Three days going north

We left Aero after breakfast Saturday and sailed east and then north up Lillebelt west of Fyn. We had a mostly sunny downwind sail in a fresh breeze with the genoa on the boom to windward. The wind turned from E to almost S as we headed more and more north so the sails stayed the same almost all day.

We looked at the forecast and saw that the following days had favourable winds. The decision was then made to use this to take us closer to home in the hope that we may have some days on our cost before Eva had to go back to work.

Sunny downwind sailing with one reef in the main.

We found a nice bay on the south side of Kolding fjord to anchor in the first night. Having decided to carry on northwards, we left a little bit earlier yesterday. We were now going more eastwards so we had a long reach hard on the 20+ knot SE wind.

The current coming out of the Baltic gave us a push and we made good speed. We could ease the sheets turning north at Samso. The wind settled down and we thought it might be possible after all to enter the small, and quite exposed, harbour of Tuno, another favourite island.

But, just as we had shred the sailing gear and put on shorts, the wind came back in full force again so we had to carry on. We arrived after six in the protected harbour of Ebeltoft. This time, we tried the “Fregat harbour” by the museum, excellent, and cheaper than the main harbour.

Having spent several days here a week ago, we did not even go shore. We just had dinner and a good night’s sleep before sailing again half past seven today. The wind was again SE at 20+ knots. We sailed out doing 5 knots under reefed main only while we had our breakfast.

We had the wind and substantial waves on our nose after rounding up to go around the headland so we decided to test our new engine in ruff conditions for the first time. It worked well and we could not tell any difference in power compared to the old one even if we now are down from nominal 48 to42 hp.

We could unfurl the sails again after a bumpy and wet hour. A close reach and following current gave us 8+ knots over ground – still bumpy and wet. It is in conditions like this that you find out where you have your leaks. We found on in one of our new smaller deck hatches.

To our immense delight, and for the first time ever, there were no leaks in the forward cabin. And, noting from the renovated deck except from in one of our new smaller deck hatches. So, a winter’s work has paid off.

There are not so many good and nice harbours on this coast. Around 11 we had two choices. Vi could carry on close reaching to Anholt, around 30 nm and 4-5 hours away. Or, we could ease off a little on the sheets and head north to Laeso (Læsø) 65 nm away. The days are shorter now and it is getting dark around eight.

A litle over 200 nm during three days downwind and reaching .

In order to arrive in daylight, we needed an average speed over seven knots. Not something we normally count on for longer spells. We checked wind and current forecasts and they were favourable all day.

There is very little tide in these waters. Instead, the currents are dependent on surface pressure and a high was moving in over the northern Baltic punching water out along our way for at least another day. So we gambled, eased of on the sheets and sailed north, in the beginning averaging over 9 knots. The wind and see settled in the afternoon and the reef in the main was unfurled. We arrived in Laeso Vesterhavn around seven, having averaged close to 8 knots over 88 nm from port to port.

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