Swedish coast at midsummer and twilight kayaking! 2022 trip part5
We are now at day 66! and I have broken a couple of personal records on this trip!
Longest trip without a tent and longest time sleeping outside.
We start the day with a cup of coffee, pack down, cover up and start kayaking a little after 10.00
See full route her MapShare (garmin.com)
We made a stop at öregrund harbor for some shopping and since the new solar cell dont really work that well I always start by finding a place to charge.
I stopped by the harbor office and she was happy to help, i was also offered a shower so i happily said yes,
We continued in the beautiful weather when I felt ready and we didn't stop until the sunset after 55k.
Lots of people out on this 30 degree warm beautiful midsummer night!
Day 67 I wake up and get the news of a shooting in Oslo during pride week.
I hope we all one day can accept each other for how we are and stop the violence.
A simple banana nutella breakfast and we are on our way.
It was a little windy today, between 5-10m/s from the SE and the wind makes short and tall waves.
As soon as we get out in the open we stop moving forward, just up and down so i make a small change in today's route and instead of crossing NW the shortest way I decided to follow land until we get a better direction for my crossing.
We aim at Lövgrund and continue from there to Eskön klubben where I found a camp spot for the night after 47km today.
Root vegetables with portobello mushrooms and Swedish honey in the sunset mmmmmmm.
Day 68 starts with another magical surice, I might have gotten 1-2 hours of sleep since the mosquitoes were swarming my camp for the first time on the trip.
I am a little tired but decided to start the day early, it starts with a soft wind in our back that changes from the west before it gets really calm and it feels like it's just quiet before a storm and I am too tired so I find a nice camp and get some more sleep!
After some hours of sleep I cleaned the area for trash, it's not as much trash along the Swedish coast but at this spot there was a lot of isopor that had started smouldering up to 1000s of small plastic pieces.
The next lap starts a little before sunset so we continue into the magical twilight!
This three are taken at 2210-2220
And the next three are from 0313-0328
I love it when you get to the point where there is no nighttime, just day and twilight! already at 3am the sun starts rising over the horizon.
I was considering stopping after a marathon but I was not happy with the camp area at Prastgrunnet so we started the 20km crossing to Kräkö.
When we got there i found out that it was a no camping zone but i found a toilet and a water pump so I did my business and filled up water and started the next little crossing.
We found the beautiful beach at Hölick where i set up my camp on the bach, take a swim to cool down and fall asleep as soon as i lie down! A good 70km today :-)
I sleep for some hours until I wake up super warm with a family with screaming children that have set up their day camp just a couple of meters next to me on a beach 100s of meters long! WHY??? If you have screaming kids with you please use your head and sit down a little away from the man sleeping in his camp when it is a really big area to spread out.
This happens time after time and I have a feeling that they are thinking well if i'm not allowed to sleep no is mentality, and that is not cool!
I find my headphones and turn them on max and get a little more sleep before I run out of battery and wake up again.
It is time for me to find a new place to camp after I cool down in the sea and eat some food.
When I start, the sea is a little wild but it calms down as the sun goes down and we continue into the twilight ;-)
We kayak into day 70 and it is beautiful! I'm a little tired and the wind is increasing so when I see a nice campsite at Jättholmarna after a marathon is done and I decide to take a break.
I take a couple of hours in my hammock and eat some oats before i start.
Then its time for another marathon before we make it to today's goal outside of Sundsvall right before midnight.
Here I am welcomed by Mats and his father Robert, Mats is another old frien from my time in Spain and they have invited me home for food, shower, cloth wash and bead for the night. Mmmmm Swedish meatballs!!!
I accepted the three first but I didn't want to break my 70 nights outside streak so I slept outside in my hammock until breakfast was ready.
The first weight i have found during my trip and i have lost 4kg since i started now at 68.8kg
I made sure to use the time to fix and wash everything possible and after another homemade meale I said thank you for your hospitality and got some food and fishing equipment from Mats own shop Storfiskare.se
By the time we get started it is a thick fog with a maximum of 50m visibility and my fist crossing is the bussy seaway into Sundsvall, I turn on Marine traffic on course so I can see the big ships and sing as high as I can to warn the smaller boats.
There are some rescue boats at high speed in the area, looks like they are having a training day in the fog and at one point they cross 2km in front of me moving at 34 knop and almost at the same time i hear a smaller boat coming up right behind me, singh as loud as i can and he sees me with just 40-50m left and made a turn to avoid me. This is some of the most dangerous situations you can get into and if you make the choice to paddle in thick fog you should stay really close to land and I was jumping from island to island to save a little time.
I like to make myself kayak a marathon before I go into land so I didn't stop until right after 42km for the day at Svartvik.
Day 72 and the sun is back again and we start before 9am and we made a stop in town for some food and I had breakfast on a smal beach with a baby seagull.
Clear skyes and a burning sun so it's important to cover up on days like this, you have the sun hitting directly and reflecting from the calm sea that acts like a mirror reflecting the sun.
After 50km it is time to set up camp and if we do nine more laps like this we will be in Finland! The mosquitos and horse-flies are starting to wake up and they are attacking in big numbers! I am starting to get motivated to reach the goal now!
Holy shit, I have to stop sleeping on the ground now, they are swarming me, I start as soon as the sun hits me!
We made our way to beautiful Ulvön where I made a stop to fill up with water and it was breakfast time at the hotel so I took the time to relax with a little food, coffee and a nice talk with the receptionist Linea that also loves to paddle.
Ulvön looks like an interesting place to explore but I have to keep moving. More and more dark thunder clouds are forming around me so I try to stay close to land and I can feel the pressure building, i want to make my goal of 50km but 49km. I see a good place to set up camp and it feels like the sky will explode soon!
Seconds after i set my foot on land the first lightning strikes close by, I start with the tarp and continue with the rest of my camp, make some food and give my mom a call before i fall asleep with the rain hitting my tarp and onkle Thor hammering as it gets darker and darker.
We are at day 74 and during the night it has probably rained more than the entire trip so far! I am up at 4.20am enjoying leftover food and coffee while I pack down my camp and we are ready at 6.
Today looks like a challenging day, we have fog, wind from all directions, swells, waves and lightning strikes so this will be interesting!
The fog i starting to clear a little when i start and i have the swells in my back and for the first 20km i am surfing at a good speed but half way on my crossing to Långron some really dark high pressure clouds come over me and they have their own when system that cures everything up and i am barely making progress.
I have to change my direction to gain speed and after a while the clouds pass me and I am a little "lucky" that there were no lighings right now!
I change my direction again and it doesn't take long until a new dark cloud is heading towards me and it gets a little chaotic again!
Luckily this one passes faster but now I can feel a pressure building from within me, i have to get my ass into lans FAST!
I make it in and I am struggling to hold it in while I grab my nr.2 bag and tear off my drysuit and get down on something that must have looked like a crazy yoga position just in time for the explosion and I am so thankful that there were no people to witness my moment.
While I am doing my business I get attacked by lots of horse-flies and while I try to wipe clean and chase away the flies onkel Thor starts banging his hammer again and he strikes right where I was 2 hours earlier just to say hello.
Most people would probably seek shelter in the gapahuk and call it a day but I am determined to make my goal for the day so I continued paddling.
When I got out from where I had found shelter it got wilder!
More wind and waves and i fight with the swells on my side for a while and i am close to give up but i know that if i just make it passed Jäenäs i will make a turn and get the waves in my back, the waves are crashing over me in the shallow area and i make my turn and get some really nice waves to surf.
They are starting to break as I get close to where I am planning to go between land and an island and right before I am in safety I get a huge wave that breaks neck high so for some seconds my head is the only part that is over water.
I made it into land and found Kråkens Hamnkrog, I am super hungry so I ordered a fish and chips and it is one of the best fish and chips I have had!
The wind is strong but I have it in my back so I decide to try and make it to Holmsund but due to dark clouds and lots of lightning in my route I decided to stop and set up camp, happy with finishing 54km in the most risky laps of the trip! Tired, happy and full, I fell asleep in my hammock.
I have done more than 12000km in Ymir now and we haven't capsized once!
The wind is not slowing down so we can either rest or accept the challenge.
10(13)m/s winds that almost take me the direction I want, nice surf swells at around 1meter for parts of the trip.
Unfortunately they are not taking me the way I want so I change between going with them and having them on the side until I am lined up with Holmsund but I am struggling to find a way in!
Shallow rocks/reefs that waves are breaking into all around me but i use the nautical markers to guide me in and i am finally out of the crazy breaking waves and behind some islands.
We find a smal boat harbor where I can assess the risk of continuing to eat.
Honny, melon and polar bread are today's lunch with some nuts, after i am done eating I throw the organic trash into some bushes and sit down.
I sit down and I get approached by a local woman who starts telling me to pick up my trash and put it in the trash bin, she was not happy.
I give her a little intro and tell her that i pick trash every day and that everything organic i give back to mother nature so no i will not pick it up!
I could tell that she didn't like that I told her no but I quickly turned the conversation around and asked for advice for the area I was hoping to kayak before I ended my day. She was happy to give some advice but it was mostly about how dangerous it was to kayak there now with lots of reads and waves from every direction.
This is a thing I hear from locals everywhere I go so i dont always take it as seriously as I should so I decided to give it a go!
This time she was right, for a long time I regretted my choice but to go back was not a possibility! waes were now around 1-2m high but as long as I stayed far out they didn't break and after kayaking a while East and NE we finally had a northern direction and the waves in my back.
We made it into a sheltered area between islands but it got really shallow so it was a little tricky to move forward, and for some areas I had to get out of my kayak and walk it instead. We found a camp for the night at a small boat harbor where I set up my hammock for the night after 61km!
Day 76-84 at the goal, the extra days kayaking back to Luleå and the Drive back with Raymond will come out one day but I am not sure when since I am close to start my next adventure along the Norwegian coast!
As always a big thanks to my team! Norse for the magical kayak Ymir, LevelSix with the amazing drysuit Odin, Silva for Navigation and keeping equipment dry with drybags, Aquabound sendt me their paddle Whiskey that now is my Nr1 paddle!
And last out Aktiv.no that have equipment from all mentioned above! Thank you all!!
More info about my trips check out my Instagram, FaceBook and YouTube as ShibbyTraveler.
See full route her MapShare (garmin.com)
Lots of Love
Joachim the ShibbyTraveler