Thursday, April 24, 2014

First sailing weekend of the season

Last weekend we spent two days on Heron. It was supposed to be "sailing weekend", but due to the weather and many boat projects that were waiting to be done, it turned out to be "working weekend". Although we did sail a couple of miles.

Soon after we arrived to Klimno on Saturday and boarded Heron it started to rain. We did some smaller things around the boat and although we were working it was really cold and damp. Luckily the rain stopped in early evening and we decided to sail off immediately, but only a couple of miles away to next good anchorage.

We sailed out of the bay to the East, towards Velebit hills.

Although the rain stopped, it was still very cloudy. As always, I was fascinated by the clouds.

After a bit more than an hour we reached the bay of Petrina, where we anchored.

Evening was damp and cold and soon after dinner we snuggled up in our warm sleeping bags and went to sleep. Morning brought a few rays of sun and the bay looked even prettier than the evening before.

The water was crystal clear and all the time Heron was right above the anchor (in the middle of photo, on the right is shadow of me taking the photo).

First bigger project was to disassemble the stairs and reinforce them. We removed the bottom three steps that can be lifted to get to the engine, and the top one, that is fixed. We didn't need to remove the insulation, a while ago it fell down by itself, the weird pattern are the remains of the glue.

Of course we had to invent the way to climb up to the cockpit and then back down into the boat. This was the first solution...

... and this the second, improved, one. It took a bit of gymnastics to use it.

A little after noon we sailed back to Heron's buoy. Well, we did sail for a while, but most of the time the engine was also on.

Once back on the buoy we tackled the second bigger project - to find out why the anchor winch is not working every now and then.

After disassembling the motor and doing some of the work on the toilet we drove home. Now we'll have to do a lot more work before we can go sailing again. We need to reinforce the stairs and assemble everything together (insulation is already glued back on), clean the anchor winch motor and reinforce the toilet with bigger screws or bigger washers.

Easter holiday we spent with our families and next weekend we're back on Heron again.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Heron news

 Since we're bound to land life for a while I have every intention of making the best of it. One of the very few things I was missing while living aboard were plants, flowers and garden. I was struggling with a basil plant in a small pot, I carried it out on the sun when we were on anchor and carried it into the boat when sailing and tying it down to the gimballed stove and the poor plant still flew through the boat several times when we were sharply tacking or beating into the wind. But it survived, it sailed with us back over the Atlantic and I brought it home.

Nevertheless, one plant is far from what I've been used to. So ever since we returned I'm slowly recreating the pretty and colourful surroundings we used to have. These are my new indoor additions - the Cattleya orchid...

... Paphiopedilum  orchid...

... and Masdevallia orchid.

The tree are not exactly the beginners plants, but I hope they'll like it here and maybe bloom again.

In March Tomaz sailed Heron to Croatia, we found her new temporary home in Klimno on island Krk. It is only two hours drive from our home, surrounded by many islands and bays and we hope to sail more often than we did in second half of last year. Last weekend we drove there to do some boat projects. We changed the oil and the oil filter, impeller, which was stubbornly stuck in place refusing to be changed, we fixed the plug on electrical cable for shore power and we pressure-washed the exterior of the boat. Busy weekend! We never got the chance to sail, all we did was bring Heron to the pier on Saturday and on Sunday moved it back to the buoy. And it was really really cold in the night,  on Sunday morning there were only 10 deg C inside the boat! Thanks God for my polar sleeping bag!

I managed to find a few minutes on my way from the boat to the car and back to take a look into the water and since being in the harbour I didn't expect much, but here's what I found - the Tunicates!  They are not as colourful as those in Caribbean but this is definitely worth a snorkelling expedition when the water gets warmer.

I also discovered some Tubeworms...

... and some translucent shrimps.

There were also some rug-like plants on the pier, that had pretty but very small flowers.

And here is Heron back on her buoy. Until the next weekend...