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Day 9 & 10 – Katapola, Amorgos, cross winds & crossed anchors

We’re now moored up in Katapola the capital of Amorgos and expect to be here for a couple of days because of the forecast for strong winds until Tuesday afternoon when we hope to be able to move on. This does give us an opportunity for a good look around Katapola at least, although we were planning on hiring a car to explore more of the island. However as I write this I’m sitting in a cafe watching the boat and here’s why…. It was clear yesterday when we arrived that the conditions would make things challenging because of the cross wind. That always makes mooring up stern too with an anchor difficult because you are forced to reverse at a higher speed than you would like to stop the bow from being blown sidewards. This then makes getting your anchor down in the right place (in line with the spot on the quay you’ve chose and the right distance out). I’m not ashamed to say that it took me 3 attempts to get it right. Anyhow all good, well over 40 meters of chain out and the anchor very tight.

Having had a lovely evening an dinner in a very nice taverna overlooking the bay followed by a good night’s sleep I was just getting up to make coffee at 7:30 when there was a rap on the hull of the boat. It was my neighbour telling me the stern of the boat was knocking the quay which could mean only one thing, the anchor was dragging. No worries I thought, I’ll just pull some in and re-set it. 10 seconds later it’s dragging again, pulled some more in, same result. No choice I knew we’d have to go out and relay the anchor, even more challenging because of the increased cross wind.

Then the fun really began. It turned out that the small gin palace that turned up after us had crossed anchors with us. As Ellison pulled up the anchor it also pulled up his chain- this is what it looked like (the picture is not Baby, no chance to take a real picture!).

The solution is to get a line under the neighbour’s chain, secure it at both ends on a cleat, drop our anchor separating the two. The only problems with this is that the tangle is not much above the water (that’s as high as you can lift it) and I couldn’t leave the helm because of the wind blowing us onto other boats. Ellison fantastically achieved success, after some time, which was way above the call of duty and very difficult to do for anyone. It would been much easier to achieve from a tender which the gin palace could have launched, but did not. The conditions made things extremely difficult and to cap things off the line was so tight on the cleat Ellison had to fetch the Gerber (has a very sharp serrated blade) to cut the line free. So so proud of Ellison who’s never been faced with doing anything like this before.

So we re-anchored, second attempt because of the strong cross wind, and all good. The only casualty was a boat hook accidentally dropped in the sea, already replaced for 14 Euro’s from a brilliant hardware and chandlers next to the harbour.

So with the wind continuing and a mostly cloudy day we’re staying put in Katapola. No hardship, now completely relaxed, but still boat watching.

More about Amorgos when we leave.


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