XI - Heading East once again!
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X - Eventually we begin sailing.
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XI - Altanya Körfezi
Log Entry Monday 19th August - We head north around to headland to Çineviz Limani. (194)
We put the Turkish tourist resort of Çavus Limani behind us to make a short journey north to Çineviz Limani, described as "A spectacular, deserted anchorage" a distance of no more than eight miles or so. We have a stiff onshore breeze to motor against, the engine has plenty of time to recharge our domestic batteries. As we reach the mouth of the Limani the wind dies off almost completely, not even enough of a breeze to hold out our canvas, we motor on. This is typical of this area, we have lost the prevailing winds only onshore breezes in the morning and offshore in the evening. The evening breezes can be quite uncomfortable as the wind feels like a warm oven as you open the door. As they develop we drop our wind scoops normally used to accelerate cooling ventilation down below decks, other wise anything in the hot wind's path literally heats up?
It is a straight forward issue of following the coastline and it's thick pine forests, far more colour on this coastline to us?
The coastline is a maze of small coves and anchorages, only a small number listed in the pilotage, information on this area seems quite sparse?
The mountain of "Musa Dagi" dominates this whole coastline, unfortunately nearly always hidden in the mist. We now get the odd glimpse of "Tahtali Dagi (Mt, Solymnus)" in the distance to the north of us.
We turn into the entrance of Çineviz Limani, it's centre guarded by a large clump of rocks rising from the seabed. It is clear to us it's description in out Pilotage is inaccurate, it is very busy, not deserted? We enter to find the declared anchorage and in fact the entire beach lined with trip boats, we stay clear, anchoring in the deep water to the centre of the bay.
Even as we settle, boats come and go, mainly day trip boats but the odd gullet ventures in, on the shore a couple of shack type buildings. The first seems to be a base for individuals, two or three small fishing boats appear to use it for shelter, protection from the sun?
The small bay is quite full and busy, then we realise that it is Sunday, "Family Day" so that must account for a lot of the activity. The trip boats are full of Turkish tourists as we have seen through out this area.
There seems to be an under lying activity on the shore line, it was drawn to my attention by Ann "there are more coloured people here than any where else I have seen anywhere in Turkey?" she retrieves the binoculars to investigate further. They are actually Turks covering themselves in black mud, drying off in the sun, then washing down in the seawater?
We decide to head over to the second shore side building to investigate, it is a cafe run by the proclaimed "Kaptan" of the Limani. Everything one need to provide a service is there, mostly hand made in true Turkish style. We order a couple of beers and watch the activities, the open fire and pans are used extensively, visitors can cook their own food, for a fee usually as we have seen occasionally.
There is a dedicated washing area for dirty utensils, a tank fed from a well and suitable table decorations made from melons, we are told the pigs would eat the decorations that evening?
There is a fresh water area with bottled water, outdoor food preparation area and a constantly boiling tea urn - this guy has everything? We chat to him but mainly to a gent there with his family, his English is excellant and appears to translate our conversation to the others. We laugh about various issues, purchase some bread and return to Sailaway.
In the morning the fishing begins at dawn, even the Kaptan is out early trailing lines!
Log Entry Saturday 17th August - We visit the Turkish holiday resort of Çavus Limani.
Here as at any other resort the boat trips start early, every thing is ready for the tourists as it should be. We like this anchorage but are some what surprised by the lack of use it gets, we have still only seen one Turkish flagged pleasure craft here which suits us perfectly.
We head ashore, leaving our dinghy on the beach behind the trip boat pontoon, the promenade stretches a good mile along the beach with a vast collection of shops, cafes, restaurants, pensions/hotels. Some quite elaborate establishments, some no more than "shacks, knocked together", in true Turkish style, "If they are making a living, then we must be able too!" - all the same. We found the best stocked shop, then all one had to be careful of was the "sell by dates", we picked up some cheese that was out in early June! It was obvious that this stock could not be turned over, there just was not the demand, people were only buying water and incidentals, we saw no one eating ice creams, but every one had a fridge selling them.
This was clearly a Turkish resort, no foreign registered vehicles, the prices published at the cafes etc also confirmed that - 3tl for a nescafe?
The bars, restaurants had all laid claim to a section of the beach, this company offering paragliding had done just the same, people walking on the sand were shouted at to "watch out" as they came down from the sky. A young chap in his early teens had the job of folding the chutes.
We picked a cafe to sit in the shade, it was an interesting place, friendly and relaxing we spent a couple of hours drinking 3tl nescafe's, watching the world go by. The shade was made denser by the grapes hanging over our heads, the "mum" sat in the corner making bread and pancakes.
The area is very relaxing and interesting, perfect for a beach holiday, none of the nonsense you experience in "western tourist resorts". We do feel as if our presence is questioned in a curious way, but of coarse our cash graciously accepted. After the cafe we returned to the shop to pick up some fruit juice, bread, cheese (in date) and some cold beer to enjoy this evening - we were probably his best customer of the week?
Log Entry Friday 16th August - We move on, around the headland into Altanya Körfezi.
Today we are moving on east, around "Besadalar (Five Islands)" and then north into Altanya Körfezi, a large bay in which Altanya sits. We are unsure as to how much further east we will travel as from there we will almost certainly loose the prevailing winds, which means lots of motoring? We had thought of motoring/sailing to Altanya, but the thought of a possible 15 hours or so on the engine in this heat was becoming less appealing?
We wait until we could see the prevailing winds developing ahead, and left around lunch time, the route was straight forward and should give us some good sailing at least for the first 10/12 miles to the islands? We left Finike Körfezi behind fairly quickly we had a good 16/18 knots of good wind, our headsail alone giving us 6/7 knots, once on coarse we had only to pass the time of day?
The land mass ahead of us was only barely visible at times through the mist it would be an hour or so at this speed before we rounded the headland taking the channel between the islands and "Taslik Burnu".
In time our turning point became visible through the mist, but unfortunately the wind also began to drop, more sail needed but the wind continued to drop further, it appeared that we were already coming to the limits of the daily prevailing winds?
By the time we reached Taslik Burnu the wind was nil, we dropped our canvas and started out engine, we tidied up as we motored around the headland, past the islands.
Once around the terrain became very rugged and a mix of colour, the island of "Suluda" ahead of us a mix of colours, unfortunately not truly visible on the pictures.
We now had about an eight mile haul north, up the peninsula, with almost no breeze the increased heat was noticeable, especially with the additional heat generated by the engine, we soon put the islands well behind us.
We now had quite an array of day trip boats around us, they seemed to be leaving Çavus Limani ahead of us, visiting Suluda to the east of us, then into a small cove on our west side, ashore?
One the island of Suluda there was a strange setup, the boats would allow people ashore, there appeared to be a cafe of some sort, and a series of small tents around, weather they were for staff or campers, who knows? This island looked so baron it was unlikely to have even a fresh water supply?
On we motored around "Kuçuk Çavus Burnu" and turned into Çavus Limani.
We were surprised at the size of the Limani, although indications showed it to be a beach area of about one mile in length. It had also developed significantly from the information in our pilotage, it was now a full resort, all the water play things were here, even a quay for the trip boats. It is a very pleasant setting however the evening, off shore winds did blow some what. We were surprised to be the only foreign pleasure craft at anchor in such a setting, although we were joined by an other just before dark.
Log Entry Thursday 15th August - A trip into Finike
We leave Sailaway out at anchor, to the east of the harbour/marina mole and take the dinghy into the harbour, after a short conversation with the gent at the fuel quay we secure the dinghy along side the south wall of the fuel pontoon and make our way into town.
The walk down the mole is very pleasant, there is certainly more activity on what could be described as the "commercial quay" as apposed to the marina, this was our second day here and had only seen three pleasure craft enter/leave the complex. A lot of the sailboats are almost completely covered, almost in a state of storage?
We follow the mole, and along side the river, passing the cooling water under our hull, into the waterfront park, men and women lining the waters edge fishing, sometimes whole families.
We like the park, it has several cafes, everything at local, Turkish prices, which makes it even more pleasant as you feel "part of it", not being charged the usual, "weighted tourist prices".
Once out of the park, Finike is just another large Turkish town, the main road through servicing the south coast very busy. The town appears tired compared to two years ago when we were last here? During our last visit they were erecting large fibreglass tomatoes to identify the towns importance to the locally grown tomatoes - today, the monuments have faded significantly, in fact Ann thought they were oranges?
We walked up the river to a small square Ann had remembered as a good source of both food and fresh fruit and vegetables. We bought the fruit we needed and then sat down to eat at one of the small cafes, two coarse's and a drink for 7tl, just over £2! Two teenage lads came to us and tried to hassle us into next door, telling us the food was "cheaper", the older guy who was servicing the establishment in which we sat just stood back? Somewhat confused, but guessing what was going on we picked up our gear and left, walking back towards the waterfront.
We ended up eating in a cafe adjacent to the marina, again with a special menu, a selection of mezine (starters), bread, a main coarse and drink for 12tl each - perfect and the food was good. After an hour or two we headed back to Sailaway, we had been joined in the anchorage by another sailboat.
Just off the park we had walked through there was some form of function, live music, a couple of small craft came out of the marina and dropped anchor along side us to enjoy the music, we sat up top and joined them, it conclude around midnight with fireworks.
Log Entry Tuesday 13th August - We move on to Finike.
We lift our anchor about lunch time, giving the prevailing winds time to develop, what ever did come would certainly be light should the forecast be accurate. We left Üçagiz Limani and made our way east down Kekova Roads, barely a breathe of wind with us at this stage. As we approached the eastern entrance we became a little more optimistic as we could make out, certainly some wind on the water ahead.
Ahead we could just make out Andraki in the mist and the trail of trip boats from there, making there way over towards the Roads. It is strange to watch some people on holiday, some of the boats where playing dance music and as one would expect some of the ladies dance. I think from some of the moves some of the ladies were making, they were clearly wearing headphones, listening to different music to what we could hear - saying that you should see me move!
As we passed the "Blue Cave" on "Ashil Adasi" and cleared the eastern point of "Kekova Adasi" we could feel the light south, south westerly prevailing winds, only light, 6-8 knots but usable.
We turned south into the wind and raised our main sail, put Sailaway back on coarse, switched off the engine and rolled out our genoa, the 6-8 knots of wind was giving us 6-7 knots of speed through the water. It was just a case of passing our time waiting for the headland ahead of us to arrive from which we would turn northeast and make the final five miles to Finike.
There was very little for us to do at this stage, we had pushed out away from the shore for cleaner winds, a sailboat ahead of us was much further inshore than us, we were catching him fast. Now, when boredom threatens to creep in there is nothing like a "race", even if other parties do not appreciate the race is actually on! I "fiddled" as Ann calls it, Ann chatted and read, my efforts were clearly bring him closer, fast - so I felt anyway?
We carried on past Andraki, a few larger gullets still in port along with the empty coaches awaiting the return of their passengers.
We made our way past Demre and numerous small beach areas complete with cafes.
We closed in on our target and passed him, with relatively little effort other than an outburst from Ann, "Happy now, now leave things alone!" In fare ness the vessel was a relatively heavy displacement ketch rig and had compromised his missen sail to provide cover from the sun, he could never be fully powered as rigged. I like to remind people that "it is not the winning that counts, it is the participating!" To summarise, he did not know he was participating and I did not mind winning! I did create some curiosity with the skipper as he came out after us, changing point of sail and position many times to try and regain the lead, he never could of coarse and followed us into Finike Körfezi, them choosing the marina, we anchored.
After a relatively good nights sleep we woke early and was on deck by 0700 to take in the view, the above pictures are of the western section of the Körfezi.
At the head of the bay is a large national flagged coloured onto the hillside, lit remarkably well during the night.
The eastern section is mountainous, a significant mist covering from the humidity already in place.
The local waterside activity is already underway, people in the water already. Ann and I went in, Ann took some coaxing, as running from the stern of Sailaway you could see a relatively fast currant from the river ahead of us. As a result the top 10cm or so of the water was icy cold straight from the mountains and predominantly fresh water - refreshing I thought, bl____y freezing Ann thought?
The marina/port at Finike has a much higher proportion of smaller commercial fishing vessels, many could be heard leaving and returning around dusk and dawn. There must be some sort of fish in season as numerous small boats were out late last night and again early this morning?
Log Entry Saturday 10th August - Off east again!
Today we at last leave the marina, Ann has had the all clear and the new power management system is fitted to take care of our solar panels and wind charger. This year, especially considering how short our season is due to our late arrival has seen numerous, unfortunately, expensive failures - still "keeps ones mind occupied!" The failures are mainly due to equipment fitted many years ago, the power management system was over fifteen years old, so we have had our worth - we replaced it with today's unit from the same supplier?
We waited until the winds began, pushing off about 1300 hours, the winds were light in comparison to the forecast, in fact for the whole day we saw no more than the occasional 8knts, predominantly around 5/6 knots, 16 knots plus was forecast?
At least the winds were usable, up went the canvas and off went the engines, at this pace, 3-4 knots there was little to do but sit back and relax, Ann is plentiful of her usual cheek! We make our way around the peninsular, past Kas town and along the coast line towards the maze of islands along the coastline.
The section "The five islands" as the trip boat owners call them are just as quiet as the last time we passed, some three weeks since, only three trip boats out? There was however a lot more vessels making the east to west passage, about ten vessels must have passed us, even a fleet of 5/6 Sunsail Charter boats, the first flotilla we have seen this year - still comparatively quiet?
As we make our way through the islands the wind drops off further, as does our speed? The last trip we made through here we went out to sea behind the islands to seek cleaner wind, we did so again and again found it. We headed out to sea for an hour or so than "tacked" in heading straight for the entrance to Kekova Roads. We had hoped to overnight to Finike but this wind was failing and would probably disappear completely as apposed to continue through the night as per forecast?
As we closed in on the land as it began appearing out of the mist I had been aware of a large catamaran coming directly down the coastline, we had been on a collision coarse for some time, although our speeds were slow? As we grew nearer, he was clearly going to overtake us and we could now hear his engine, even though he had all sails up, flapping about he was actually motor sailing. Under those two conditions, we had right of way, by now he was about four boat lengths away? I had notice from the markings that it was a charter vessel, I asked him "in forbidden Turkish hand gestures" what his intension's were as he should alter coarse - Ann asked "would you like sugar in your coffee". It was clear that he had no intension to avoid a collision as he walked over to the side of the vessel away from the steering position, the vessel was clearly on auto-pilot. I adjusted our coarse, allowing him to pass in front of us less than two boat lengths off, the slow speeds ensuring safe avoidance without too much of an issue? The boats coarse was taking him on so we thought toward Finike, we were wrong, as we approached the shore he turned to shore and made straight for the same entrance we were. We were amazed, but unsure if it was "arrogance or ignorance", charter boats have a bad reputation, but from what we see, most study the rules and air towards caution - this one was, well we were unsure what he was? Fortunately, once inside he chose a different anchorage to us - heaven knows what he would have been capable of in an anchorage?
It was quite late as we entered the Roads, we had eaten during our clash with our friend, we almost had the waters to our selves, Kale Köy Castle looming in the mist.
The anchorage was relatively quiet, only four other vessels, there was three guys at play in a small sailboat and a fisherman laying and collecting his nets. We relaxed as we sat beneath the rear of the castle in Üçagiz Limani and watched the sun go down.
Log Entry 3rd August - We drive high above Kas.
We started this trip high above Kas as an excuse to charge up the car batteries, for a few weeks now we had only carried out short runs, mainly just into town, always with air conditioning on - that was our excuse anyway! It was worth recording in our opinion due to the fantastic views of the nearby islands and Kas itself. Not sure how we found the roads, the satnav kept telling us we were on "unpaved roads" probably an accurate description at times? The vegetation high up was green, forest-like with a few stone constructions found occasionally, they looked like man made wells in two of three small fields on the roadside. We were told later they were actually reservoirs used to store the rain water?
The view from high up (around 2000ft) was quite spectacular, even when hidden by the mist, a result of heat and high humidity. The centre picture shows the primary island of Kastellórizon, the Greek Island off shore.
A popular tourist venue up where we are is tandem paragliding, they jump from the top above us (with a parachute) take in the views, their landing strip is the harbour wall far below, must be a fascinating descend? I must say when I look at some of the acrobatic displays of the more experienced, I hope, perhaps I feel a little glad that my knees would not take it?