rolling mechanism from the bow and bent it back into its original shape. This was necessary after the collision with a pole in Lemmer, last summer. Started removing loose paint on the underwater body. Will get out the old vacuum cleaner and sanding machine to polish off the old antifouling paint (P60-80 grain sandpaper). After that is done, the primer is put on to finish off with one or two thin layers of hard antifouling. Have to wait until it gets a bit warmer outside. In the meantime, I will install two new genua sheet winches. Almost like the original Lewmar 40’s, only the new ones are selftailing, Lewmar 40ST ocean chrome-bronze winches. They fit nicely on the same holes as the old winches had.
Replaced a few rigging details, and invested in a new decklight, now all the lights are LED-type. The rest of the boat is in rather good shape. Maintenance on the engine is ready, already done in the fall 2020. Looking forward to a great new boating season! Happy Easter!

Date set for 2021 launching

Winter is slowly loosing its grip on the countryside. The sun is starting to warm a little more every day, and the snow is almost all gone. Still frozen on the lake, but more open water for each day that passed. I was at the boat yard this past weekend and have taken off the lower hinge shoe of the rudder. Will order a replacement for the bronze hinge pin, that is fairly worn down. It measures 66 mm and with a starting diameter of 25 mm. I will order a new pin with outher diameter of 25,5 mm to adjust for wearing of the shoe.

The date for launching is set to 23 April 2021. So, a good seven weeks to get Isabell ready to go back in the water. Looking forwards to it!

Winter tasks for a rainy day

Hello again! During the past few weeks I have done some winter tasks. Outside it is grey and mostly dark. Fantastic weather to sit inside and write about precious memories and experiences that may be useful to other sailors. At first I wrote an article about the experience of taking a sailboat across the Netherlands via the standing mast route, in Swedish. In the Swedish language very little decent information is available on this topic. Apart from a number of sailing blogs of folks that have actually made the passage, nothing is available in Swedish. So the article was my number one priority. It can be found on the Sailing Isabell website under the little Swedish flag.

The second article I just finished is about taking a sailboat through the Kiel canal, or the Nord- Ostsee Kanal (NOK) in northern Germany. Also in Swedish, since information is available in German, Dutch, and English, but lacking in Swedish. It was fun to do, since taking me through the NOK memories to remember what was essential, also brought about this enormous sense of joy. It was fun to take this route through the Kiel canal during the past summer. Also this article is available on the website under the little Swedish flag.
Apart from all that, I have been cleaning and fixing details that belong to the Isabell rigging. Since the mast is down this winter, I have the possibility to look over all the rigging details. Checking and replacing the worn parts. So that come Spring the rigging is good for another 4 or 5 years with the mast standing.

We have now made it through all of 2020, a very special year, and ready to meet the coming year with new plans and energy. Let’s hope it will be a good year.