Maiden voyage

Finally we arrived in our home port – Gäddeholm, Västerås.

We decided that we wanted to leave last weekend. Since the rigging was in place there wasn´t anything holding us back from leaving Lövudden anymore. The only problem was we still haven´t got our electric motor and we never before entered a harbour only by sail. Since this would be our maiden voyage (first trip with our new rigging) and first trip of the season we were feeling rather rusty.

We woke up to a windy day. The forecast said 6 m/s but we had a feeling it might be more than that. After breakfast we took one mooring line each and led Mouni to the end of the dock. I jumped on and took the rudder and Jens pushed the boat to give it some speed and then jumped on to set the sail. Since it was windy we decided to try out our new storm jib (foresail). We got enough speed and enjoyed sailing lake Mälaren in the sun. Although we only had the jib, we were cruising up to 5,5 knots which is pretty good speed for a boat like ours.

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Now it was time to make a plan on how to enter the harbour. The wind was blowing straight into the harbour and our mooring spot. Plan A then was that we would take down the sail when entering the harbour, and use the speed we already gained to steer into our spot on the other side. If it was too windy we would go for plan B – making a U-turn in the harbour while taking down the sail and moor by the pier instead. If anything went wrong on the way with either plan A or B, plan C was to drop an anchor in the harbour to make sure that we didn´t crash into any other boat or something else.

Entering the harbour, we decided to go for plan B since it was rather windy. Jens took down the jib. Getting a bit anxious the both of us, Jens told me to level out the U-turn a bit since we had so much speed. Finally I aimed straight for the pier, closing in… and then the boat stopped only a couple of meters from the pier – too far to jump off the boat! Jens ran to the  stern to drop down the anchor and then decided to jump into the water with a mooring line and swim to the pier. Only now it was at least 20 meters to the pier, since we had heavy wind coming straight at us. Jens swam in clothes and shoes towards the pier only to realize that the line was too short. We were drifting! He shouted at me to joint two lines together and continued to swim until he reached the pier and jumped up. By then, two nice gentlemen from another yacht by the pier came and asked if we needed any help. The three of them started to pull the boat closer with all their strength. Finally, moored!

When the wind decreased in the evening, we dragged ourselves out to pick up the anchor (poor Jens back did som heavy lifting). Now we have lived in the Gäddeholm harbour for five days and we love it. Beautiful view, no big road nearby, and easy to jump for a swim. Come stop by if you´re in Västerås!

– Petra

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Author: sailingforharmony

Cruising the oceans, exploring the world

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