Back onto page 39 - inland again in Friesland

Friday 7th July
From Terschelling back to Harlingen and on via Franaker to Leeuwarden.

Our Dutch Wadden experience has been a treat - it's a beautiful place, we have had such luck with perfect weather, and in fact not as busy or as "touristy" as we feared. Proof, if it were needed, that sometimes it's better to have low expectations.

We are conscious of wanting to make progress north and east and we don't want to call at every island so we decide to return inland for now to the standing mast route. See blog post for 25th July in Haarlem, posted 27th July, entitled "Navigation...etc". I was clearly keeping up with the blog better back then.

We make a very early start from Terschelling (5am) and are rewarded by spotting spoonbills for the first time and by a stunning sky as the sun comes up. Optimistically we put the bowsprit out and hoisted the main but there's next to no wind and in the 3 hour motor to Harlingen none materialises.

Early morning sky in the Wadden

At Harlingen we lock into the Van Haringxmakanaal and motor inland. By 10am we are tied up on the quay in Franeker. On another recommendation from our friend Aleid we visit the Planetarium here. Built in the 18th century by a self-educated man in his living room, it is the oldest working planetarium in the world. Read about it on Wikipedia if you wish but a couple of photos will give you the feel of it:

It's stunning - and it works. All the wooden circles move independently by clockwork with the workings above the ceiling

It was the living room, but as was the way in those days also the bedroom

The mechanism above can be viewed...

...all handmade by a man whose business was in wool-carding

After lunch on board in Franeker we set off again and at about 2pm we cross back onto the pages of our Stand Mast Route book - page 39 to be precise.

Here's the back cover of our book again - of the 2 dotted routes across the old Zuiderzee we took the westerly one but left it when we went on north to Hindeloopen and out to the islands. Now we rejoin it from the west on page 39

Our route takes us on to Leeuwarden which is the "capital" of the province of Friesland.

The approach to Leeuwarden where we will pass through the bridges in company with these other sailing boats

Now that's different! Not seen one skewed like this before

And looking back at the underside

In Leeuwarden this is the view from our cockpit - Angeline is one of the big barges that takes tourists and their bikes around the waterways - they get to choose when to cycle and when to cheat and travel with the boat

We climb the wonky church tower here and this is our view of Bonify - our wooden mast visible through the trees, just to the left of the stern of the white boat


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