Öland August 2014

Wow, wow, wow! What a cool few days!!

Neil, Charlie and myself headed down to Öland for the ‘last sail of freedom’ before we headed back to work on Monday. We booked a ‘Stugor’ (Cabin) at Haga Park Camping for one night. We planned to just do night and then head back, but ended up staying for a second night as the predictions for the weather and wind on the final day was so good.

I dont recall the place we stayed at for the second night, but I will ask Neil to post the location and info as its the best place to stay if you are sailing at Haga Park. It was cheaper and much more modern and fresh than Haga Park Camping… so we totally recommend it!

Charlie was out in the mornings and when the wind dropped, then Neil and I headed out in the afternoons. I just love this place… love the water and love the people. It really reminds me of the early days of sailing down at Portland Harbour in the UK… chilled, relaxed and safe!

I was blasting away on my 7 metre sail, using the carbon board. The wind didnt really get up enough to get out the small board and smaller sail, but I still have lots of fun!

Charlie can now sail, on his own and do a turn… really great work! Amazing what a year can do… last year it was hard for him to get the sail out the water, now its easy… i am a proud Dad! 🙂 (Heres a few pics!)

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Öland June 2014

We did a DAY TRIP down to Öland to see if it was worth doing. Im getting really disappointed with the Stockholm locations, it seems to be a lot of driving and hunting for places that often offer long walks to the beach and gusty conditions. The idea is that maybe its worth just heading down to Öland every now and then, rather than regular hunts for spots around Stockholm?!

Anyhow… its was a good (but long) day and the wind was ok. But definitely worth going for a few days as a 4.5hr drive is pretty harsh! 😉

Day 7: Heading back home

20130628-093034.jpgIncredible weather overnight! Thunder, rain, wind, cats and even the odd dog thrown in for good measure! Nothing to report… Just a full day, no wind, no sun and so we decided to head back north and check in at home.

Good news is that we are heading down the west coast in the next couple of weeks, so more riveting, in depth, conceptual blogging coming soon! Andyc 😉

Day 6: Time to read a book

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Breath in…. Breath out…. and…. Relax… That’s the kind of day we’ve been having on the Öland chilled east coast today! The wind switched to the north over night and never really picked up above 4-5m/s today, just as well as we were both feeling overworked from the last few days of hard sailing. I went out on the water in the afternoon… Got planning once… But nothing very exciting.

Incase you ever visit this place it’s worth knowing that there is nothing to do on the island except windsurf and relax. We took a trip in the van to the south of the island and stopped in at a few places on the way, it’s full of really strange shops that are like a step back into the 1970’s… Very odd and very strange to be honest. But anyhow we’ve had a lovely day of good ‘van cooked’ food and relaxing on the beach.

Not sure what the forecast is for tomorrow, it’s just started raining, but let’s hope it’s a hot one! Andyc

Day 5: Power Slalom at Haga Park

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What a day! Top fun and top speeds! I’ve spent the afternoon thundering around the bay in high winds with my 7.0 Maui RXS sail…. Loads of power and super fast turns. I wanted to work on my gybes today, as I can get the planning going into them, but don’t always manage to keep the board on the plane during the exit.

I was basically not committing myself to the foot change and weight shift enough half way through the turn… So this was meaning the board was going into the turn fast, then the back was digging into the water and so was loosing speed towards the end of the turn, where as when you switch the feet and weight correctly, you balance the board and keep it driving through the turn and out the other end! The other thing I found useful was to get my body really low just after switching the sail; this allowed the wind to power into the board and get the speed up quickly as you exit. Can’t wait to get out again tomorrow!

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Well today it was dead at 1000… No wind.. Forecast said ‘no wind’… So no wind. But sure enough the wind increased steadily between 1100-1400 until we had at least 10m/s… And by the time we left, around 1730, it was really blowing!!! All to do with this unique location that ALWAYS gets good wind at 1300 everyday day… Something to do with the land/sea temperature difference… Not sure but Wow!

Elin hit the water again today, we went out together for the first hour and we worked on some turns and the sailing position… This paid off, as when it started blowing Elin was really sailing well, putting into practice the things she’d trained in the lighter morning winds.

Now it’s around 2100 and we are shattered… Time for bed! Night all! Andyc

Day 4: Still loving… Haga Park

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After a scrabbled egg breakfast we headed down to the beach to find a wonderfully sunny and windy day! The carpark is around 20 meters from the shoreline and ONLY windsurfers can use the carpark (love it… There is a big sign as you drive in… About time us wondsurfers got the VIP treatment!), we were there at around 1000 and so managed to get a spot right next too the grass where we can rig up.

Elin took out a hire board today, she’s 20 weeks pregnant so we thought maybe she should take it easy ;), so with a nice big board and a 4sqm sail off she sailed! The wind was around 7-10m/s and this increased at around 1pm. Elin did a great job… We did a bit of sailing together… Lovely day!

I’ve been on my 5.5 today and its been perfect, there was a few dips in the wind during the afternoon, but managed to finish off the day with some speedy runs and planning carve gybes, you can’t ask for more than that!

Pretty addicted to this place.. Not sure We’re ever going to leave… Let’s see what the next couple of days bring, we still haven’t ruled out popping over to the west coast for a few days, depends on the weather! (Remember: we can’t drive in rain… Wipers on the housevan are still not working…amazing!!!) Andyc

Day 3: Haga Park, Öland

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We drove across to the west coast of the island today, heading for a legendary windsurfing location called Haga Park. I’d read a lot about the location with almost everyone one I’d spoken to stating that it is ‘the place to sail in Sweden!’… Big expectations!

They didn’t let me down, it’s incredible! The closest place I can compare it to is Portland Harbour in England, which is two miles wide and perfectly flat water. If anything this location is better as its blows everyday due to the land/water temperature differences creating a minimum of 10m/s, everyday, at around 1pm… Now that my kind of sailing!

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I went out at around 11am on my 7sqm sail, this was soon too big, so changed down to a 5.5 and the fun happened! Cross shore wind with a little chop on the sea leg and flat as you headed towards the shore. Really fun getting the board jumping and flying along the waves, best sailing day I’ve had since the UK!

The campsite costs 245:- per night, with electric and showers etc… It’s around 1min drive to the launch place for windsurfing.

There’s every type of windsurfer here, from the old ‘sit and go fast’ guys through to the dedicated speed sailors… Fuckin fantastic place to meet like minded, friendly people.

This evening we took the bikes to a restaurant called ‘storafrö hostel’, it’s run by a lovely couple who moved down from Stockholm 4 years ago, really great priced food and a much needed break from the ‘pasta’ menu in our housevan 🙂

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Let’s see what tomorrow brings… Hopefully Elins going to have a sail tomorrow, but let’s see what the ‘little baby inside’ thinks about that idea! AndyC