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Barry's Blog #179 - The plans of sailors…

Updated: May 22, 2021

What is the most important part of a yacht?

It's a tricky question to answer because it depends on what you're actually doing with the yacht at any given moment in time.

If you're moving from A to B using the power of the wind, then fully functional sails, a rudder and standing and running rigging are handy to have.

Travelling great distances are certainly made easier and safer by having electronics for auto pilot, navigation and collision avoidance.

At anchor, good ground tackle takes precedence over all of the above and allows us to sleep soundly at night even in the fiercest of conditions. In this week's video our Mantus anchor once again proves that we made the right choice of anchor. But I'm getting ahead of myself again.

Bye bye Akcali

The night we spent anchored at Murdala Koyu (Akcali bay) was so calm and flat that we couldn't feel any boat movement at all when laying in bed. This makes for a great night's sleep and the following morning we were up early for our planned trip to the next anchorage at Kuçukbuk just 34nm to the north.

Bringing the chain and anchor up in the crystal clear water made the task a breeze as we could see where the chain lay and we could see when we were positioned exactly over our well dug in anchor so that we could motor over it and free it from the sandy bottom.

In this week's video you get a bit more insight as to what Aannsha does at the pointy end of the boat when she's bringing up the anchor and I explain the overdrive feature of our Gori folding prop and how it's taken me 3 years to finally get my head around changing from normal drive to overdrive and vice versa.

About an hour after we departed Murdala Koyu we got a message from Jim who was anchored further north in a bay to the east of Didim. During that conversation we talked about our next planned anchorage, the coming strong southerly winds and the holding at his anchorage compared to the one we had planned.

Weighing up all of the known variables we decided that the best option would be to skip Kuçukbuk and instead head straight for where Jim was at Akbuk. It would only add an extra 14nm to the trip, and in hindsight it was the right choice.

We use the * Turkish Waters and Cyprus Pilot guide as one of our references when we're choosing an anchorage.


An hour later another text message came in, this time from our mate Mike. He and a few other boats had departed Kaş marina and were now in the province of Muğla and planning on anchoring out for the 30 days of Ramadan, one of the holiest Islamic months. Mike explained the reasoning behind his decision.

Because of covid, the Turkish government had issued further lock down rules to restrict movement of people across province borders during Ramadan and that included us Turkish residents travelling on our boats.

These new restrictions threw a bit of a spanner into the works to our overall plan to get as far up the Turkish coast as possible during summer 2021, maybe even reaching Istanbul. After our conversation with Mike my favourite saying once again came into play.

"The plans of sailors are written in the sand at low tide."

I'm going to get that printed on a t-shirt and we'll see if we can include it for sale as part of our Sailing A B Sea merchandise.

Akbuk Koyu

We arrived at Akbuk Koyu at 15:00 hours, 7 hours and 15 minutes after we'd departed Murdala Koyu, and Jim came out in his dinghy to welcome us.

Picking our anchoring spot in 5 metres (16 feet) of water we dropped our Mantus into the muddy bottom and let out 30 metres (98 feet) of chain. We'd re-anchor and let out all of our chain on the morning of the big wind's predicted arrival.

During the anchoring manoeuvre we had a small plastic part on our Mantus chain hook fail. From the moment we'd bought the hook at a chandlery in Athens, Greece I'd always known that one day the plastic piece would fail. Fortunately the hook still does its job as would be proven over the next 48 hours.

Once we were confident that A B Sea was secure, we had a meeting with Jim to talk about the coming big winds, the latest travel restrictions and what our new plan would be.

I'll tell you all about the big wind and the new plan in next week's blog. Until then stay healthy and safe wherever you are.

To watch the video that accompanies this blog click here.

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