Antipole cruises

Haugasund and Stavanger

Heading south from Bergen, we had difficult winds that rarely lived up to the forecasts. They were mostly very light, but sometimes we were hit by powerful squalls from several directions. That is not unusual amongst the high mountains, but we were some way off those. Presumably, it was spill-over from mountains further inland. As we got further out along the Bømlafjord, the wind improved and we had a good sail to Haugasund.

Haugasund is an important place in Norwegian history. It was the homeland of the Viking kings. King Harald Hørfagre, who united the petty kingdoms, is thought to be buried here. These days, Haugasund is a base for the off-shore industries and a large oil rig was evident.

Haugasund is based around several sounds with buildings on each side, giving them a canal-like feel. A road along the waterfront is lined with a dozen bars/eateries and it has a reputation for being very noisy at weekends. Fortunately, there is a new visitors’ pontoon which gave us some distance from the noise on Saturday night – Sunday morning.

Antipole on the new pontoons. Behind to the right, the waterfront lined with eateries.

The wind finally came right (despite the forecast) and we had a good sail south from Haugasund almost to Stavanger.  We stopped off just short at the island Line for two nights.

Line is run by the district of Ryfylke as a Friluftsråd.  It has a path to numerous picnic tables and BBQ hearths and by a jetty is a ‘nature’ toilet, waste and recycling bins.  While we were there, a service boat called to exchange the bins.  Ah!  Public services!

A group of parents also arrived to set up four bell tents ready for twenty children who would be camping on the island over the weekend.  We left before they arrived.

After Stavanger we will have a stretch of exposed coast with no shelter.  The weather forecast indicated we would have to wait a week or more for strong winds to abate.  So we decided to first make an excursion down the Høgsfjord and into the 12 nm Lysefjord.

We found a nice anchorage four miles up this otherwise inhospitable narrow fjord with towering rocky sides.  It is famous for Pulpit Rock, beloved of tourist brochures, which juts out 604m (1,980ft) over the fjord.  We viewed it from the dinghy from where it did not look so daunting!

After two nights, we had a bracing beat back up the Høgsfjord and into Stavanger.

In Stavanger we berthed close to where it is all happening but a safe distance from disturbance. We were busy with maintenance and laundry etc. We also visited the look-out tower and Gamle Stavanger – the old town with picturesque wooden houses.

When a cruise ship is in, there is an interesting contrast in scale between the ship and the old town just visible at its stern.

It looks like we have a short weather window tomorrow, so we will set off further south.

That’s the news for now. This year’s track is available here.

Love, Ynskje & Tony

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