#20: Back after full three weeks on the water

Marina Dalmacija, Sukosan on a Friday evening

Trip statistics:

20 days sailing all of which sunny
3 motor-only days
353 nm sailed of which 152 nm under motor
max wind speed 25 kts
max boat speed 8 kts
shortest day sailing: 1 hr 10
longest day sailing: 7 hrs 50

Major issues: none
Minor issues: broken hinges, steering wheel lock, winch handle; lost pegs, swimming goggles, balloon

Distance sailed today: 20 nm
Destination: Marina Dalmacija, Sukosan

#19: Great evening light view on Zadar

Today, after lifting anchor around noon we quickly set sail and head off into the waters in front of Zadar. This brings us to the mainland side of Ugljan and Pasman islands which is necessary to have a short last day when returning the boat.

At the dinner table we are looking across about 2 nm of water and have a great sunset view of Zadar.

Challenges of the day:
1) refueling next to Preko ferry terminal with a fresh side wind. Thanks to a little help from the gas station service staff we managed well, with a little extra engine thrust forward plus bow thruster support.
2) a t-shirt goes over board in the marina late in the evening. With a small throwing hook attached to a rope a friendly marinero accepts the challenge and helps us fish it back the next morning
3) the marina has suffered a gas/diesel spill and we sleep in the noticeable fumes…

Distance sailed today: 11 nm
Destination: Marina Preko

#18: Treasure hunt in an old ship wreck

After a quiet night we have a bit of a difficult start at first: the lock of the helm breaks off when we try opening it. That is a bit of a shock at first because we are looking at a fastened metal bolt with a thread and no screwdriver slot or indeed anything that could help turn it loose. The large cap that was used to tighten or open it by hand was only lightly soldered to this bolt … after messing around with a winch handle that in the end is useless as a tool, removing the back cover of the steering transmission just to confirm that there is nothing there to help us, finally simple pliers are the solution: used first to open the ring that hides our bolt and then, having revealed enough of that bolt to tightly grip it with the pliers, in the end opening the bolt.

Now we are again able to use the helm, first we head off just a short distance out of the bay to a 1984 ship wreck.

After a great morning exploring we continue to a small bay near Muline for anchoring.

Challenges of the day:
1) steering wheel lock broken in locked position (see above)
2) landing with the dinghi: the bay is reserved for swimming at the beach. Going on shore with the dinghi takes a bit of balancing over sharp stones

Distance sailed today: 15 nm
Destination: anchoring in Pavlesina bay, Muline, Ugljan island

#17: At Veli Rat lighthouse

Today brings us from Veli Iz to Veli Rat.

Noteworthy events underway:
1) Lukas looses a yellow balloon. It is a remainder of his birthday a few days earlier. He is so happy to have found it and plays with it on deck. It drops once, twice, and someone catches it. The third time, not a chance to catch it. Lukas cries “no” and when he realises that the balloon is not going to come back he is heart broken. We look after the balloon still visible in the distance for a long time.
2) An almost crash between two sailing yachts A and C, prevented by the last minute maneuver of the ship C that should maintain it’s course. The odd thing about this situation was that there was little doubt about who had to change course (A, having a port side wind), and the almost collision was with a second boat (C). Another boat (B) maintained course only half a minute earlier and was properly avoided by C.

In the evening, the children make a small adventure trip with Tim and Florian and the dinghi to visit Veli Rat. A serendipity: we get a little trumpet concert at the lighthouse.

Distance of the day: 29 nm
Destination: Veli Rat lighthouse, Pantera bay

#16: Back to civilization

After three nights in bays and a national park marina today we are bound for Iz island where we want to stay in the marina of the small town.

During the day we pass by large fish farms (with a distinct smell…!) and a bit later we are lucky to see a pair of dolphins passing by slowly.

We’re lucky to arrive at the marina before 4 pm. Within the next 30 minutes all places are taken in the small harbour.

Distance sailed: 22 nm
Destination: Veli Iz Marina

#15: Incredible night sky

A very nice sailing day with a lot of tacking through Kornati and Telašcica.

Nice grilled fish and for the kids a super playground, chicken and turtles – in a very remote bay.

So quiet that the following picture was possible (using a Pixel 6 in night mode):

Challenge of the day: Lukas really didn’t want to take a nap in the afternoon. Even though he was very tired. He almost fell asleep and then woke himself up crying “nicht schlafen” (no sleeping). This procedure lasted for more than one hour until he finally couldn’t help but falling asleep.

Distance of the day: 22 nm
Destination: Kruševica bay in Telašcica National Park

#14: Calm day, nice marina, with a shock moment

Today, almost no wind, so we motored along the edge of the Kornati National Park to Piskera. A nice sunset and a warm evening.

The kids were happily playing at the back of the boat and on the jetty. Then suddenly we did have a shock moment: splash, Lukas fell into the water – without life jacket.

As by our rules, when the boat is not moving wearing a life vest for the kids is not mandatory but an adult has to be watching them. So Helen was “on duty” in this case. What happens next is blurred in my memory: all I know is that I was on deck, hear a splash, hear Helen give me clear and precise information/instructions next thing I know is I jump in next to Lukas and all but catapult him out of the water onto the bathing platform of the yacht. He was really upset about the whole situation and kept repeating the next hours and days, that the water was too deep to stand. After a few minutes he started walking along the jetty again – the rest of the vacation he didn’t fall into the water again.

We’re glad this happened in this probably cleanest of all marinas on such a calm day with so much space everywhere.

Distance of the day: 18 nm
Destination: Marina Piškera in Kornati National Park

#13: Goodbye to civilisation (for just a few days)

We leave Rogoznica and head out to the islands furthest away from mainland in front of Sibenik / Biograd. We have refilled our water tanks and expect less comfort in terms of shopping in the coming days.

After a few hours half sailing half motoring we reach Zirje island and first go for some swimming.

Event of the day: a smaller sailing yacht chooses to move from their mooring buoy to a free one closer to land and the restaurant. Just after leaving their main engine fails. They drift slowly across the bay and their dinghi is too small to manoever them. Our dinghi currently underway… but after it returns, Tim joins the other yacht and helps moor at another buoy. In the mean time another sailor had seen what happened and also joined to help with his dinghi. Once again lucky it was so calm weather.

Distance of the day: 13 nm
Destination: Vela Stupica, Zirje island

Challenge of the next morning: a short trip to shore is planned before leaving the bay. We run out of fuel in the dinghi after almost reaching the shore! Lucky for us we get a little refill from a group of friendly Austrians nearby and make it back easily.

#12: tacking into the mistral winds

Until now, almost two weeks, we followed the winds down the coast from Zadar to Vis island and back to mainland at Trogir. Our longest tack was about 25 nm in a straight line without changing the sails doing comfortable 6 kts boat speed for several hours.

From today we were going to head into the prevailing wind direction of mistral or maestral winds. And indeed this is one of the wind patterns you must know in July in Dalmatia – but quickly figure out as well. For sure we had textbook perfect weather conditions and that means NW winds most days.

So today, to reach Rogoznica from Trogir we motored straight into the wind for about one hour before setting sail and doing some tacking between mainland and the islands to slowly but steadily make our way forward.

In the evening we are rewarded with another calm evening at Marina Frapa. It is a rather large marina and feels a little artificial – we tried to stay at the local harbour but it was fully reserved already.

Distance of the day: 20 nm
Destination: Marina Frapa, Rogoznica

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