Aug 26, 2015

Perfect summer weekend!

Late summer or early autumn has always a bit special feeling: one starts to get back to the work routines and there is a certain melancholy in the air as the summer holiday and the main sailing trip of the year is already over. However, the weather is usually warmer than in the early summer, so there is a good chance of getting nice getaways during the weekends and evening trips.

I guess that we all can agree how weather dependent sailing often is: this hobby can have a completely different face depending on if it is warm and sunny or cold and windy. Less than a month ago in July, we were wearing woolen hats and gloves when sailing in the Archipelago Sea. On the other hand, this August has been great in Northern Baltic Sea and on last weekend it actually felt like we would have been sailing in the Mediterranean.

We decided to take the advantage of the heatwave and cast-off on Friday morning for long-weekend trip. Due to the persistent high pressure, calm winds were forecasted for the whole weekend so we took a pretty relaxed schedule. Fortunately, sea breeze picked up every afternoon so in the end we were able to sail almost two thirds of the seventy nautical miles' trip.

Beautiful Friday evening in Helsingholm. Although the harbour was rather full in the evening, 
we managed to get the last sauna booking from 11 to 12 pm. 

The following day was calm so we motored first to nearby Sandön. This uninhabited island has 
long sandy beaches and on this warm Saturday afternoon, this place was like some deserted Caribbean island.   

 A lot of boats visiting Sandön on Saturday... and also one seaplane! 

 A drone photo of Sandön, which shows the long sand bank in the eastern tip of the island.

The westerly wind increased in the evening, so we decided to hoist the anchor and sail to nearby Benskär which has a more sheltered anchorage. 

Sailing past Sandön on Sunday afternoon. 

Sunday evening barbeque in our sailing club's harbour in Heisala. 

Aug 9, 2015

New anchorages in Northern Åland

Dolphin Dance in Northern Åland

Northern Åland Archipelago is definitely one of our favourite cruising areas in the Baltic Sea. It is not only the breathtakingly beautiful nature that makes us go back there year after year, but also the silence and feeling of being in the wilderness. Due to the strict legislation for land ownership in Åland, there are fewer summer houses than elsewhere in the Baltic Archipelagos. To me this area has same kind of appeal that Lapland has – it kind of feels like the time has stopped beating there.

Last year we stayed in beautiful Simskälä, which we fell in love with. The island does not have a harbour, but there is a small visitor quay for one or two boats. This year we decided to search for an anchorage in the area west of Simskäla. The evening was totally calm and the silence of this place felt magical.

The following day we continued first to nearby Hamnsundet to buy some fish and after that we continued further to HavsVidden, which we visited also last year. This 5-star hotel's guest harbour with pool area offers nice contrast for staying in wild anchorages.

From HavsVidden we continued to nearby Saggö-Ön island which together with Saggö island has some of the best anchorages in the area.

Calm anchorage
Anchorage west of Simskäla

Calm evening in Northern Åland Anchorage in Northern Åland - Aerial photo HR29 in Åland Anchorage in Northern Åland HavsVidden

Sunset in HavsVidden Saggö-Ön View to Koksnan
Saggö-Ön – the view from the northern shore

Saggö-Ön Saggö-Ön_Russian fortress
Saggö-Ön - remainings of old Russian artillery batteries

Old stoned path goes from the harbour bay to the northern shore

Aug 3, 2015

Photos from July: Archipelago Sea and Åland Archipelago

After spending two windy nights in Hanko, we continued towards west and Åland Archipelago on the 8th of July. Here are some photos from July.

Nordic summer at its best... back in winter gear. After a short warm period in early July, the weather turned colder again.

Helsingholmen - the one and only! It was nice to visit this favourite harbour also during high-season.

Korpoström guest harbour is located in beautiful surroundings and has a good location, when heading for Åland.

After a windy leg across Kihti, it was nice to anchor in the shelter of Bänö-Ön island in Åland.

From Bänö-Ön we continued to Rödhamn, located by the Åland Sea.

We made a stopover at Kastelholm also this year

Visit to nearby Smakbyn restaurant is a must!

Leaving Kastelholm's fjord for Northern Åland.