We motored all the way from Lauwersoog to Borkum in light winds.
We had been waiting for a weather window for a couple of days, but the wind was stuck in the northeast, exactly the direction we wanted to go. This meant that not only would we have to tack, but that the wind would be against any tidal streams that we used to help our progress. Wind against the tide kicks up waves, which are uncomfortable and slow us down as we had discovered in our last attempt.
There was a short period when the wind went westerly, but it was very strong and gusty so we decided to stay in port.
The best we could find was a brief window when the wind was really light, so wouldn’t affect us much. We don’t normally plan to rely on the motor but were fed up with waiting around so decided to go.
We left at 4:45am to catch the tide, and saw a lovely calm sunrise as we were heading out along the fairway behind the islands.
We were able to motor faster than expected so were early for the tidal stream along the coast, but after pushing against the last of the ebb for a couple of hours we gradually speeded up as the flood started. By the time we were in the Huibertsgat channel near the entrance to the river Ems we had over 2 knots of tide with us.
The sea was fairly flat, with just some swells to make us roll sometimes. Sadly I’d not reconnected the autopilot yet after rewriting the fuse board so we (mostly Catherine) had to hand steer the whole way.
We arrived at Borkum harbour several hours ahead of our tidal deadline of 1730, which was good because after we arrived the wind picked up – from the northeast of course.