crazy4sailing – What About You?

crazy4sailing is not something I have made up (although I clearly am crazy for it). It is a wonderful combination of a couple of words. It is a state of mind. It is the problem of many spouses. And it is a pretty cool brand.

beautiful sunset at anchorage in Sejerø

Quite a while ago I have published a post on “Why do you like sailing“? This article has created lots of responses, be it in the comments, emails sent directly to me as well as feedback on Google+ and Facebook. The range of thoughts was vast, mainly going in the direction of
– freedom
– peace of mind
– being focused (nothing else matters).

Are you a sailor?

Then you might recognise one of the following situations: Continue reading “crazy4sailing – What About You?”

walk1000miles For Charity

Lots of other participants use their walk1000miles challenge to collect and donate for a specific charity. All the funds coming in for my miles walked in 2017 I will donate to the children’s cancer ward at the UKE in Hamburg.

walk1000miles for kinder-uke.de (c Kinder UKE)
walk1000miles for kinder-uke.de (c Kinder UKE)

In 2017 I aim to walk (or run) a total of at least 1000 miles. Some background information on this walk1000miles challenge and my reasons for doing it I have talked about in a previous post. This post here is my info-page on donations and how you can participate and help.

Walk for charity – of course!

Having signed up to this challenge beginning of January, the first couple of days were fun simply being outside. Get fresh air, exercise, clock up miles.

But then – doubts started creeping in… Was I to do it just for myself? Simply to stay fit? I don’t need it to get over a major crisis or problem, don’t need it to feel good. So, what has inspired me in the first place to sign up? It was David and his post on Potty Adventures about the walk1000miles for charity. Continue reading “walk1000miles For Charity”

walk1000miles – My 2017 Challenge

#walk1000miles - 2017 poster
#walk1000miles – 2017 poster

On 03. January I signed up for the 2017-edition of the walk1000miles challenge. A post on the great family hiking site Potty Adventures was so inspiring I simply had to. What is the walk1000miles all about? And will you join as well?

What is the aim of the walk1000miles challenge? Go outside. Walk. Enjoy fresh air. Get closer to nature again. Talk to people instead of messaging.

All you need to do is walk (and record the details of your walk). Be it during lunch-breaks, with the dog, to the pub, to work, for a one-day or a longer hike. As long as you are active outside and are walking, it all counts towards your total mileage covered. Continue reading “walk1000miles – My 2017 Challenge”

Kids Research Microplastics In Mussels

Is it true that microplastics in mussels will harm humans? To answer this and a few other question, a small team of very young researchers entered a nationwide contest. Their topic won them a five day research trip on ALDEBARAN, a professional research sailing yacht.

checking out microplastics in mussels (c meereswettbewerb.de)
checking out microplastics in mussels (c meereswettbewerb.de)

In summer 2017, my eldest daughter will move from primary school to grammar school. She very well knows which grammar school she wants to attend (and, luckily, we agree). I was quite surprised to find out that some kids from her school-to-be took part in a contest organised by “Deutsche Meeresstiftung” (German Sea Foundation). Their topic: Do research on the concentration of microplastics in the North Sea. In addition, do microplastics in mussels change their ability to filter sea water? And how much microplastics can actually be found in mussels? Continue reading “Kids Research Microplastics In Mussels”

Lina Needs To Wait A Little Longer

The (first) wait is over. Today was the day lots of sailors had so eagerly expected. The first version of the Mini Transat 2017 starters’ line-up has been published.

Lina Rixgens has kicked off her Mini Transat CampaignLina Rixgens has successfully passed all qualification requirements for the Mini Transat 2017. She has enrolled on the very first day the list opened, and since then it has been a waiting game. And the wait needs to continue, unfortunately.

Today the organisers of the Mini Transat 2017 published the first version of the official starting line-up. Lina is on position 5 of the waiting list – not ideal and, of course, it would have been better to be a confirmed starter today already. But at least she is on the list at all. Continue reading “Lina Needs To Wait A Little Longer”

Two Short Hikes Near Bad Staffelstein

What do you do when your family does not want to go for longer hikes? Yes, plan and organise short hikes. In late autumn, we went for two colourful short hikes near Bad Staffelstein.

colourful autumn near Bad StaffelsteinThe last week of this year’s autumn school holidays offered a great opportunity: our kids wanted to stay alone at my parents’ place. This may sound “normal” to lots of folks, for us it isn’t – my parents live something like 550km away.

Less than an hour’s drive from my parents is Bad Staffelstein, a cute little town in Franconia. The “Bad” in the city name means quite the opposite from the English “bad”, it stands for “spa town”. So, hotel booked, kids taken care of, and off we went.

Continue reading “Two Short Hikes Near Bad Staffelstein”

Seehamster Started It All For OEOO

It does not always have to be the cleaning of plastic in oceans that gets attention from the public. Seehamster (Sea Hamster) has made some swimmers in Southern Bavaria really happy (and Bavaria is a long way from the sea).

Seehamster on a lake (c One Earth One Ocean)
Seehamster on a lake (c One Earth One Ocean)

One Earth – One Ocean (OEOO), an association aiming to free the oceans from plastic waste, has built some very interesting clean-up boats. I have already posted some lines on their catamaran Seekuh, starting its clean-up mission in Hong Kong beginning of 2017.

The one having started it all for OEOO, however, is a tiny boat called Seehamster. Its looks might be, well, “harmless”, but it is efficient in getting quite a lot of unnecessary stuff out of the water. Continue reading “Seehamster Started It All For OEOO”

All You Need To Know About Celestial Navigation

When thinking about celestial navigation, the very first thing coming to my mind is a sextant. There is, however, a whole lot more to it than just that. Viki Moore has put together an awesome series of articles on everything related to celestial navigation.

sextant with explanations and details (c sextantbook.com)
sextant with explanations and details (c sextantbook.com)

Viki wants to sail around the world. If there is one sailor qualified to do so, then it is her. She has more nautical miles in her sailing books than most sailors I know. Right now, she is studying for her RYA Ocean Yachtmaster exam – and for her, one way to learn all the stuff required is to write it down neatly. Plus, share it with lots of other folks worldwide.

This she has done also for celestial navigation. Continue reading “All You Need To Know About Celestial Navigation”

Can Football Save The Oceans?

Save the oceans? Football? You will very likely think that I have gone completely bonkers. But… Bayern Munich and Real Madrid have joined the mission to clean up the oceans.

Xabi Alonso, Bayern Munich, for the oceans (c adidas)
Xabi Alonso, Bayern Munich, for the oceans (c adidas)

It was two days ago when I heard that FC Bayern Munich will play this week’s Bundesliga match against TSG Hoffenheim in shirts made of ocean plastic. As I was absolutely surprised by this I wanted more background information and powered up my laptop. What did I find? Not only Bayern Munich was going to wear those adidas x Parley shirts, but also Real Madrid in one of their upcoming matches.

Little (ok, nothing!) did I know of all that. So, what’s the background and aim of that one-off ocean plastics kit hype? What has made those clubs support the quest to save the oceans? Continue reading “Can Football Save The Oceans?”

1 Day, 13 Breweries – A Rush, Not A Hike

It is my own fault so I won’t complain. 13 breweries in one day sounds like a lot, same as the 33 km hiking distance. Add starting late, getting lost and darkness coming early, and you will get a rush instead of a hike.

13 breweries trail - colourful autumnMaybe the two days prior to my 13 breweries trail experience had been too relaxing. A magnificent breakfast I finished way too late, and hence my hiking start was an hour behind schedule. Bad news right at the beginning. Why bad news? I knew the end of the trail would lead me through some woods, darkness I expected to creep in by 18:00h latest. And I certainly had no intention of having a candlelight rendezvous with a hungry family of wild boars, numerous as they are in Franconia.

Continue reading “1 Day, 13 Breweries – A Rush, Not A Hike”

Seekuh Ready For Cleanup Mission

Ok, it’s ugly. Compared to beautiful sailing boats the catamaran ‘Seekuh’ (Sea Cow) is a no go. It has, however, been built not for beauty but to get pollution in oceans out of the way. And that is what it will be doing soon, starting in Hong Kong harbour.

Seekuh in harbour (c One Earth - One Ocean)
Seekuh in harbour (c One Earth – One Ocean)

Back in March 2016 I have published some lines about the prototype being built (with a very colourful picture to go with it). Now construction of Seekuh has been completed.

It looks a bit strange indeed, or let’s say unusual. However, as soon as it is in action on the water I am sure it will find many friends.

The ship’s christening has taken place end of September 2016, and Seekuh is now ready to tackle its first challenge: Hong Kong harbour. The current plan is to get Seekuh to Hong Kong and into operating mode by January 2017. Continue reading “Seekuh Ready For Cleanup Mission”

Lina Qualified For Mini Transat 2017

Lina and Sverre after Mare Nostrum race (c Andres Mata)
Lina and Sverre after Mare Nostrum race (c Andres Mata)

What a year this has been – and now she’s done it. Lina Rixgens just completed all required qualifications to be able to enrol for the Mini Transat 2017.

The start of this year’s sailing season was all but ideal for Lina. First race not finished, severe weather meaning most of the race fleet missed the time limit. A flu had Lina down for the second race, start not possible at all. After that, however, she really got going.

Continue reading “Lina Qualified For Mini Transat 2017”

Outwell Montana 6P, My Outdoor Castle

I could live in there permanently. Sell the house, move in, enjoy fresh air all year round (ok, including a backup for very cold winter nights). Our Outwell Montana 6P is a fantastic tent for a long term holiday, or something even longer than that.

Outwell Montana 6P and some camping equipmentFive years ago some friends showed off their newly purchased tent. It was huge, looked like a UFO and had the entire family in a camping craze. We were still unsure whether we should go for a camper or a tent, so we checked the website of that UFO-tent producer. Outwell, a Danish company.

After hours of comparing their various family tents we finally went for the Montana 6P. A choice we have not regretted at all, and talk about a camper has since then not happened in our family.

Outwell Montana 6P – that’s what it’s like

The Montana 6P sleeps six (in theory), we have used it for max. four so far. It is a huge tent for the four of us, and that was our intention when buying it: to have some space and a playground for the kids just in case it is pouring down outside.

Continue reading “Outwell Montana 6P, My Outdoor Castle”

Your Chance: Sailing On A Pogo 2

Have you ever dreamt of a pretty cool ride on an even cooler sailing boat? This is your chance: get onto a Classe Mini sailing yacht (Pogo 2) and race on the Atlantic. Lina Rixgens will take you out for a day you won’t forget.

approaching La Rochelle (c Lina Rixgens)
approaching La Rochelle (c Lina Rixgens)

No matter whether you are a novice or an experienced sailor, this is a great chance for something unusual. Spend a day on Classe Mini “732 mini doc” and see what it is like to sail on the Atlantic in a (more than safe) nutshell like this.

Starting point of your tour will be mini doc’s current home base, La Rochelle. Depending on tide, general weather forecast and wind Lina will plan (with you) the day’s approximate route. After some additional thorough preparation for the boat and yourself you will head off – and more than very likely have a grand time. Continue reading “Your Chance: Sailing On A Pogo 2”

Weekend Break On Als, Denmark

beach near SkovmoseNo surprise here: I love the Northern European landscape. It is not as lush, colourful, maybe impressive as the Alps or the Mediterranean. Still, the entire North in all its scarcity is great for being outside, and the island of Als (Denmark) is no exception.

Quite a while ago I have briefly described one of my beloved quiet spots, some friends’ summer cottage in Denmark. It is located in Skovmose, a beautifully quiet location on Als. A couple of weeks ago the four of us went there for a long weekend. This brief break was so fantastic that only two days later I took the chance to go back with the girls and spend another couple of days in peace and quiet. Well, whatever you might want to call “peace and quiet” with two young girls.

Hiking on Als

hiking place/hut for staying overnightThe entire island of Als offers lots of possibilities for one-day or longer walking trips. The cool stuff about hiking in Denmark is that you find those very basic huts (or whatever they might be called) along more or less every officially marked hiking trail. No need to put up a tent, simply throw your sleeping bag in there and have a rest. Another great thing both for hiking and sailing: barbecues can also be found almost everywhere, they can be used for free and are a perfect place for getting to talk to other folks. Continue reading “Weekend Break On Als, Denmark”