7.5M into 11M then add current

We left Molat and headed North. The Italians were already under way, racing against each other with their spinakers up in very light winds. We soon passed them, courtesy of our iron sail and headed off to the bottom of Cres, 36nm away. We picked out a group of bays for a bit of wilderness experience. We settled on Majiska and picked up one of about 6 moorings in 2m of water. The 777 cruising guide suggested sighting of royal elk in the evenings in the dense vegetation. Dee and I ventured out on the paddle boards at 7pm to search them out but no such luck for us. 

About 8.30pm, a fishing boat came round the corner and collected 156 kuna for the mooring (about 30AUD).

Next morning we headed off for Cres Town, by going up the channel between Losinj and Cres islands. This involved going through a 11m channel. Yes 11m!!! And with up to a 5knot current at times. We checked our sanity, but decided anyway it was too much of an adventure to pass up. After all, our 7.5m wide La Mischief had a metre and a half on either side – what could possibly go wrong?

We weren’t entirely sure if the swing bridge would open for us before 5pm. The guide said it would open on demand, the internet said it only opened at 9am and 5pm. We got to the bridge just before noon and of course it didn’t open to 5pm. No going to Cres Town that day.

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5 hours to kill involved some people watching over a litre of white in the pleasant little historical town of Osor, followed by some unsuccessful boat jobs. Stevo gave us a lesson in soldering the anchor winch handhold, which was suffering from corrosion and we tried to suss out why our wind speed was reading zero. No such luck sorting out either.

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Then it was time to go. We joined a line of boats and managed to get through without drama despite the little turn in the middle of the 200m long channel.

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Adventure over, we found the wind on the other side was blowing exactly in the opposite direction so we quickly looked in the cruising guide and on the internet for an alternative anchorage for the night. We found one in a little bay off a camping ground. It was a bit rolly but otherwise okay.

Next morning it was off to Cres Town. We got there at 10.30am and anchored off some shingle beaches between the town and the ACI Marina in 7m of water. Another free anchorage.

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As the anchor went down it started to rain so we waited a while until there was a break. We then dingied into town in and out of the cute small boat harbour, which was chockers with boats and lined with restaurants.

Just as we tied up the dingy it started to rain again so we headed for cover. We were on a mission to taste the famous lamb from Cres. We found a nice (dry) restaurant with roast Cres lamb on the specials board so that was it. We pigged out on two serves of roast lamb and one lamb chops.

I had some stuff to do so I left Dee and Stevo to explore. They checked out the old town and then went to the marina in search of a Yacht Club. With no such club to be found they were back on the boat and swimming to the shore, as the afternoon turned out to be nice and sunny.

Then it was time for a beer and a snooze!

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3 Boats Full of Venetians

Luckily it was only a short 17nm hop from Zadar to Molat as when we woke up the sky was black with rain clouds. So we waited in Zadar until they had passed and set off in pristine conditions – pristine if you are a motor boat as there was absolutely no wind.

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13332806_10205862436872996_3518623038098138016_nWe got to Molat at 3pm and anchored in Luka Jazi. We’d picked out Molat because it looked off the tourist track and the bay on the chart looked inviting. It turned out to be a gem of a pick.

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We anchored in 3m of water and had a quick swim to check the anchor and our surroundings. Then we headed in for a walk around the island. We ended up walking across to the other side where we found a cute little marina and some restaurants and bars. Obviously we stopped for a drink before heading back to the boat.

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The water was like glass and out came the wine and the camera in no particular order. Some more yachts came into the bay – we have about 10 here now – obviously not as much a secret as I first thought.

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Three boats came in at once and we asked across the water where they were from. “Venice” was the answer and after dinner we headed off in the dingy to introduce ourselves and pick their brains about Venice. Good move. We also enjoyed their Italian food, wine and company and had a really nice time. Even got a free T Shirt for their cruising club. The emblem has the compass points pointing to different Italian wines. My sort of cruising club.

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Great night in a great bay 🙂

230 Photos Later

13312830_10205848923775177_2922788766211216683_nWe motor sailed up from the fresh water river of Skadin back out to the Adriatic and pointed our nose North. Passed lots of yachts racing as we dodged numerous islands, large and small. We arived at Zadar at 4pm, passing the famous sea organ and headed to Zadar Marina, which at 130 euros a night (ouch) was the cheapest of any of the marinas in the immediate area. Marinas are It in Zadar – not much in the way of anchoring.

13312599_10205848929935331_1387001444668736071_nWe tied up and walked into the old town where we checked out the old walls and gates, the Roman forum and some impressive old churches.

Next day, we hired a car and drove a couple of hours into the mountains to visit Croatia’s Number 1 tourist attraction.

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The sheer beauty of Plitvice National Park lies in its sixteen lakes, inter-connected by a series of waterfalls, and set in deep woodland. Its supposedly populated by deer, bears, wolves, boars and rare bird species, although we somehow missed seeing any of these. The National Park covers a total area of 300 square kilometres, whilst the lakes join together over a distance of eight kilometres.

13315642_10205856744210683_5414550576617365483_nWe parked and hopped on a bus/train that takes you to the top of a chain of 16 terraced lakes, joined by waterfalls, that extend into a limestone canyon. We followed the walkways that wind around and across the water, before taking the Lake Kozjak ferry that links the upper and lower lakes. After a quick lunch, we continued to explore the lower lakes until we got to Veliki Slap, a 78m-high waterfall. Luckily we left the best to last.

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What a day. Took 230 photos but will only bore you with this selection. One of the most stunning natural places we’ve visited on our adventure!

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