Selim's Logbook
About my sailing activities, and more ...


by Selim E. on Fri, 21st, Sep 2018

It is still dark when I start the engine of my car and head for crossing of lake number 3 – Lake Atter (Attersee). Weather reports have told me that I must expect a base wind of 4-6kn from south and gusts up to 10kn. From my research with Google Maps and some phone calls to local harbors I found that a public slipway exists in Unterach (southernmost town) and a private one in Schörfling (northernmost town). When I arrive at Unterach, I am pretty alone at that time of the day. I buy a coffee at the Strandcafe and then I start preparing my Weta. Meanwhile some motorboaties have arrived at the slipway and start watering their boats.


Planned and actual track for crossing

At around 10:30 I am in the water ready to start my South-to-North crossing of Austria’s third largest lake and the largest completely located in Austria (compared to Lake Neusiedl and Lake Constance which Austria shares with other countries). A breeze with around 8kn lets me get excited as I did not expect that much wind. A cool breeze is blowing from South and after a mile suddenly changes direction to North. It is magnificent to plough through the dark blue waters of Lake Attersee.


High mountains of southern part of Lake Atter, Sechserkogel

Again, at that time of the day I am the first to sail -except the motor boaties. I extremely enjoy the unique scenery with sharp mountains surrounding this part of the lake. It is such a contrast to my first crossings where the shoreline appeared mostly flat and monotone. I proceed quite fast until I reach Buchenort – a small village on the western shore. While tacking against the wind I pass by the deepest point of the lake with around 170m. Then, wind decreases and I slow down to about one knot. The lull continues and I decide to paddle. I developed a technique where I set the rudder a little out of midships which allows me to paddle on one side of the middle hull. While paddling I achieve a speed at around 2 knots. Some intermediate gusts let me proceed until latitude Zell am Attersee. At this time of the day I have already spent around 3 hours on water and I am extremely disappointed when a complete lull sets in. I literally pray to god (I am an atheist!) to send me a breeze. Imagine how speechless I was when suddenly a motor boat with a white haired and bearded man (god?) appears alongside and offers me to tow me until village Attersee. In my desperate situation I say yes although I have the feeling that I disqualified myself from my own goal “to cross Lake Attersee by sail”.


God? ;) giving me a lift

After fifteen minutes we arrive at latitude Attersee and I get dropped in the middle of a breeze which blows me towards Weyregg. There the wind increases suddenly to 10 and more knots. Now, I am able to run with wind abeam at about 6knots speed. - what a joy! Due to time restrictions I decide to head towards Litzlberg where I intend to draw my boat out from water at a public beach. As I approach the shore I spot a small sailing club near the beach with a slipway. Not knowing whether they let me ashore I decide to give it try and start steering my boat into the small and shallow harbor. Luckily, an extremely friendly club manager let me go ashore for free and even offers me a hand for pulling out my boat. At 4pm I call a taxi to bring me to my car in Unterach.

Rethinking the day and my prior crossings I decide to pay more attention with regard to the wind for future lake crossings. A stable and gentle breeze (wind force 3) is the minimum requirement for future crossing, especially for the large lakes ahead – Lake Constance and Lake Geneva. However, I am proud and satisfied to have accomplished the crossing of the third lake within two weeks.

Trip details
Trip length: 10.8nm (20.1km)
Hours on water: .hours (10:40 until 15:40)
Start location: Unterach Strandbad
End location: Litzlberg, Segelclub Kammer

Some more photos here...


Early morning drive towards Lake Atter, sails in the back


Unterach harbor and slipway


Me switching on GoPro


High mountains of southern part of Lake Atter, Schoberstein and Sechserkogel


Me and mountain Schoberstein in the back


Meeting a gull on latitude Steinbach


Mountainous east shore of Lake Atter


Tacking in almost no winds


Catching light airs with screetcher

Read about the "Seven Lakes Crossing" project..



by Selim E. on Tue, 18th, Sep 2018

At 6 am I get up to slip the boat into water. I have to paddle to get out of the little harbor. I am completely alone in the harbor except a beautiful white heron who keeps watch on the breakwater. I have to paddle towards the open water of Lake Balaton to catch the easterly morning breeze. My first way point is Tihany peninsula which separates the northern part from the southern part of the lake. A light wind blows at about 5 knots but I experience rather high waves. As I approach Tihany peninsula I enjoy my breakfast and the beautiful scenery of the peninsula with the monastery on top of a hill and the little ferry harbor. I keep an eye on the frequent ferries crossing my way as I pass by the peninsula at 9am. Meanwhile also other sail boats pop up on the lake.


Leaving Sziofok

South of Tihany wind force increases and I am happy to proceed fast towards my next way point – the Badacsony mountain. Badacsony mountain has a peculiar shape and is therefore easily recognizable even from far away. It is located on the north shore of the lake and is famous for it’s wine and vineyards.


Approaching Tihany

While I head towards Badascony I get an impression of the immense size of the lake. As the shore of Tihany slowly fades away I still cannnot see the shore at the southwestern end of the lake. In some moments I feel like I am at sea. Water is kind of cloudy but is not muddy as the water of Lake Neusiedl.


Approaching Badascony

At latitude of village Balatonszepezd wind decreases and I somehow get a little worried whether I get to Kesthely before sunset – it is 2pm and I have only done have my way. Now I start to think about alternatives. I decide to proceed with my plan until 4pm hoping that wind will increase and give me the chance to arrive at Kesthely before sunset. After almost 9 hours on water and almost no wind I decide to lay down for a rest. I wake up as a light gust shakes the boat and makes sails rustle. With a light breeze in the neck I proceed until Badascony mountain as again wind decreases. As I am on the boat for already 10 hours I decide to finish my trip on the southern shore of lake Balaton. I change course towards Fonyód where I have spotted a small yacht harbor on Google Maps. With wind from abeam I am able to increase speed even with a light breeze.


Approaching Fonyod

Around 5:30 pm I arrive at a beautiful small and private yacht harbor with a slipway. Although private and locked down, an elderly extremely friendly couple helps me bringing my boat ashore.
I call a taxi to get back to Sziofok, pick up my car and trailer and drive back to pick up my boat in Fonyód. It is 9pm when I start to drive back home.

Trip details
Trip length: 24.2 nm (44.81km)
Hours on water: 11hours (6:30 until 17:30)
Start location: Siófok, Ezüstpart Yacht Harbor, Calypso Restaurant Harbor
End location: Fonyód TVSK-Port Lacaj Yacht Harbor

Some more photos ...


Fully rigged WETA and sleepy me before going on water at 6:15am


Fully rigged WETA on water


Passing Tihany peninsula


Heading for Badacsony mountain


Some weed on board


Packing my WETA at night

Read about the "Seven Lakes Crossing" project..



by Selim E. on Mon, 17th, Sep 2018

Next step in my Seven Lakes Crossing project – Lake Balaton in Hungary. The largest (concerning km²) lake in Central Europe. Planning required much more time than for Lake Neusiedl but it is extremely exiting to delve into the facts around lake Balaton.

My planning is starting to become a procedure. First task is to plan a theoretical route spanning the most remote points of the lake. Decision on which point is the starting point depends on the actual weather forecast. I try to set course in windward direction. Second task is to locate yacht harbors that allows to slip my boat in and out of water. This task involves a lot of research with Google Maps satellite map and then (third task) I try to contact local harbors, yacht and sailing clubs to find out if they allow me to use their ramps. Ideally, I find a ramp that is publicly accessible even in early morning or evening as I am not able to plan exactly the time of my arrival. Fourth, I have to find out whether there are means of transportation to get back from my trip’s end point to the my car and trailer.


Planned and actual track for crossing Lake Balaton

Finding a slipway at lake Balaton is quite difficult. First problem is that I hardly can reach somebody at yacht harbors and sailing clubs as high season is over and some of the facilities there are not anymore in operation. Second problem is that if I reach somebody people are reluctant to speak German or English. However, after a while I find an Austrian sailing instructor at “Sail and Surf” who kindly gives valuable advice on Lake Balaton. Finally, with no clear information on whether and where I may find a accessible slipway I start my journey. However, I trust in Hungarian hospitality and comradeship among sailors. At 11:30 I leave for lake Balaton and after a 3 hours drive I arrive at Laguna Yacht Club in Balatonfűzfő. The yacht club at the northern end of Lake Balaton is extremely charming. The lady in charge there explains me that I may use the club’s ramp but it costs me about 10 Euros. Unfortunately I find out that the yacht club closes early in the afternoon, so I will not be able to pickup my car after the crossing. I decide to choose a different harbor on the south shore. With help of Siofok’s harbor master I finally arrive at a small yacht harbor south of Siofok. The ramp is privately owned by a restaurant but the owner lets me use it for free. After a pizza and a coke at the restaurant I rigg my boat and prepare everything for the journey next day. I enjoy an extremely beautiful sunset after a long day and go to sleep in the rear of my car.


Preparing WETA


Enjoying sunset


Yacht Harbor in Sziofok where I started crossing


WETA fully rigged on land

Read about the "Seven Lakes Crossing" project..



by Selim E. on Mon, 10th, Sep 2018

Start of my Seven Lakes Crossing project. I decided to start with my home lake Neusiedler See. I spent a weekend full of route planning and made some phone calls to local harbors and sailing schools regarding slipways to take my Weta Trimaran in and out of the water. Due to weather and slipway availability I decided to start the crossing in Neusiedl’s Eastern Port and finish in Mörbisch. I did want to go to the Hungarian part of Lake Neusiedl, but the southernmost part is inaccessible as it is a protected area of a National Park. It is theoretically possible to access Fertörakos, a Hungarian harbor south of Mörbisch, but I could not find out how depth conditions are between Mörbisch and Fertörakos. So I opted for Mörbisch as destination which I know quite well.


Planned and actual track for crossing

Early in the morning I head towards Neusiedl by car and arrive there at about 9:00am. After setting up my Weta I take her down the narrow ramp of Neusiedl East Harbor. Wind blows at approximately 8kn from North. I turn her around and with wind from backwards I follow the narrow channel through the reed and harbor towards the open lake. Arriving in the open lake I hoist the main and immediately start my route towards Mörbisch. Wind is perfect until latitude of Podersdorf harbor. Then I experience a lull followed by a 180° turn in wind direction. When wind has turned again by 180° I proceed towards Rust Bay with light winds and then after Rust Bay with around 8kn wind again from North/North-East. During the whole journey sight is brilliant and I can see distant mountains like Schneeberg in the West. During the part with light wind a myriad of different fly species populate my boat. Apart from very small gray flies covering my hulls also a larger species of flies covers sails and my whole body. They even cover my face and I am not sure if I swallowed one or another. At the beginning of my journey across the lake – around midday - I am almost completely alone on the lake. In the afternoon several other sailing boats are visible. At around 16:30 I finish my journey in Mörbisch. It is a strange feeling as it is the first time I have spent 5 hours non-stop on my dinghy trimaran and it is the first step of a quite old plan I have had – the crossing of the seven largest lakes in central Europe.

Trip details
Trip length: 12.47 nm (23.1km)
Hours on water: 5hours (11:30 until 16:30)
Start location: Neusiedl East Harbor
End location: Mörbisch Segelschule Lang

See some photos here...


Preparing for the crossing in Neusiedl


Car and Trailer


Half rigged boat


Fully rigged boat in water


Leaving Neusiedl


Waiting for the next breeze in the middle of the lake


Flies everywhere


Approaching the southern end- Rust island


Arriving in Mörbisch

Read about the "Seven Lakes Crossing" project..



by Selim E. on Sat, 1st, Sep 2018

Final check of boat. We have breakfast and pack our stuff and leave boat around 10am. Before leaving for home we clean up the outer side of the breakwater from plastic debris. We collect around six mid size bags of plastic but are from finished. While we clean the breakwater base staff do not care as their own coffee cups get blown away by wind. I beg the base manager to be more careful and to advise his stuff. He says that he is aware of the problem but his people do not care. At around midday we leave Murter towards Austria. A heavy thunderstorm is approaching and as we leave heavy rain sets in and lasts for about 2 hours.


Plastic pollution in Jezera marina


Breakwater in Jezera marina

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by Selim E. on Fri, 31st, Aug 2018

Wind again light in the morning, dying away around midday. In the morning we explore two artificial caves at the western head of Tratinska bay. The caves have probably erected as part of a fortification. When we enter the caves several bats suddenly flap around our heads. Caves are split into several tunnels after entrance but do not lead too far into the rocks, only 5-10 meters. We leave towards Jezera Marina around 3 pm and arrive at around 6pm at Jezera port. We set sails for a sudden short easterly breeze. Needed to fill up Diesel but only 12 liters. Base manager checks boat. Dinner again at Konoba Leut.


Crew snorkeling
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Tagged with: logbook, Sailing, Croatia,


by Selim E. on Thu, 30th, Aug 2018

Wind decreasing at around midday. We leave Piskera under engine towards Zirje – our last station. We arrive there at around 6pm. No sailing today as wind is too weak. We moor our boat on a buoy in Tratinska bay. Friendly guy charges 200 Kuna for buoy. He speaks German and tells us stories. Brilliant night sky.

.

Tagged with: logbook, Sailing, Croatia,


by Selim E. on Wed, 29th, Aug 2018

Wind again fresh. We do another walk on top of the cliffs. Swimming and Snorkeling until midday. We leave in early afternoon towards Piskera. Again lovely downwind sailing. We sail in southern direction between Kornat island and the western Kornati islands. Today my brother notices that one of the lead pulleys for jib is completely worn off and does not turn anymore. I have noticed a certain resistance when pulling in Genoa sheet before but could not think of such a defect. Fortunately the Genoa sheets glides quite easily round the pulley. However, I consider this a major and safety threatening defect to be included in the logbook.


Sunset

North of island Piskera we leave the inner channel and sail towards the open sea to be able to enter Piskera port from West. Preparations for berthing take quite long as I have to explain all the necessary to crew. Around 5pm we take berth in Marina Piskera. It is good to be in harbor after two day at sea. Magnificient sunset.


Piskera
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by Selim E. on Tue, 28th, Aug 2018

Wind is still fresh. Around 12kn. Before breakfast I go snorkeling and I discover a lobster fishing cage on the seafloor at around 5m depth. The cage looks like it is abandoned. Several fishes are trapped inside. I decide to return with the girls to free the fish. After breakfast we return to the cage and try to encourage the fish (sea breams) to leave the cage by its small entry. All but one fish (the largest) manage to do so. The large one panics and is not able to find the exit but pushes hard against the lattice. My brother finally lifts the cage to the surface and tries to push him out. As the bream has already hurt himself I finally decide to grab him by his rear fin and pull him out. Happily? he disappears in the blue. Around midday we leave the bay towards Telasica bay on island Dugi Otok. Lovely sailing with wind force 3-4. I like the small passage between Kornat and Dugi Otok and the lake like feeling when entering Telasica bay. While tacking northwards towards Mir bay I am happy about the boats upwind performance.


Daughter at work

We moor the boat at a buoy near Mir. After dinner we set out with the dinghy to explore lake Mir. As we arrive at the lake it has already got dark. However, we walk around the beautiful and quiet lake with our torches on. At the southern end of the lake a small path leads to the western shore of Dugi Otok. We discover a field of stone piles and add our own. On our way back moon rises in South East and lightens our way through the woods.


Stone piles at lake Mir

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Tagged with: logbook, Sailing, Croatia,


by Selim E. on Mon, 27th, Aug 2018

Clear sky and wind force decreasing but still strong with up to 25 kn in the harbor. At around 11am we depart from Marina Jezera and head towards Zut. We motor until the southern head of island Murter and then set sails (reefed). With 12 to 20kn wind from north east we are able to sail quite fast. Gusts of about 28kn. Finally wind changes to a more northern direction which forces us to tack towards Pasman. We decide to stay in Landin bay. We moor our boat on a buoy. After quite a long day with a lot of sailing we are happy to take a swim. Girls go ashore with dinghy.


Brother at helm

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