We had a rendezvous with the rest of the rally fleet and needed to be in Mariehamn, Aland islands, before the end of the day. We quickly hoisted our Aland island courtesy flag, having inadvertently overlooked the fact that we were already in their waters the night before…
We had a slightly sticky departure from the berth, as our hook on the buoy had got bent out of shape, and the bow line when we released it got caught in the pontoon. Luckily both issues were resolved relatively quickly, and we made a clean get away.
It was a day of two halves – sailing and motor sailing, sunshine and rain. We managed a short distance with the cruising chute up, but a storm heading our way, meant we dropped it again quickly.
In the archipelago its best to give ferries the right of way – they go fast and they don’t deviate. As we approached a rather narrow channel, we realised that a ferry was bearing down on us, fast. We took the sensible option and moved out of its way.
Late afternoon the wind gave us a good lift and we had a great hour or so of sailing, making up to 7 knots.
We arrived into Mariehamn when the rally cocktail party was already in full swing on the pontoon. We berthed perfectly and joined the others on the pontoon – too late to take part in the cocktail creation competition.
It was then a late night visit to the supermarket in town, where a big party was going on. Suzanne was desperate to eat fish and chips, and despite checking all the restaurants and stalls at the fete, nothing remotely doing.
So it was fish fingers and oven chips from the supermarket. Which seemed like a great idea, but our gas ran out half way through cooking it! It was a very late dinner and an even later night. However Mariehamn was well worth a stopover, with a beautiful backdrop of the tall ship Pommern. As with many places on our whistlestop tour, we wish we’d had a day or two more to explore.
No chart of today’s visit unfortunately, as we were too late/tired to get a screenshot.
We covered 42 nautical miles in just under 9 hours, averaging around 4.8 knots – and used 3 gallons of fuel.