Week 10 - Sailing up the Bohusian Coast to Oslo with Darwin Friends                                                                                         Monday 29th to Sunday 4th August

072913 7 The Traffic behind us approaching Gullholmen

Leaving Marstrand we took the scenic route north with the local boat traffic again continuing to amaze not only us but our guests onboard. First stop out of Marstrand was Gullholmen a small island community first established around 1200, there are around 120 permanent residents but this swells to several thousand in the summer. The beautiful harbour was full on our arrival but we had thankfully reserved a spot which was literally between a rock at the bow and a rock obstacle at our stern. We had no sooner secured Katherine to her mooring and a Sea Rescue Demonstration began in front of us complete with helicopter rescue. The only down side of our position was that the garbage boat was running late and arrived several hours later meaning we had to stand off while they did the garbage run. 

073013 9 Sote Kanal bridge opened

From Gullholmen we anchored out at Gluppo after having taken Katherine once more through the Sota Canal. Traffic was again thick in the canal but we were fortunate that the friendly bridge controller held the bridge a little longer so that we did not have to hang around in the canal too long amongst the boat traffic.

When we had anchored previously at Gluppo we thought we were in a remote rock outcrop - a dinghy ride around the area soon put an end to that myth. Behind the rocks were once more small communities. That night we put plenty of chain out as we knew that a blow was coming though - our neighbour obviously hadn't and around 2:30am Andrew headed over in the dinghy to let them know that we didn't really want them coming for coffee and perhaps they had best get up and move their boat that was coming uncomfortably close to us as their tender had hit our anchor chain in front of our bow.

080113 4 The perfect first boat

Stromstad was our final Swedish stop although in harbour you would have thought we were in Norway by the number of Norwegian flags. Here boats were coming and going at a rate of knots including whilst Andrew was trying to moor alongside. Two power boats decided that there was still room to slip between us and our mooring whilst we were trying to manoeuvre in both tight and windy conditions. Nothing like having the skippers manoeuvring skills tested again in front of a crowd. Apparently Stromstad is very popular with the Norwegians because swedish taxes are cheaper than the Norwegian so they cross the border on all means of transport to take advantage of the pricing. In Stromstad we had a great fish and chips meal at the local restaurant literally at the end of our pier but were surprised to be told that within two weeks they will only be trading on weekends as the summer season is drawing to an end. 

080113 7 On anchor east side of Jelya Hvittingbukta anchorage

A final night was spent on anchor off the north western corner of the island of Jelya as we headed up to Oslo Fjord. We anchored in 20+ meters of water on the edge of a 70m drop off so a bit of time was spent ensuring we were secured before sitting back to watch the entertainment of some locals fishing almost off the bow of the boat and the surrounding view which had dramatically changed from the starkness of the Swedish rocks to tall pine forests. 

080313 4 The view from our cockpit of Oslo

Friday saw us arrive into Oslo - Akker Brygge the marina is literally downtown with a front row view of the Civic Centre. Here it was time to bid farewell to Sue, Peter, Ross and Deb of Darwin as they head home from a trip that seems to have gone way too fast. We have enjoyed their company and the opportunity to share the cruising ground that we find so interesting and different to home. What has been even more amazing whilst they have been with us is the weather - the thermals never came out but we haven't heard a complaint from any one of them.

Till next time Darwinites.

© SV Katherine 2018      Cover Photo: Katherine on Anchor Isle Tabarca Spain