While we are waiting for our new mast to arrive in Kappeln, I had the opportunity to fly with my buddy Jens around Germany’s northern-most state, Schleswig-Holstein, and take a couple of maritime themed photos.
You might recognize the locks of the Kiel Canal we went through last summer, a couple of the marinas in Kiel, the lighthouses we passed on the way to Kappeln, or the Schlei (where Tioga is now). Other interesting sites are the UNESCO world heritage Wattemeer in the Northsea and some of the islands and beaches in that area.
North Sea – Sandbank – Wattenmeer
The last leg of our 2015 transatlantic tour took us from St Malo, France, via Guernsey (Channel Islands) and Cowes (Isle of Wight, UK) to Germany.
The Channel Islands are a destination in their own right and in three days we barely scratched the surface. Taking the ferry to Sark was a great experience and we wished we had more time (and less rain).
Sailing across the Channel past the Needles and down the Solent to the sailing mecca, Cowes, was a special experience (especially, when 400 boats participating in the Fastnet Race are going in the opposite direction).
On the Isle of Wight we enjoyed our daily exercise riding bikes up and down the rolling hills.
Finally pushing off to the final sail took us past the cliffs of Dover, lots wind farms and oil platforms and endless lines of freighters. Going through the locks to get into the Kiel Canal indicated that we were getting close.
A large reception with family and friends topped it off before we took Tioga out of the water in Kappeln.
All basic repairs are done by now and the more significant work is in progress. The new mast was ordered.
Distance traveled: about 680nm.
Life is good… (don’t wait too long to live it to its fullest 😉 )
Again, an attempt to provide access to the same video in countries where YouTube blocks this video:
The number of chairs squeezed into our clubhouse last night might have broken a record. It was nice so see such as large and interested crowd during our presentation of this year’s journey across the Atlantic.
Given the close connection between our tour and the various people and places in France we visited, it was good to listen to Commodore Manny’s opening statements where he found the appropriate words to address the tragedy in Paris.
Manny handed over to Philip and we continued with a couple of photos summarizing the highlights of the tour, giving us the opportunity to explain the bigger picture in words and answering questions.
- preparation took about 5 years
- 15 people sailed the boat this year, spread over three legs, supporters: many, many more
- we sailed about 4000nm, roughly 1/3 of the entire tour
- highest waves: about 45ft, strongest wind: low 50s kn, highest tides: approximately 40ft
- sailboats seen between Nahant and Azores: 0
- near collisions with whales: 3
- time to paint mural in Horta: 3 days
- number of significant storms: 3
- highest number of concurrent AIS targets: 86 (North Sea)
After that, Corinna, Ellen and Peter presented the burgees to the Dory Club that we had exchanged at various places:
- Peter Cafe Sport, Horta, Faial, Azores
- Guernsey Yacht Club, Guernsey
- Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club, Cowes
- Island Sailing Club, Cowes
Videos for each leg followed, showing live at sea and the various places we visited.
Comments about Philip’s choice of music were minimal 😉
Photos we presented to explain overall route;
Summary video of crew and this year’s highlights:
As most people lose interest when watching hundreds photos of someone else’s trip, here is a very quick slideshow to get an idea of what this year’s trip looked like.
A teaser to our upcoming video night at the Dory Club…
The things you can do with a phone these days; time lapse, slow motion etc. Combine that with the good eye of Alex and you get a nice impression of our final leg to Germany.
The Kiel Canal is 61nm long and saves about 250nm compared to going around Denmark’s Jutland. It is the busiest canal in the world, based on number of boats going through (the Panama canal handles the most freight in the world, but less ships).
We arrived at the locks, closed the loop with the lock operators and were tied up inside in less than 20min. It was nice to motor in protected waters for a change and we truly enjoyed the scenery. As it is only allowed to use the canal with a sailboat (under engine) during the daytime, we made it as far as possible and then anchored in Flemhuder See, just an hour from Kiel (where the canal ends and the Baltic Sea begins).
On the next day we had a nice reception by Inne, Hans and Kai on the North Shore and Herbert on the South Shore. Of course it rained while we went through the locks in Kiel where we also paid the 35 Euros for the passage.