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21st July 2012

An Offshore Sailing Holiday On A Schooner – Three Different Points of view

The Schooner Trinovante sailing past a scree slope, Stad Headland, Norway.

There are three contributors to this blog all sharing their view of an offshore voyage on Trinovante.
Other blogs written on the same voyage by different crew are
The Saga Of Earl Johns Voyage To Norway
Which Jaffa Cake On Your Schooner Sailing Holiday?

Or why not join us for a schooner sailing holiday onobard Trinovante?


Theresa steering a schooner.

Theresa steering a schooner.

Theresa, ambulance technician/paramedic and first time sailor sailor who threw caution to the winds and started at the deep end with a two week offshore voyage to Norway.


A warm welcome, good food, a company of people likened to old friends meeting. Vastness of the sea, a landscape, friendly Norwegians.


The question was asked why did you choose this holiday and what did you expect?

My answer, having bought up my son I find myself at an impasse, what to do with myself, to sail was a childhood dream now to be realised. I had chosen SchoonerSail because of it’s small crew and fully expected to be kept busy, an activity holiday, Su laughed at this and I was to discover there were flurries of activity, I am sure intense on rocky waters, superseded by lots of relaxing cups of tea.

I was always on the look out for wildlife and saw a dolphin and her young along the coast and a sea eagle being harried by seagulls.

Fishing a new experience of catching, killing and gutting. A taste sensation of cod, saithe, wrasse and in particularly fresh mackerel, which I never wish to experience out of a tin again.

Above all it was a time of peaceful contemplation, a place to just be.

Having gained a little knowledge of sailing and having had a good experience thanks to the crew of the Trinovante I am now thinking of more sailing.

SchoonerSail says – if you have not sailed before check out our learn to sail web page.

Su at the helm.

Su at the helm.

Su, mate onboard Trinovante.


The 2012 Ipswich, UK to Alesund, Norway voyage was fairly straight forward this year. 4 days and four hours from locking out of Ipswich to tying up alongside in Haugesund, no bad weather, little rain and winds mostly NW 2 to 5 . In these conditions Trinovante will selfsteer with the wheel lock on (even in a bit of a chop) better than most helms people. For the best part of two days the crew lay around on deck in the sunshine, chilled out, drank tea and swapped stories.


Towards the end of the passage the wind dropped off, then we heard a gale warning for our sea area, South Utsira, on the radio. By now we were sailing along the coast of Norway a couple of hours from Haugesund. The better part of valour was to go into port, have a dram and the luxury of a full nights sleep. For some of the crew it was perfectly timed to watch the footie in a local bar.


The following morning the gale left us with brisk southerly winds for several days – perfect for our big fissaker sail. Now Trinovante ran north at 7 and 9 knots effortlessly covering 60 miles a day through the fjords and islands of Norway.

You could wait a lifetime for sailing like this.


Jess arranging the anchor chain in the forepeak.

Jess arranging the anchor chain in the forepeak.

Jess, midwife and regular SchoonerSail sailor with several thousand miles sailed on Trinovante.


After 751 miles, one sea passage, 2 hill walks, 17 mackerel, 2 cod and a clump of sea weed caught, one jaffa cake tasting competition, 2 wet bottoms, one tequila party, and a vat of Norwegian beer we finally arrive in Alesund for the farewell party. (This will NOT involve walking up the nearest mountain at 3 am like the last farewell party I attended).


We have had a wonderful time, with near perfect sailing conditions and lots of opportunities to perfect hoisting the sails. No longer do we hear Su’s (the mate) dulcet tones shouting “Not that rope” followed by “No not that one either”. We have also has the opportunity to witness the fastest bowline tied in the history of sailing thanks to Scottish Paul whilst coming alongside a quay. The only thing I have been concerned about is John’s (the skipper) vision of childbirth. Whilst stowing the anchor chain in the forepeak with the chain hook, he commented “That must be like delivering a baby” I have advised him against a career in midwifery.

After 9 voyages onboard I have finally mastered the art of hoisting the sails.

The fact that Su is silent during this tense operation backs this up. It’s taken long enough…



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