Sweden to Finland

 26.05. – 02.06.2012 Stockholm – Turku

Skipper: Ernst and URS
Crew: Daniel, Akki, André, Daniela

The trip started in Stockholm with our taking over Rolling Swiss II.  While the skipper took care of the paperwork and checking over the Trader 42, the rest of the crew went shopping.  Since it was clear that we would be unlucky to find many shopping facilities on the way to Turku, we had to stock up on a week’s food for six.

Our first adventure was to transport three stuffed shopping trolleys and three adults back to the harbour in taxis – which took quite a lot of persuasion.  After everything was stowed on board, the real adventure could begin.

After the safety briefing, we were out to sea and off to our first anchorage at the island of Bergh.  During dinner, we noticed the the anchor was dragging, so out on deck to carry out some new maneouvers, and then after the food was reheated and eaten, off to bed.

Waking up in the idyllic bay was a most romantic experience, and we really felt to be on holiday.  After a sumptuous breakfast, we could get ourselves familiar with the operation of the boat.  We practiced repeatedly various exercises in seamanship, including anchoring. Today’s goal was Kapellsär HAMN on Rådmansö.

Before we continued on to crossing the open sea to Mariehamn , there was  intensive instruction on distress signals and man overboard procedures. Interesting and educational information and it made us very aware how much there to note in such a situation – and that we never want to experience one.

Despite good weather, the crossing was very turbulent due to strong winds. Not only the high waves had us feeling that we just danced a nutshell in the open sea, but also the huge ferries and freighters. We were on the highway of professional ships! So we could practice applying all the regulations, especially when we found ourselves in the middle of two intersecting ferries. An exciting experience! With the aarrival in Mariehamn, we changed time zone from UTC + 2 to UTC + 3.  Åland is a province of Finland, which is very Swedish but with broad autonomy. It is in the Northern Baltic Sea, at the entrance of Gulf of Bothnia  between Sweden and the Finnish mainland. The archipelago consists of over 6’700 islands and Skerries, and is about 40 km from the Swedish coast and 15 kilometres from the Finnish coast.

Before sailing to Bomarsund , the crew practiced mooring exercises. It felt great to feel the effects of the rudders and engines, getting to know the pivot points of the boat and how to use the winds in manouvers.

From Bomarsund we went through the archipelago sea to Fiskö and again on the following day to Nauvo. The archipelago lies between the islands of Åland and the Finnish mainland. The sea area is dotted with thousands of islands, rocks, shallows and other hazards.  In navigaitional terms, it is a challenge, but very instructive! We followed the beacons and charts very carefully to stay in safe waters.

She arrived in Nauvo and Rolling Swiss II was again fueled and cleaned from the outside, as this was our last port before Turku . Turku welcomed us with pouring rain. After a week of good weather – with much and sometimes cold wind – the weather could not spoil our good mood.

The last day was for cleaning and carrying out the inventory while the skipper filed his paperwork.  After a week of instruction and teamwork – and a few laughs of course! – we handed over “our” boat which had been our home for a week and had carried us safely from Stockholm to Turku.  We were a happy and proud crew!

Author: Daniela

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