Day 47. 17th of April. Store Björkskär til Gryt. About 45 km, 6.2 km/hr average speed.
We are now in an area that Hélène and Christian know like their back pocket. We looked at one of their favorite camp sites yesterday, but we decided we needed a bit softer ground than “svaberg” (rock). It’s a combination of too old bodies and too thin mattresses that stops us.
Today Hélène had tipped us that there is a paddleable passage between Hasslö and Slädö. There is. Just. The sea level in the Baltic sea is about 30 cm below reference level these days and that matters for kayaks with about 30 cm draft.
Anyway, we found the passage, and there was maybe 3 cm water to spare. It saved us a couple of km of paddling. Very welcome and much appreciated.
Then it was due north for the day. The day started out with fantastic conditions, sun and light winds. Eventually the wind picked up, and paddling got a bit harder. We pushed on nevertheless, because tomorrow we will have to paddle in 8 m/s winds. We plan to make them tail winds, and since they will be westerly, no significant waves will build. But still, we figured it was better to paddle 1 km today in NW 5m/s winds, than to postpone that to tomorrow when a slight change in direction may give us hard work.Today convinced us that spring is here with double digit temperatures becoming common. But still ice clings on to north facing cliffs, remnants of frozen sea spray that must have been meters thick.
We are also getting a little blasé when it comes to eagles. Today we saw six or seven. Mostly they circle overhead, but today we saw two that was playing as they descended at landed on a small rock in the sea. They were not welcomed. Two gulls tried to chase them, but the eagles did not pay them any attention.
Eagles are supposed to be the king of the birds. Like many other regents, they seem to be not particularly popular amongst their subjects. But who cares, they are eagles and the gulls are not.
We have almost emptied the boats for food and snacks and have just enough water to get to Arkösund, where we have booked us in for two nights at the hostel.
Thursday will be a day of eating, shopping and washing clothes. Maybe wash the clothes twice…
One day’s hard work and we are there, and the forecast promises a good weather window for crossing to Oxelösund on Friday. So we think we are in good shape. Touch wood and weather permitting!