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From Stockholm to Flensberg.


Millesgarden Sculpture Garden, Stockholm.

The Stockholm Archipelago, a cruising heaven.

Klas discovers Vikings don't wear dreads.

Bombing range biking was a new adventure for us.

Tanker in a bottle.

The Baltic Sea, Pt. 3

July 30th, 2010

Stockholm 59 19 N 18 07 E

We are tied up in Navishamnen marina on Djurgarden, an island park playground for Stockholm, a city of islands, museums and Nobel prizes. The tourist guides all it the 'Capital of Scandinavia'. This fits. It has palaces, a lovely old town with narrow winding streets, and modern glass and steel buildings lining its many waterfronts. We are busy trying to see as much of it as we can while waiting for our visit from veteran crew members, John and Gail Ward. This year's sailing from island to island in sheltered waters could not be more different than last year's bashing into icy seas in Svalbard looking for polar bears. That took its toll on our bodies and boat.

August 5th, 2010

Kobinger 58 58 N 18 10 E

John and Gail have come and gone. They arrived at Navishamnen form the airport just before nine. Gail slipped as she stepped on board, falling on her shoulder. The emergency room doctor confirmed that it was fractured it in several places. The Swedish treatment calls for letting it hang in a Velrco sling until it heals itself vs. the US surgery with multiple screws. Gail, fortified by pain killers, gamely visited the sites with us for two days before she and John flew home.

We are back on our counter clockwise Baltic exploration and are now visiting the southern islands of the Stockholm Archipelago on our way to Germany and Denmark. The water is cooler than in Finland and this has shortened the swims. The islands are pine covered rock with blueberry patches here and there. Many are owned by Stockholm County. The island supervisors are farmers. After letting the islands go back to nature which resulted in a tangled wilderness the definition was changed to let small farms cut woods and let cattle keep the grass controlled. County owned holiday villages allow 'ordinary' people enjoy the beauty of the land. Regular ferry service speed Stockholm citizens from downtown to the vast maze peaceful islands less than an hour away.

August 9, 2010

Visby Gotland

Visby is a lovely hanseatic city, one of a league of city states formed as free market around 1300. These are great places to sail into because the old city with its restaurants and shops converted out of ancient stone warehouses wrap around the harbor. Visby was established by Germans and Danes who appropriated the land and built city walls to protect their bulging warehouses form the native Swedish islanders.

We arrived in Visby during 'Medieval Week'. It was a startling site to see the huge ferries arrive to land legions of knights, princesses, monks and maids dressed in period costume wheeling suitcases and talking on cell phones. Activities included jousting, sword fights, archery contests and pig roasts. The city was packed and festive.

After two medieval days we were ready for exercise and took off on our bikes to visit a small harbor north of Visby. Sweden is bike friendly. A paved bike path followed the highway. Thirty minutes later we turned off onto a side road toward the sea. We passed by some red and yellow signs in Swedish and continued on our traffic free way. As we progressed the road deteriorated and the terrain turned into patches of crushed concrete ruins between forests and pastures. An hour later we came to a barbed wire fence blocking our path to our destination. We headed to the beach and found a way around the restrictions. Just before we reached our destination we came to one more set of fences. After sneaking through we turned around to see pictures of bombs, mines and shells with a faded English translation announcing a bombing range and warning that trespassers would be prosecuted.

- Click here for Part 2 -




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