Saturday, 3 March 2018

MAPS AND PHOTOS


We will no longer be using Iridium Go and therefore tracking services will cease. I will however update our position on the map and produce an icon showing our latest anchorage position. The link to Vessel Finder below will also be pretty accurate. 

Monday, 17 July 2017

DANISH WATERWAYS AND PASSAGE TO NORWAY 17th July

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The 80 mile Limjforden Canal runs almost east west across the Danish countryside. It showed us just what it is capable of on this passage. The benign looking waterway comprises several shallow lakes intersected by narrow deeper navigation channels, joined together by narrow passes. It is deceptively tricky on the wrong day and its advisable to choose your weather for this route carefully. We set off westward from Hals motoring steadily to Aaborg. The head wind was up to around 30 knots. Inside the channel this wasn't too bad but once we poked our nose out into the wider expanse of water through which the navigation channel passes, it became less than pleasant, and in fact after two hours of hard motoring in counter current and into the increasingly gusty winds causing a short steep chop we struggled the 7 miles to Gjol. There the harbour master, Flemming had a couple of strong men on hand to take our lines. 
Gjol Marina

This marina has a very tight approach over shallow banks and most of the last half mile we had less than 6 inches of water under the keel. Taipan rolled and bucked and protested all the way there and the Limjfiorden won the day. In fact the next 2 days were so unpleasant we stayed and took the opportunity to catch up with Andrew and Christine again. They had just returned from their motoring adventure in Norway.  Gjol is an excellent small marina. Very reasonably priced at 129Dk and with free washers and driers and free power, the best wifi we have encountered in Europe. One of the major industries in this area of Denmark is Mink Farming. We saw beautiful farmland and amazing crops. only a few livestock and no mink, not even a mink coat!! From Gjol we progressed west to Limvig for a night and then with favourable conditions forecast we departed Denmark for Norway. 


Out the entrance at Thyborden and north for 36 hours to Stavanger on the west  coast. The conditions were pleasant if a little bumpy to start as the sea gradually died down so did the wind and we ended the passage with the motor and eventually no sails. Stavanger is an oil town. It is not terribly attractive in the approach but the town itself is quite charming. The old area has some fine examples of Norweigen architecture and cobbled streets complete the experience.

We tied up in the guest harbour right in the centre of town. The nightlife was fun and music and laughter filled the air until the wee small hours. Some say its too noisy here but we thoroughly enjoyed this spot. Two days later we moved out between the 3 huge cruise ships and sundry other tourist boats which had us squeezed into the corner of the harbour and headed inland up the fjords to the Lysefjorden. The 40nm trip was covered in the day in various weather. The Fjiord is spectacular. The evening saw us tied to the dock at Lysebotn. The end.
Lysefjord

 Working our way back the next day we stopped at Floyrii to wait for Tuuletar and her Australian owners Catherine Watts and Mark Pitman. Having been only WWS cyber acquaintances for some time we were keen to actually meet. It was a brief but fun catch up and we hope to meet them again soon.

Tuuletar

Floyrii

Floyrii is a hydro station. It was first built in 1914 to 16 and was to be the electric supply for a proposed steel mill. This project never got of the ground and after some years and financial difficulties it was eventually purchased by Stavanger and supplied power for the city. There is a cable railway with the longest wooden staircase in the world, at 4444 steps, adjacent to it. 

Intrepid hikers regularly take on the challenge and there were a steady stream of walkers arriving by ferry. There is no road into Floyrii. Meandering down the fjord during the afternoon we had alternating light but no rain and  so enjoyed the many waterfalls cascading from the mountain tops. Our anchorage in Foresand was the most spectacular location. Enhanced by the calm water and good light the reflections had us mesmerised.

Tuesday dawned raining hard and with no promise of any let up we decided to stay put.
Next we head to Hardanger Fjord and on to Bergen.



Saturday, 1 July 2017

SWEDEN AND ANOTHER CANAL July 1st


Helsingor to Varborg was a 70nm sail in reasonable conditions. Varborg marina was unremarkable but at least we managed to find an alongside mooring. Another pay machine! 

Away again in the morning to Goteborg. This proved a much longer leg than predicted as the wind switched to a “noserley” with velocity and we ended up doing more miles than predicted. The Goetborg marina proved the most expensive yet at 500Skr (Aussie $77) per night. We were asked to move the following day to make room for a 100 footer so we negotiated a better rate. At least Goetborg Marina was across the road from a large shopping centre and we were able to top up supplies during the 3 days we were forced to remain there because of strong wind and rain.
Bohus Castle

Out again into the River and north up the Alv in the Trollhatten Canal. The waterway is used by shipping and includes 6 locks in its 47 mile length. Four of these form a staircase at Trolhatten. The locks do require some  technique. There are bollards set into the wall at about 5 foot vertical intervals, and you must get a rope onto these. As you rise or fall, you put a second rope on the next bollard up or down, releasing the previous rope. The drop is too big to leave ropes in place. There is also the odd ladder, where you can use the rungs. The best thing on entering the lock is to aim for a ladder. With only 2 of us we found grabbing a ladder with a midship line gave us more possibility of gaining a forward or aft bollard. It was always stressful and we were lucky to have only one other boat in the lock with us for most of the locks. Once through the Trolhatten locks there is only one other lock before Lake Vanern, the largest lake in Sweden and in the EU. The third largest lake in Europe. 


We found a suitable anchorage and sat out some more foul weather for a couple of days. Less said about the lake the better! We had to decide  to stay a week or possibly longer to see the lake or cut our losses and scarper. With our Schengen time ticking we very reluctantly decided to backtrack and try to make it to some point from which we could jump off to Norway. So back down the waterway we went in unpleasant windy weather and made it that day to the Bohus Fortress to anchor. This fortification was originally on the Norwegian Swedish border. Work commenced on it on the early 1300s. It was besieged 14 times but never taken. The anchorage was small but snug with good holding.



The following day was harrowing in up to 40 knots. We just made it through the Gotenborg lifting bridge before it was closed due to high wind. We then went out to sea but were forced back to anchor in a tiny rock strewn bay just outside the shipping channel. Very pleased to be there however as the wind screamed and howled all night.  Morning dawned clearer, if not fine, so we elected to make the 65 mile dash west to Jutland Denmark and the Limjforden Canal to cross the peninsular to the western side with the hope of getting favourable winds to carry us north to Norway. The day fined up and a pleasant days sailing was enjoyed with a nice anchorage just outside Hals, Denmark.

Cottages are dotted on rocky islands along the  coast.
Next we cross the Danish Peninsular.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

COPENHAGEN AND NORTH TO SWEDEN. June 24th.

Unknown photographer shot this in Copenhagen and posted on Marine Traffic.

Now sitting aboard in Hals, a really small village in a pretty farming area at the mouth of the Limjforden in Denmark. Its been a bit of a journey and yes we did go to Copenhagen. 
View from the cockpit in the canal Ny Haven Copenhagen

Our arrival in Copenhagen was thankfully in lovely weather. A false start saw us tied to the wall in AmalieHaven, a large open dock area immediately in front of the Admiralty Hotel. Not an unpleasant place but decidedly busy on a Sunday. There was a lot of activity, music and parties, including swimming in the canal!. It seems that on a nice sunny day Danes bring their chairs to the city docks and sit, watch and get sun burned! 
We went ashore for a reconnoiter to the Ny Haven dock which was our preferred location and ascertained there was space so quickly returning  to Taipan we made the short hop to Ny Haven. Central downtown Copenhagen. We had been told the dock walls were very high but this proved to be incorrect and access ashore was easy enough. There's power and water available and a pay machine at the end of the dock which was happy to accept our card for 320Dkr per night. (About  Aussie $60) The guide books also say it is reserved for boats over 15 meters. There were smaller boats in there.
Rosenborg Castle

By chance we were befriended at the Rosenborg Castle early in our exploration, by Kirsten, a spritely older lady, who took it upon herself to show us the sights of Copenhagen. We walked the beautiful gardens of the Rosenborg Castle then wandered to Amalienborg Palace precinct, the home of the Dutch royal family including our Tasmanian Mary!  Next we visited The Round Tower, up which some Russian Czar reputedly rode his horse and which we climbed for a view of the city. Built in 1642 with an observatory in the top, it was built as the first part of a church complex bringing together  an astronomical observatory, a student church and a University library.
Round Tower

The following day we trekked to Christiania a 35ha piece of land, it is now an autonomous neighbourhood of Copenhagen. Established in 1971 by a group of squatters and harassed by police for years as they continued to squat in the disused military facilities. In 2011 it gained a sort of independence and is tolerated within the City. Heavily involved in the drug trade in Copenhagen there have been incidents of on going violence as the control of this market is wrestled from one biker group to another and the Christianites try to maintain some control of the situation.


Alas the time comes all to soon when we have to depart this lovely city and make our way north. Next stop Helsingoer  Splendid day for a sail and its only 25nm. The weather closing in again so its a forgone conclusion we will be stuck there for a day or two. The approach to the marina is guarded by the spectacular Renaissance Kronborg Castle. Our entrance to the marina was unremarkable in that we actually found a side too berth on the end of a hammerhead. The only kind we like. These bow-in, between pole jobbies are not a Taipan speciality! Safely tied alongside we immediately went to find the Pay Machine. Always such a disappointment then you arrive in a place to only find a machine.  These machines have no information and no friendly advice. They just take your money and spit out a tag. Scandanavia could certainly use a few lessons in marina management from Yacht Haven Phuket!!!

Kronborg Castle

Helsingor is a quite delightful town and luckily we visited on the evening of our arrival to dine in the main street because the following days were rainy and miserable. The excellent and award winning maritime museum designed by Bjarke Ingels Group opened in October 2013. It is situated in a disused dry dock.  Cunningly constructed to evoke shipboard sensibilities with unusual floor angles and construction enabling the transfer of sound as one would expect to hear aboard ship.  It has wonderful light and space. The exhibits were of a high standard and good interactive displays in English available. Kronborg Castle beckoned but we declined to visit the interior as all up the costs are quite high.  We must leave something to come back for.


Clear weather again but not a big window. Off to Sweden!

Friday, 16 June 2017

DENMARK. 16th June

Laboe to Sonderberg was just 35 miles in perfect conditions. The sea was flat and sun shining. A very snug little anchorage just south west of the city provided a good stopover. With marina prices in the AU$40 range we would just as soon anchor if the opportunity presents. We've still to recommission our 13 year old Mercury 15hp outboard and the new dingy hasn't had a wetting yet. 
The following morning we hopped the short leg to Sonderborg. Just 100m from where we tied Taipan on the City Dock the Sonderborg Castle presides over the entry to the straits between ALS and mainland Denmark. The Castle itself is over 800 years old and houses a museum. We wiled away several hours exploring its confines and brushing up on our Danish history. The Schleswig Holstein area has been contested for centuries by the Germans and Danish. Passions run high and blood has been let over these lands. Unfortunately most of the displays are in Danish but we did manage to get the general gist of it. Over the bridge and 3 km away upon the hill is a Windmill and site of the Battlefield Museum. Sonderborg is a small city of only 27 thousand inhabitants. The surrounding lands are extensively planted to wheat and barley which at this time of year is running to head. It will be harvested towards August There are surprisingly few livestock but most farms have huge barns. Perhaps the stock are housed inside??

Weather determines most of our moves here so with inclement weather approaching we decided to head 12 nm north up the straits to a small anchorage in Dyvig near Nordborg in northern Als. The entrance to the fully enclosed tiny harbour was very narrow. perhaps only 15 meters. There was plenty of depth but it was daunting nevertheless. Safely inside with never less than a meter under us we dropped the pick and settled in to enjoy the wildlife and lovely view. 
Dyvig Badhotel

Skinny entrance to Dyvig
Tucked into one corner of the harbour is a Marina and Hotel. The Dyvig Badehotel is a relatively new development built in 07. Its a 4 star hotel and caters to mostly German tourists. Opposite the hotel is another marina, Dyvig Yacht harbour. 

Next day was very windy with the odd shower so after some deliberation we decided to stay put and get the dingy off. The new Walker Bay Genesis 310 RIB was purchased second hand in Makkum and we know very little about it. Having launched it and recommissioned the outboard it was time to try it out. Well we are pretty impressed. It rides well and tracks better than the Swift. The Mercury pushes it up onto plane very quickly so all in all we are happy with the decision to trade in the ageing Swift.

With the dingy off, the following morning, we were able to make the short run ashore where we had a very nice cake and coffee at the hotel but we managed to resist the Grange Hermitage with a four figure price-tag.  There are pleasant walking trails around the bays and into Holm, just a kilometre away so we strolled the trails and exercised our boat bound bones. 
Aeroskobing

Fine again at last and Aeroskobing on the Island of Aero was our aim for the day. We took the scenic route inside a couple of islands as it was such a nice day and arrived at lunchtime after a pleasant 40 nm sail. A couple of hours walking in this picturesque little town was enough to see it all and with plenty of daylight and good weather we chose to up anchor and head on over to Stavoren to shorten the trip the next day.

Stavoren is a very picturesque city with a nice blend of old and new architecture. Its always a pity to pass places by but with the weather window closing again we anchored for the night in a beautiful bay overlooking the Tromse Yacht club and made a reasonably early get away towards Copenhagen. We wanted to be in Copenhagen before the weekend with the hope of getting a berth in the old harbour. 

This plan was foiled by the early onset of unfavourable wind and counter current so we pulled into a marina, there being no suitable anchorages for protection from the forecasted strong westerlies due overnight. Karrebaeksminde was the first marina into which we had to go between poles, dropping on lines as we passed by, jump off the bow and secure line at the front. Well the learning curve was steep again! The poles are all spaced at different distances apart and one has to judge the width. The first one we tried was too narrow so we had to reverse and try another. Luckily a fellow saw us bumbling about and came to catch our bow saving me from the life threatening leap off the bow. Taipan is definitely not designed for these marinas. There are only 4 berths, we found out later, in the whole marina wide enough for us. Anyway we tied up and were very glad to be there when the following day the wind gusted fairly consistently over 30 knots turning the entrance into a wash pool and the sea into a nasty mess.

This marina, we later discovered, labels the head of the pen with the width and price. They also place a red or green plate at the head to indicate wether the berth is vacant or not. There is no harbour master to give you any hints on the VHF, no fingers, no nice person to meet you, catch your lines and provide information. Just a pay machine and an admonishment to pay, or pay extra if they have to come and collect. Make mine anchoring!
The weather settled again and we left in the early afternoon with 45nm to go and a fairly stiff tail wind. A jaunty sail into the strait ensued with us making good time. During the afternoon the wind moderated and we slowed down an enjoyed the scenery passing between islands. Sjaelland, Falster and Moen. We dropped anchor off Moen with just 60nm to go to Copenhagen. It was a beautiful night and nice to be on the hook.

The next morning in a sludgy sea mist we approached the White Cliffs of Mons. We hoped to get the morning light on them and amazingly, just as we arrived the sun forced its way through the mist and behold! Beautiful White Cliffs.

Next stop Copenhagen.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

ONWARD TO THE BALTIC. 11th June.

Farewell Holland. 

Alas we must say farewell to The Netherlands and move more rapidly north towards the Baltic. We have enjoyed Holland immensely and have tarried a little too long . We had to get some diesel as we were leaving Makkum and a kind local yachtswoman used her card in exchange for Euros because our Australian cards are more often than not, unacceptable. Just a banking bureaucracy idiosyncrasy here in Holland. We were very grateful for the assistance and have found the Dutch to be extremely helpful and friendly throughout.
Kornwerderzand Lock
From Makkum there is just one final Lock to be negotiated before we bathe Taipan in salt water again. The Kornwerderzand Lock was hell busy. There seem to be endless long weekends here and everyone is out in their boat. We entered the lock with a great flotilla of yachts and small power boats and the usual jostling and positioning ensued. We are getting better at this and didn't make such fools of ourselves this time. The boats around us were very interested in our travels and a pleasant quarter hour was filled in chatting in the sunshine as the water did its up-down thing.  Out of the lock and after a pleasant 36nm sail along a somewhat tortuous route between sand banks, in a well marked but busy channel we dropped the anchor in Vlieland. 



Vlieland is just one of the many islands forming a 150 nm buffer to the Dutch and German north Coasts. There are extensive shallow sand banks between them and the coast, and it is a popular recreational boating area. Marinas are packed on weekends and this weekend was no exception.
Helgoland.

The next leg to Helgoland, a tiny speck in the German Bight, was 140nm. The long hours of light enabled us to sail the route in in Daylight. Arriving in Helgoland at 10pm to find a huge fleet of predominantly German yachts, rafted up as many as 10 deep in the small harbour.  The Bi Annual Race from Hamburg having just been run. Being a long weekend, racing was to be  conducted all weekend and getting in and out of the packages (big rafts of yachts) was conducted like a military manoeuvre and often..as  boats came and went. 
Helgoland. Isolated island in the German Bight.

The forecast came in and it was not looking good. Gales forecast for the next 4 days. We either leave the same day or stuck for 4 days. A hurried trip to a fantastic provider ashore for a boat load of duty free was necessary before we could leave. The provider delivered to the boat which was a bonus and did encourage a bit of an overspend but once again fully provisioned we headed back to sea for another 65nm run to Cruxhaven, a German port on the mouth of the Elb River. The big race from Helgoland to Edinburgh was starting as we left and Taipan was piped out of the harbour to the dulcet tones of Scottish bagpipes. Not enough wind to sail meant we had to use some of the new duty free diesel to make the marina before nightfall.


Cruxhaven Marina was basic and fairly expensive but we did stop and made an early getaway in the morning to make the Kiel Canal Lock before it became crowded. The lock was a fiasco because we were unprepared for the fact that one had to disembark to tie to a floating pontoon inside. The first of this type of locking arrangement. After some much appreciated help from the crew on a returning race boat we secured to the pontoon and waited. The water rose a mere half meter or so and then it was all over and we headed north in the Canal in a flotilla of yachts all going the only way possible.
Playing with the big kids in the Kiel Canal.

Rendsburg was our next stop. Tying alongside a jetty at the City Marina we were hardly secured before we were visited by a very grumpy harbour mistress telling us the jetty was reserved for boat 15m and above. Having politely informed her that we were 15M we were moved up the jetty a little way and allowed to stay. The alternative was between poles, bow too, on a low jetty. The width of the poles aft was scarily narrow and the jump from the bow to the dock formidable. Lucky we scraped in length wise. Well it rained cats n dogs for the next 2 days. We did eventually venture out to the supermarket for a fairly major provisioning run, given that we had been warned that everything in Sweden, Denmark and Norway is poisonously expensive. 

Rendsburg Marina.

The gloom became less wet and we'd had enough of Rendsburg so we dragged ourselves out into the Canal again after two nights on the  dock, for the final onslaught to Kiel. Forewarned is forearmed so to speak so we were not caught unawares at the final lock. Neatly docked like true professionals, we even avoided the Canal Fee because the lock ladder, up which one has to go to pay, was broken, and we were informed we could transit for  free! Bonus.! To be fair Rendsburg was probably a nice town. We just didn't see it in the best light. We were told it was lovely by several people and the restaurant at the marina was indeed excellent, friendly and reasonably priced.

Arrived in Leboe  Baltic Bay Marina. In the Baltic at last
Emerging into the Baltic at last as the weather fined up and we made our way to Leboe on the north eastern shore of the Kieler Fiord, leaving Kiel to the south. We had made arrangements to have some service done in the Baltic Bay Marina so we spent the next two days there. The workers never really materialised. One excellent technician did come and help put the finishing touches to the Webasto heating system. Just an air lock we couldn't budge. The Yanmar mechanic didn't show and neither did the Electrician. We have been without our Genset for over a year now since having an oil seal replaced in the Bahamas. It has never produced any power since. We have not found anyone yet to tell us why. Frustrating.

Weekend is here and no mechanics so we are gone. Goodbye Germany and hello Denmark. A brilliant sail north west to an anchorage just south of Sonderberg for the night and into Sonderberg in the morning for a days exploration.  On route to Sonderborg we watched a Coast Guard Vessel shadowing us for several hours. We waited for them to pounce and they did, just as we crossed the Danish Border. They were of course extremely professional and courteous and after an inspection of our passports to make sure we have not overstayed our Schengen Visa they departed.  
We are now in Denmark.

Friday, 2 June 2017

AMSTERDAM AND THE GREAT LAKES. 2nd June 2017

And another one of Amsterdam
Traditional Dutch Shallow Draft Fishing Boat.
Amsterdam was a fantastic stopover and one never tires of the beautiful canals and striking architecture both old and modern here in the Netherlands. We had some awesome weather and some not so awesome weather but no trouble finding places to see to keep busy. It is gradually warming up as summer approaches. Getting out of Amsterdam and into the Markemeer is a doddle. The water traffic was daunting to look at on the AIS before we left Amsterdam Marina but the reality was pretty straight forward. Lots of ferries crossing our path but traffic all flowed in an orderly way. Leaving the City behind, you quite quickly arrive at the huge lock which provides access to the Markermeer, the first of the 2 great man made lakes.

The lakes.
It being a long weekend, the lakes were crowded with vessels. The dutch have used shallow draft wide beam fishing vessels on the Zudersee long before the lakes were formed. Large areas of the vast sandy bay dried out and these boats readily take the ground, remaining upright. They have long retractable keels, or lee boards, attached either side of the hull for use underway but these retract should the vessel ground. Today many are in use as charter vessels ranging in size from just 7 or so meters up to 50 meters. They also remain a popular boat for families.
Herring smoking.

Enkhuizen, our destination, is a small harbor town of the VOC  from whence trade was conducted with the East Indies. It received city rites in  1355 and was once one of the most important harbor cities in the Netherlands. Sited on the shores of the IJsselmeer, a shallow 1100sq km artificial fresh water lake fed principally by rivers. It was created in 1932 when major hydraulic engineering works closed it from the sea with a dam wall.  It has further been cut in half with another great dam wall crossing it forming the Markermeer through which we sailed to  come north to Enkhuizen from Amsterdam.
 
Museum. Enkhuizen,
The fantastic Zuiderzee outdoor museum was an entertaining and informative outing on the first afternoon in Enkhuizen. The Museum seeks to recreate a village on the shores of the lake with all the styles of houses and stores of the old seaside communities now lost to the new fresh water lake system. Whole industries have folded and new ones have replaced them. Fishing is the obvious example. We sampled fresh smoked herring and explored the old warehouses, houses and recreated shops. Eel are prolific in the fresh waterways and special nets are deployed to catch them. We didn't try eel yet.
Store reconstruction. Enkhouizen.
Informative plaques give good details of the history of the buildings and of their inhabitants. Many of the interiors are reconstructed also with tools and utensils, furnishings and equipment. The buildings were deconstructed and relocated here from many places throughout the Zuiderzee, a supreme effort in engineering and ingenuity.  Its a really remarkable museum requiring almost a whole day to do it  justice.

Limekilns in the Museum

Enkhuizen was once fortified from the land by walls and  a moat. We took the opportunity to ride bikes around the outer wall taking in the lovely rural landscape outside the town.
Catching up with our friends Evert and Jenny on Moby Dick and some old friends whom we met crossing the Atlantic. Ron and Joce Lub off De Verleiding was another bit of fun.
Just one of hundreds of charter boats

Summer is upon us this week so armed with 20 lt of anti-foul from Ron and Joces’ Watersport in Enkhuizen we headed to Stavoren for a scheduled haul out on Tuesday. 

Upon arrival we
See the lee board.
were told there was a problem and we could maybe haul out on Friday but not certain. Monday more likely!. Very darn!! Schengen clock is ticking!! Well we chose to head to Lelystad as we were told they could lift us first thing Friday. 


Back  we went across the  IJsselmeer and through another big lock into the Markermeer again and then a short run to a canal lock and the yard. Well this lock had us in for a surprise! The water went down and down and even further down!! About 6 meters below the Markermeer level and out we flushed! It wasn't far to the yard but once again we were disappointed because the yard needed us to remove back stay and or fore stay…. sigh!! Language difficulty. So we set off back up the lock to the lake and decided to spend the afternoon in the Batavia Museum.
Batavia reproduction. Without top masts. Stavoren. Nl.

A replica of the Batavia, one of the VOC (Dutch East India Company) ships built in 1628, was built here 32 years ago and was sailed for many years. The original Batavia, as we West Australians well know, was wrecked on its maiden voyage on the Houtman Abrolhos Islands and a terrible story of mutiny, murder and heroic rescue ensued. Lelystads Batavia replica is now a, display only, because cost of maintenance and safety issues make it impractical to take out. Nevertheless it is an impressive vessel and we spent several hours in the museum.

Crouching Man Sculpture by Anthony Gormley
Poised gazing over our anchorage was a monumental metal framed sculpture dubbed by the dutch, Shitting Man, but it is an impressive addition to an otherwise flat landscape. More on Anthony Gormleys Crouching Man.
 
Another haul-out has been organized for us by our good friend Evert. This time we head to Makkum north east on the IJsselmeer. On our way to Makkum we stopped again in Stavoren on the free dock right near the town lock. It is free for a mazimum of 8 days. Not many such free facilities around the Netherlands. Stavoren was basking in a 29deg day and the town was alive with tourists. The annual Vinage Car and MotorBike Club was conducting a 200km Rally passing throug Stavoren with over 400 vehicles. What a spectacle. 

Stavoren on a busy summer long weekend.


A night on the town dock and then into the canal to Seabell. Rob Kloppers the manager, couldn't be more helpful and we hauled without incident. Safely on the hard work commenced once again. How many times have we anti fouled this boat???
 
Walker Bay Genesis 310 RIB

Just a day and it was all over bar the trims. During the interim we took the dingy across the road to have one of the tubes patched. Its our 15 year old Australian made Swift Hypalon 310 Aluminium RIB. Its performed brilliantly for us and we have no complaints but it was definitely showing signs of its age. Well Kenny, the manager of Zuidwaard Watersport Makkum had a secondhand Walker Bay  Genesis Hypalon 310 RIB 2009 in the shop and promptly offered it to us. After some consideration we decided to take it. Its a little heavier than the Aluminium RIB being Polypropylene but we hope we can manage.

Back to the water for some more adventures.
With Taipan afloat again we are eager to set off north to the Baltic. Farewell Holland and thank you for the fine friends we have made here and the wonderful experience.
For more photos of this leg of the journey.