Amsterdam to Volendam – 16nm
Not such an early start as it’s not far to go, Debby took me to Albert Heijn to do some grocery shopping, the heavy stuff in their dinghy, and then we were off. Boomerang called the bridge to open and we followed through. Got through the heavy shipping parts and were tied up waiting for the lock, when we were told that the bridge just up further wasn’t working and wouldn’t be open until 1500!! OK, so that gives us 4 hours to wait. We thought we would be waiting before the lock, but they let us through and then fortunately there was a long waiting pontoon the other side. We tied up, had some lunch and settled in to wait. Boomerang came and took Phil and Narridy ashore, but I wanted to do some sorting on the boat, still hadn’t really got resettled since K&T left.
Finally just before 3pm all the boats who had collected in this area motored off towards the bridge..and then the hustling began. OK, so not really hustling, but lots of boats wanting to get through the bridge all at
the same time. It was quite a squeeze, then on the other side, there were heaps of boats waiting to come back through the other way!! WE all got through and settled out to sail across to Volendam. Up the channel first and then across the chanel, waiting of course for the barges to pass, and then on. Boomerang could point higher than us, so they made a direct line, we had to go a little to the right, and then tack back. Happy to let Boomerang get in and settled and then raft off them. A good spot too, right on the main street of Volendam.
Off to explore the town and then dinner on board Boomerang
Volendam to Hoorn – 8nm
Had until lunch time to explore Volendam further and sample some traditional Pannenkoeken (Dutch pancakes) with the Boomerang boys and Narridy, Phil sampled the local seafood with John, and then it was off to Hoorn. Once again, not a long trip, a beautiful little sail into Hoorn and on arrival, filled up with fuel and then tied off against the town wall. Not tidal
here so don’t have to worry about movement against the wall. Hoorn is a beautiful town with quite a large shopping area tucked back just a bit and plenty of old buildings. Once again, we just rafted off against Boomerang. There was room on the wall, but futher back or on the other side…this we way could cook hamburgers and just eat on boomerang…a good dinner once again. Narridy had a family friend come to visit and the boys came across for the promised ‘movie night’. John and Phil went for a canal cruise….and got slightly sidetracked!!
Hoorn to Harlingen – 43nm
An early start this morning as we’ve got a good distance to travel. In company with Boomerang until Enkhuizen where we had a short stop and then it was across the Ijsselmeer to the next bridge and lock. We just motored as the wind was on the nose and very light, Boomerang hoisted their MPS, so we got ahead a bit. Then once we arrived we pretty much got straight through the lock and bridge without too much of a wait. We knew Boomerang would catch
up as they had previously started their motor and by the time we were on the other side of the bridge, they were alredy in the lock. However, for some reason they had a very long wait before they were able to get through…and with a strong current we were almost at Harlingen before they got out the lock.
And then the fun started. For some reason we arrived at Harlingen at the same time as ALL the other boats. Then you must wait for bridge 1 to open, go through that and then wait for bridge 2. There was pushing, shoving, some aggressive behaviour from the professional boats and then some directed at us as we didn’t’ cross under the bridge when the light turned red…also there was no room to go under the bridge as one of the larger ferries was in the way. Finally we got through both bridges and tied up against the wall. Not long after we tied up, Boomerang came in and tied up a couple of boats behind us….and then the boats kept coming. A long weekend, + sunshine = all the boats come out to play!! We were rafted
up 3 and 4 deep in this tiny little harbour space.
And it was tidal…at least a 2 metre drop, so we had to keep our lines slack..a bit tricky when you have 2 other boats hanging off you!! Dinner on board and then John and Phil went off to explore a bit further.
I had quite a sleepless night, getting up to check our lines every couple of hours to make sure they were right with the changing tide. At the bottom of the tide I had to ease our midships line, and then knew it would be fine on the rising tide…however that was at 0400!!!!!!!
Harlingen to Vlieland - 17nm
Just a bit challenging getting out of the marina, many of the boats had left earlier this morning so not so squeezy. However there were still a few of us going out..including Boomerang, through the first bridge and then a short wait for the second bridge. Finally we were out in the channel..crossing to the Dutch island..Vlieland. Boomerang was in the lead and we were just following them. We were both
just sailing on our heady and with the current were doing about 6kts. There were heaps of boats sailing way up ahead and then more sailing with us and behind us. Boats everywhere!! About ¾ of the way across, Boomerang suddenly furled their heady and started motoring, then I got a message from Debby to do the same and follow close behind as they’d heard the marina was full but Seaquest had arranged spaces for us!! So off we went. It was quite easy to get into the marina, but heaps of boats followed us in. Boomerang was allocated a space right away, rafted up against another boat. WE thought the Harbour master would then get us to raft off them…but no. He started allocating spaces to the heap of boats that entered after us. WE know Boomerang had told him we didn’t want to squeeze in down the back of the marina as we had no bow thruster, but didn’t know then where he was going to put us. After circling around and trying to dodge all the boats still coming in, we were finally allocated a boat to raft up to….right out the front. Easy to get to
and very friendly neighbours who helped us tie up against them.
Then we went off to find the new Seaquest! They were friends of Boomerang and we met them in Mauritius and had bumped into them quite a bit on the rest of our journey. Since their return they’ve sold their yacht Seaquest and have bought a very nice motorboat that they’ve named Seaquest! That night we all ventured out to the campground for dinner. Great meal, but so packed that it took ages to get our dinner. A very late night!!
Spent the next few days in the company of Boomerang and Seaquest exploring the island by foot and Zodi (out to the sandbanks where there were heaps of seals sunning themselves on the opposite bank..when we came closer to have a look, heaps of them raced into the water on the opposite side and swam over to us to have a closer look…it was quite funny – like we were the things to be looked at)
Beautiful,. Sunny, warm weather, so really enjoying being in shorts and Tshirt again, and finally getting a bit of colour back into my
skin. So great being back in cruising company again, sharing dinners, and exploring together.
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