Sassnitz under Jury Rig
16 July 2012 – at Anchor off E Rugen
From Krosslin at 10.30; having said farewell to our neighbour Wim in Symphony. The friendliness of the harbour has been great. The little shop was open, and I got some limited grocery. They didn’t have fresh milk, or bread (rolls came from the bistro.) The harbour master returned 20 euros deposit in cash to me – but got another owner to sign for a 40 euro receipt!!
The wind was blowing about 15kn in the harbour, and we set a reef before setting out. We creamed along on a close reach across the Greiffswasser, down the narrow channels. The weather got blacker – a squall was clearly on the way. Just as Roger getting his oilies on it hit – wind up to 45 knots in an instant, with driving rain and minimal vis. Fortunately we were out of the channel, and had some (but not a lot) of sea room. My big fear was going aground. We reefed the jib further, and then put a second reef in the main. But the wind was just too much for the jib: it blew out horizontally along two seams, at the head and about a third of the way down. We wound the remains in and sat out the storm. Water everywhere! I took a green one down the front and then a few moments later down the back – no time to get the hood up on the oilskins. But true to form, within an hour or so it was back to blue skies, and 15 knots of wind! Neither of us have ever experienced such a squall and reflect that we should have been much more urgent in reducing sail earlier, and further.
We set the staysail, shook out the reefs, and sailed gently down towards Sassnitz. En route there was another black cloud (but smaller this time) and so the mainsail reef went back in in good time. The W wind go up to about 30 knots, before dropping back to 20-25kn. Sassnitz harbour did not have much shelter, facing due west, and we wanted to get the old sail off, and assess the damage. Roger identified a super anchorage just west of the ferry terminal, and we anchored in 4.5m, off a sandy beach. After supper, the wind dropped to about 8kn and we managed to get the sail folded on the side deck. The spare is smaller, (100% rather than 145%) but will get us back – provided no more heavy squalls!
Came in this morning 17 July to Sassnitz, and are lying alongside the pier. It’s a small town with minimal shops – but a Netto , so have been able to stock up with necessities. The plan is to leave early tomorrow, Wednesday, to make the most of a brief SW – S wind to get across to Denmark – either Klintholm, or Stubbekoping. Our Polish neighbour (“I am not German” when we said danke schon) is off to Koben Hafen and plans to set off at 6am. We’ll be a tad later, maybe 8am, aiming to arrive before nightfall.
Sassnitz is interesting. As with other towns in E Germany, there is a lot of building work going on. The building work appears to be holiday homes – the season can only be 8-10 weeks, I would have thought – and the laying of cobbled streets with granite. We walked up into town – up a steep flight of new-ish stairs in the cliff. The stairs had a waterfall beside them that smelt of sewage (agricultural, as Julian would say. Despite the environmental challenges of an inland sea, where the water takes 25 years to get out into the N Sea, and salinity is diluted to 8%, Germany is still discharging untreated water into the Baltic!
Despite best efforts, have not been able to track down the harbour master to pay our dues!