Radar Training on Board 01.10. – 08.10.2011
Leaving Switzerland on Friday by train, Ernst, Rolf, Thomas and me reached Amsterdam Centraal Station early morning on Saturday where we found a quite promising weather. Marcel, our skipper already one week underway on ROLLING SWISS II was waiting for us at the Sixhaven in the heart of Amsterdam. After the arrival of Walter the fourth crew member we quickly left the port to do some food shopping for the upcoming week.
After that we started for the foreseen itinerary Amsterdam – Lelystad – Indelopen – Oudenschild – Stavoren-Hoorn – Medemblik.
The purpose of this cruise was to learn about radar and to get familiar with the excellent electronic equipment on board of RS II. We had two very good instructors, Marcel and Ernst both of them well experienced sea bears with a lot of knowledge on navigation and metrological matters. Each day was organized that we had some hours of theoretical instructions in the morning or afternoon depending on the weather forecast and the planned day trip. During the cruises each crew member had the opportunity to sit in front of the radar-plotter and to exercise what has been instructed before. Step by step we got more and more used to correctly tune the equipment, to identify land banks, boys, moving targets and to distinguish between low light signals and waves or even rain on the radar screen. Not to forget the use of the very helpful MARPA function, a very strong support to identify course, speed and probable collision points with our “enemies”.
Well prepared we started our night trip from Oudenschild to Stavoren Wednesday evening after twilight. In the beginning the red and green lighted buoys were still easily identifiable. Then the night getting darker we identified the buoys on the radar screen even before they became visible with the glasses, quite impressive. The final approach to the harbor of Stavoren became quite tricky since all the lights from the landside were even more confusing than helpful. However we found a good berthing place and enjoyed than a good late night dinner well prepared by Ernst.
On the following day after crossing to Hoorn we had to do theoretical test to be qualified for radar utilization. The whole crew passed the test with success thanks the competent instructions from Marcel and Ernst.
On Thursday already the last journey from Hoorn to Medemblik was on the program. The weather turned, a rough wind and waves came up. This was good opportunity to use the power of RS II’s engines, to go over hull speed and feel the strengths and possibilities of our Trader 42 motoryacht. Quite a difference, the Rolling Swiss II turned into a Speedy Swiss and the last trip became much more comfortable then with low speed through the nasty waves of the Ijsselmeer.
Arriving at Medemblik RS II reached the place her to stay over wintertime while the crew closed the very instructive week with a last common tasty dinner.
Summarizing the whole week I feel that this training was quite successful and I can recommend it to everyone not really familiar with the electronic equipment on board of RS II.
Many thanks to Marcel and Ernst.
Florin, Crew member on cruise 08-2011-40