Monday, 23 July 2012

Outwitting the Wind

 The weather became turbulent as we sailed back past Meifjord and entered the north coast of Norway. We had to leave Bårdfjord on Seiland Island as sudden westerly winds tried to shepherd us towards the rocky beach. We were glad we’d kept our rope reels - purchased in 2006 from Martin and Anke (“Just Do It”) in Valdivia Chile. They have been unused since our travels South, North, South and North again in Patagonia. These 100m ropes roll out quite easily when anchored on the solar arch. They hold the boat in place when strong wind changes loosen the anchor’s grip or when a narrow anchoring compass would allow the required length of chain to carry the boat onto rocks. In Patagonia, convenient trees usually offered themselves up as cleats. In Norway, iron T-stakes were hammered in years ago by long-gone mariners and can still be used as tie-ups.
Larry attaches final rope

We chose to hole up in Indre Pollen - a beautiful little spot shallow enough to lay down our anchor, girdled about by wind-defeating high mountains and with nearby beautiful flower-topped islets. We knew we’d be safe once we installed the reels and got the lines ashore. Our inbound passage was attended by a ewe and her lambs. After that, we relaxed and enjoyed a welcome visit from Rune (and former Opportune-ist Cecilie) who appeared on a fast-moving R.I.B. on Saturday evening. During the outbound leg we were out-sailed by a gorgeous sea eagle high above us.
Indre Pollen islet with flowers
Rune and Cec arrive ... 

... and leave on R.I.B.
After dinner last night, we snuck out while the wind rested and travelled all night to get here to Skjervøy at 0530 this morning (much helped by the Midnight Sun). The wind will  come back in strength later today, but it can’t get at us here at the dock – ha ha! - we’ll be able to buy some provisions and get our laundry cleaned. When it next relaxes its vigilance, we’ll hurry along to meet up with “Opportune” and its crew on a repeat visit to the Lofoten Islands.

Approach to Skjervøy   

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