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Up North, further up North
-- August - September 2016  --
Sweden is very beautiful, but Oslo is a maritime city and we would love to have the boat right by our home place. So after having enjoyed the pink rocks, let's head to the North and a new country.

A few pictures from the sunny summer in our page "Pictures".

124 miles sailed

Our stops, click on the names for more details:
Smögen (port) - Killingen (marina)
 6-7 August: Smögen (16M)
Back to Sweden for a week-end on Saltimbanque. This time we are heading to the North and the village of Smögen, famous for its little white wooden houses. Navigation against the rather strong wind and a chaotic sea, and we arrive in the harbour, hosting that day a competition of -big- engine boats !

Not a big deal as we are willing to see the rocky shore more than the wooden houses. We leave then for a walk, not without grabbing an ice cream when walking the rocky crack that the harbour consists of. And we start trudging on the pink rocks.

The end of the harbour

Wooden promenade on the vertical cliff
A hole in the rocks has been converted to a sort of a beach, quite popular, and we decide to go and see further.

A few rocks further we are alone. It's summy and warm, and the mineral landscape is just extraordinary. A crack at the very end has a swimming ladder attached to, which invites for a swim. The water is crystal clear as rarely seen and Laure doesn't resist for long!

We enjoy this granitic paradise until the sun set, and then finally have a short walk through the village. Ok it's cute but after the amazing show of the sea and the rocks we are not so impressed!

Sailing back to Lysekil goes all right, running in a strong wind. We experience a few violent gusts, quasi-katabatic, on the lee of the largest rocks.

But the most of the storm is still to come: 50 knots in the harbour during the next 3 days! We get all the sails down to preserve the equipment. Not many navigations in August as both our jobs keep us away from our friend with sails :o(

Rocky desert....

9-10 September: Lysekil - Killingen (108M)
A last glance at the weather forecast confirms the window: if we leave on Friday evening we have about 30 hours of moderate Southwesterly wind that should allow us to sail efficiently until Oslo. Up North, further up North !

And off we go for a trip in public transportations to Saltimbanque. As soon as we arrive, so we depart. We leave Lysekil at 22:00 by a magnificent night.

The wind is still blowing from the West and is veering quickly to the South. We sail slowly in betwen these islands, so familar by now. A quick check on the heading confirms that we can take the shortcut: a very narrow channel in between rocks and 2 - unlit - buoys, only guided by the narrow white ray of light of a sector lighthouse. Well it was piece of cake ! We even saw the dark buoys :o)

Tradewind-like sail configuration to cross the Norwegian border...
Once offshore we bear away and so can the gliding run to Norway start ! The wind is a bit weak at first and we stay on a broad reach under main sail and genoa... on a pole ! Like in the good old times ! Running under the stars is pretty cool actually... But the loud noise of a blowhole pulls us out of our contemplation: it's a pilot whale 3-4m long who has decided to play with the boat like a dolphin. It lasts for 15 amazing minutes...
Running with the wind is stable and fast ! The wind picks up a bit and we continue with only the genoa on a pole. The current is  helping and we maintain an average speed of 6,5 knots through the night.

Early in the morning we cross the Norwegian border! The wind picks up in the entrance of the Oslo fjord and we take the pole down. The clouds arrive. It starts raining.

And one more country !

Arriving at our new home port ! Nice weather over Oslo...
The Oslo fjord is long, very long. We need about 10 hours at full speed with the genoa in a rather strong wind to reach its end. Running with only the front sail on a flat sea is rather cool actually ! At around 3pm we sail by Drøbak, the nice city with the fortress we had visited during the spring.

And at 18:30 we arrive in the harbour that we picked for the winter, just west of Bygdøy. 108 NM in 20h, that's a good speed for us !
Saltimbanque is now by 59°54'N and 15 minutes bike from home !
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