Friday, 13. August
No long sleep today, especially that the morning toilet has to be done at sea. So we take to sea at 6:30 am – record. Today we also want to sail quite far towards north, the plan for the maximum is Kalmar. It marks the half of the meridian extent of our planned route. If it is successful, we will be able to take stress out of our journey and take breaks for sightseeing. This time we also have reserve ports on the east coast along which we will sail. Just not to get lost, because the entrances to the ports are easy to miss among the straits between the skerries and small marinas, unmarked on our maps. So we count the skerries and tick them off on the map: Utlangan, Ungskär, Vieskär, Långören…
Then we enter the Kalmar Strait, located between Oland and the mainland. It is quite narrow, so strong currents tend to form in it. Now, the south-west wind has been blowing for several days, so the currents should be favorable to us. An alternative would be to sail around Oland from the east, but I’m glad we don’t have to. A certain unpleasant surprise are underwater stones, located even a few miles away from the coast, and which lie shallow under water. To have peace of mind and avoid precise navigation during this long voyage, we navigate using eastern cardinal buoys for large ships.
And again the wind stops blowing, and we have to turn on the motor again, because we have to arrive somewhere. Meanwhile, we decided not to sail directly to Kalmar, but to the small port of Ekenäs several miles south. The forecast announces the next two port days, and we do not want to spend that time in the city center.
In the afternoon the wind comes, turns to the west, and increases – and we want to sail from the sea to the harbour just to the west. So we drop our sails fairly early and use the engine to maneuver carefully between the seal reserve, skerries and underwater stones towards the port entrance. Here you have to navigate very precisely – an underwater stone is even in the middle of the harbour basin. We can say, long cruises and skerries are mutually exclusive.
We moor, however, without any adventures, even though the single aft buoy system – which we actually had to pass over – is new to us.