Wednesday 13th August
Today we set out on the final family voyage of this Baltic cruise. The wind had dropped from yesterday’s challenging conditions, but was forecast to rise again in the afternoon. Accordingly, we chose a nearby island to visit.
One of the few island groups in this part of the archipelago that we had not visited yet was the Rödlöga Skärgård, the group of small islands to the East of Rödlöga itself.
The wind was forecast to stay in the south and/or west, so the tiny natural harbour of Lilla Anskäret seemed to be a good target. We covered the 6.5nm in an hour and a half, giving us a spirited sail on mainsail and staysail. We were easily able to weave between the rocks, altering course between a fetch, a reach and a run.
We had some excitement as we reached the harbour mouth at speed and rounded up to the wind right over the top of a shallow rock. We were none the wiser until we looked at our track on the gps!
Further excitement was had by Niki, who had an unplanned swim: the rock is particularly steep here and though it was easy to place Aurora’s bow am inch or two from the rock, our diminutive size meant a steep scramble up the rock. Niki jumped with a warp and simply slid into the water. Sympathy from the children consisted mostly of laughter and imitations of her surprised shriek. Apparently the water is colder today…
When we were moored safely, we had lunch and Alice had a swim (though she could not persuade any of the rest of us to join her). We then explored the island. Anskäret has a character of its own with heathland in its centre, though sadly we were anchored on the wrong side of the bay to walk there. We did watch the waves crash on the outer shore, as the wind had risen as forecast. Watching other boats out in the sound, we were glad to be moored securely in the lee of the rock. We also observed large bands of pinkish red in the granite bedrock, which gives this island group its name.