Antipole cruises

Afloat for the 2019 Season!

On 24th April we flew from Gatwick to Copenhagen, together with four large bags in the hold as well as two heavy cabin bags.  It is just as well that it is so easy to catch the direct train to Karlskrona in Sweden from within the airport. With plentiful luggage trolleys, we could wheel the luggage right up to the train door.  The trolleys just stand around on the platform!  In the UK this would not be, for fear of them being pushed onto the tracks.

It was good to return to Karlskrona and the friendly Arkipelag Hotel that we stayed in last autumn.  Karlskrona continues to impress us.  As mentioned in a previous post, it is the main base for the Swedish Navy.  In its formative time, Sweden’s empire included the whole of Finland, Kerelia, and much of what is now Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.  There are many fine grand buildings befitting a great naval power and, these days, classy shops.  Everything is so clean. Even a large car park was being scrubbed with huge machines.   By comparison, Portsmouth as the UK’s main naval port does not fair well.  Karlskrona’s town square is claimed to be the largest in Europe.  A train line once ran under the square and then under another fine building before entering the navel docks.  We managed to make time to visit the interesting naval museum on Stumholmen.

The boatyard Saltövarv is a hive of activity fitting out for the new season. We have had to work hard getting the boat ready.  The launch date was slightly earlier than we intended as 1st May is a public holiday here.  As well as the routine preparations, Tony has been busy installing various equipment we had brought out with us and replacing the rudder bearings.  Ynskje has worked very hard cleaning and polishing the hull and deck, which had become stained with we no not what.

We had to spend a couple of days trying to change a Campingaz cylinder without success.  Fortunately, we managed get our Finnish cylinder refilled with propane in Karlshamn, 45km west of Karlskrona.

30th April was launch day.  We were expecting the large crane that had lifted us out. We were surprised to see a smaller crane turn up.  Rather than swinging Antipole all the way, this crane lifted her out of her winter birth and then drove to the water’s edge with Antipole swinging above.  Our 11.6 tonnes was close to the 12 tonne limit the operator was comfortable with, so we were glad when she was safely in the water.

As ever, it is lovely to be afloat again.  When out of the water, Antipole is a dead weight.  Afloat, she comes alive again, even in harbour.  We have completed our rigging and preparations and are now ready to sail forth.  We look forward to opportunities to relax and hang out after all the work.

Tony & Ynskje

5 thoughts on “Afloat for the 2019 Season!

  1. Ettie

    Good luck for a wonderful season! Look forward to hearing all about it and to getting together again when your back. Love from Ettie and Jonathan xx

  2. Robin Gooders

    Have a great season. We will be out to Germany after the May Day Bank Holiday. Maybe our paths will cross later in the season. Wishing you fair winds etc Robin and Jane Grey wanderer

  3. Alison Naisby

    Thanks for the news & fascinating photos. All best wishes for your trip this season with favourable winds & tides.
    Alison & David xx

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