Long cold sunny days

In Bergen, the Goddess ran off minutes after securing FF Ella to the quay. She was set on getting a shower at some old friend’s house, while the other crew-members had their eyes on a good old roll on the electric kickbikes to find a decent kebab. Showers are after all not a neccecity in cold weather when we are being Corona-prevented from hugging anyways.

Bergen hadn’t changed much since our last visit, on our northbound journey. The street May have been a bit more quiet, and all the bars were closed. Only the places that derved food were allowed to stay open, making the thirsty people of Bergen buy small cheap sandwiches next to their trays of beer. We were however tired after a long day of sailing, and turned in long before the Goddess returned from her showers.

Our plan in Bergen was to vist the aquarium. It was on Captain Simen’s to-do list and we finally had the chance to do it. The place is well worth a visit, and allthough a bit expensive it was a great activity.

To nights later our plan was to go on to Fitjar, a good 35 nautical miles down the coast. But once again the engine stoppes working due to the fault on the cooling-system. We had no choice but to find a safe harbour for the night while working out a permanent fix to the problem. Florvåg ended up being the place where we were allowed to stay for free through the night to solve the issue. Captain Simen worked his magic and cleaned out the whole system. It was clear that a good cleaning hadn’t been done in years and the next morning we felt confident to carry on.

Balto waiting for things to happen.

My originale plan was to pick up some lost time and sail quite a bit further than originally planned, but as darkness fell upon us and the ice cold winter presenter itself upon us, I decided that Fitjar was a good place after all. And as luck would have it they even had showers, it was a completely clean and well-smelling crew that woke up the next morning – just to learn that the boat was surrounded by ice.

FF Ella is built in Steel, so I wasn’t too worried about her as we spent the first hour pushing our way through a fairly thick layer of ice. Eventually we broke free and presented ourselves to the City of Haugesund, which is a great place to arrive in. You have the feeling of sailing straight through the city and they have pretty good prices for leasure-boats during the winter.

The next morning we sailed off early. The Goddess was once again deserting us and had decided to spend 24 hour on the car-ferry Stavangerfjord. Why to spend this much time on a ferry that run back and forth across a fjord is question only she can answer, but we let her ashore before continuing on toward Stavanger.

We are now secured in Dusavika where we will spend the next week. The Goddess have to go back to the inland to take care of something they call work before returning by an aeroplane on monday. We will then spend the coming three weeks to sail the southern part of Norway.

FF Ella resting in Bergen

Thanks to Chris who let us use his lot in Dusavika harbour for our stay in Stavanger. And please excuse the grammar in this post as it is written on my phone. Until next time,

Bon voyage, Captain Jack

Back from vacation

We’ve had a good stop, leaving the ship behind in Åndalsnes and ventured inland to tack down the Goddess. Balto the Great got to ride the infamous Rauma railway and to discover snow for the first time. The Captains finally had the chance to rest for a day or two in the winter-town of Lillehammer where Santa was busy working the streets. While waiting for the Goddess to finish up some undone business, like hunting down wolf-hunters and starting a new job, we had the luxury of hot showers and a full sized bed.

Balto missing the sea.

Finally it was time for us to return to our belowed vessel. Unattended for weeks FF Ella had accumulated a thick layer of heavy snow. We got enough shuffled off before darkness came upon us to get a good start the next morning.

FF Ella upon our return

There was of course a concern that the frost or someone had done some damage while we were gone, but we quickly learned that noone had touched the ship while we were gone. Not long after we got started the next morning there was however an issue with the cooling-system that had us power down for a good hour leavi g us in the faith of our sail while Captain Simen worked the problem.

Captain/mechanic Simen doing his thing.

One we learned what the problem was, we where soon back and running. The day had presented us with little wind, bud the sky was clear and at times the sun peaked down at us between the mountains. Our goal for the day was to reach Ålesund, some 50 nautical miles through the Romsdalsfjord and Midtfjorden.

We also spent the day cleaning off most of the remaining snow.

We reached Ålesund, got onto the mission of finding suitable drinking-water, made dinner and quickly turned in for the night. The next day was yet another long leg, the second on a row, but neccesary in order to stay ahead of a minor storm heading our way. Our plan for the day was to sail one of the most dangerous parts of the entire Norwegian coastline, the supposedly horrific Stadt; where winds and waves cross paths in all directions. But just as last time we crossed this sailors nightmare we couldn’t be luckier with the conditions.

We cruised through, and allthough we once again was delayed due to a faulting cooling-system and therefore completed the voyage in the dark, we reached our destination – the monestary on Selja, that noone know when was built.

There was of course no electrisity on the island, but we are prepared for condition like this and fired up the old alchol-stove for heating. After yet another long day and the Goddess’ awesome potato-stew we quickly turned in to prepare our bodies and soul for a whole day exploring the monestary and let Balto roam free for the first time in weeks.

In order to get moving and to fullfill our wish of drying our clothes, we made the two hour journey to Måløy in the afternoon. This allowed us to prepare for our next step to prevent ourselves from getting held back by the weather – next day by making our way to Florø, where we will be resting up and waiting out the worst of the icy rain that is currently washing off the rest of the ice covering the boat.

It’s great to be back and to make such good progress every day. Strange enough I guess since there is no concrete plans to how and when this adventure shall end. For now we are having Bergen and Stavanger on the list of ports to visit, but other than that.. Who knows..

Captain Jack