Gladlee of Guernsey
September 1995 - October 1995
1st – 8th September
After final preparations over the weekend we decided to head straight for Kekova on Sunday night – we refuelled and anchored in the outer harbour for supper, prompting a sortie by Ismael the boatman to find out whether we needed help! We motored in a very light NE until Cavus Burnu, whereupon the wind shifted to NNW and picked up to F3/4. The moon had set by the time we started sailing, and it was very dark, so we decided to play safe and keep outside Suluada and the islands off Taslik Burnu. Shortly before sunrise at 06.30 the wind died, but by that time we were well past the cape and heading for the end of Kekova Island, which we reached 3½ hours later. Soon afterwards we anchored behind the castle ruins at the east end of Üçagiz Liman, close to the American yacht “Cusar”. A while later “Cusar”’s tender appeared from the shore, and we could hear the occupants talking as they spotted our SSCA burgee, at which point Nigel hailed them by name and invited them on board for a drink. A decidedly puzzled Rick and Sheila Nelson were trying to work out where we’d met before, when we explained that we only knew them from their authorship of the new “Black Sea Pilot” (we’d also heard Rick on the East Med “ham” net). They turned out to be very good company, and we spent some time exchanging impressions of our respective Black Sea cruises.
The next couple of days were busy with hull and prop cleaning, deck painting and some unforeseen repair jobs. We discovered that the bushings on the second alternator bracket were badly worn and did what we could to fix the problem, discovering a leak from the sea water pump in the process. Dismantling the pump proved extremely difficult (bearings partly seized to the shaft), but reassembling it was even worse, and by lunchtime on Wednesday Nigel was almost at his wits’ end. A sandwich and a beer wrought miraculous results, however, and with a little help from the hammer everything eventually fell into place: by teatime we had the engine running again, with some very satisfactory output from the new alternator. Meanwhile we spotted “Sturmvogel” anchored a few hundred metres away: Nigel paddled over to leave a message for Norbert, who deserted his guests next morning to come over for a brief chat. We took the dinghy over to Üçagiz later, phoned John Hawkins at Medway Bridge Marina to order new bushings for the alternator bracket, stayed for beer and meze at Ibrahim’s and then had quite a rough ride back as the wind picked up. We reached “Gladlee” to find that our sun awning had split down the middle, so Julie’s project of making a new one from the Israeli material was promoted to top of the agenda! The wind continued well into the evening, with gusts of 25-28 knots at times. Next morning was calm, though, and we motored round to Polemos Bükü, passing Jim on “Graylin” arriving from Cyprus: we had a quick word on VHF, little suspecting that Jim would die of a heart attack only a few days later. A couple of yachts (including “Gina”) left as we arrived and anchored in our usual spot, Nigel going ashore for coffee with Ramazan while Julie did some more painting and put the finishing touches to the new awning. We went ashore for the customary stroll across to Aperlai (dogs in evidence this time) before enjoying a fish supper at Ramazan’s, presenting him and his wife with a couple more flags and receiving an embroidered headscarf for Julie in exchange.
9th – 15th September
We left the next morning as the sun rose and the moon set, and in virtually flat calm conditions we motored all the way round to Kalkan, where Julie dropped Nigel off in the harbour to do some shopping while she stooged about outside – out portable VHF came in handy for arranging the collection of Nigel in the dinghy (to the surprise of Louis, also out in his dinghy clearing “Nevada”’s fouled anchor). We had three goes at anchoring in Yesilköy Liman, across the bay, our efforts not helped by the windlass starting to slip again. We did finally get the anchor to hold, but later in the afternoon a windshift pulled it out just as Julie snorkelled over to check it out! We re-anchored across the bay, making contact in the process with “Skiathos”, last seen the previous year off Skala Loutra on Lesvos. Julie was woken early in the morning by squeaks of a dolphin swimming near the boat, and we left at sunrise, removing the second alternator soon afterwards because it seemed to be vibrating too much on the bracket. Rounding Ilbis Burnu into the Gulf of Fethiye soon after midday we picked up F4 from WSW and had a good sail for 45 minutes before the wind dropped, leaving us with the usual fitful gusts around the islands. We motored up to Göçek and anchored with a score of other yachts west of the town quays: at first sight the anchorage seemed quite open and rather too busy with dinghy traffic for comfort, but it was nice to see a few familiar boats moored nearby.
That evening we made the unwelcome discovery that the galley foot-pump was leaking into the bilge, and a first attempt to repair it failed. Next morning Julie had another go (failed again), while Nigel stripped and reassembled the windlass (successfully). June and Glen from “Twelfth of Never” stopped by briefly, as did Hermann of “Seggel Tov” (a familiar voice from the ham net) who introduced himself as an SSCA Commodore. We paddled ashore later for a first look at Göçek – quite nicely developed, as tourist villages go – and to see if we could find some pump spares. No luck with the two small chandlers in town, but helpful Hasan at the Setur office contacted someone in Fethiye who hoped to be able to find the parts in Izmir. This turned out to be a “falsie” next morning, so on our next visit ashore we phoned Chris Ramler and asked him to bring them out at the weekend. Meanwhile we were discovering what Göçek had to offer – friendly and helpful grocer (from whom we bought a basil plant to replace the remains of our Greek ones), expensive butcher, gas man who was prepared to exchange Camping Gas bottles on the spot (a first in Turkey for us), and various other useful little stores (fishing gear, fins) as well as the inevitable boutiques and restaurants. When our water ran out we went round to the fuel point on the town quay, crowded with yet more yachts, where we were able to refill the water tank, wash the deck down and get a couple of cases of beer delivered while waiting for fuel.
On a calm and hazy morning we motored out along the shore to the SE, looking into Innice liman (not very inviting) before doubling back round Göçek Adasi and heading into the creek Heikell refers to as Laundry Bay. This is a lovely spot, supposedly quite deep until you reach the sandbank at the end, but we managed to anchor in a little more than 7 metres with a line ashore to the seaward side. Nobody else was there when we arrived: a small gület came and went, a very large but discreet motor-yacht anchored at the entrance, and a German boat turned up later. Otherwise it was very peaceful, and there were enough nice birds (notably kingfishers) about to keep Julie close to the binoculars. We stayed there until early the next afternoon, failing to find much evidence of the hot springs advertised by Heikell, then motored for an hour before getting a gentle southerly breeze and a very pleasant reach as far as the entrance to Fethiye Bay. We’d just heard Hermann’s most enthusiastic recommendation of Yes Marina on the ham net, so we headed over there and found plenty of room on the small jetty, a lazy line waiting, very friendly people and clean facilities at a reasonable price. On the way in we passed “Gib Sea Roma” (apparently not gone to the Black Sea) and “Rainbow”, Ken and Jo’s friends who’d given us coffee in Larnaca. An oil and fuel filter change before dinner saw us near the end of our list of maintenance and repair jobs, and we walked the short distance into town the following day to do some stocking up and ring Chris again. We ran into an Aussie couple in thearket who were anchored off the Lykia Hotel, and found them again later at the Belediye-run café on the waterfront (large beers at TL 30,000!).
16th – 26th September
We got up very early (hence the photograph!) to welcome Chris and Deborah, who were due to arrive at Dalaman at 03.30, though in the event they didn’t reach us until 07.30. They’d brought a heap of stuff for us; almost all the spares we needed as well as mail and good things to eat and drink. They had a brief kip before we went into town, heading first for “Sanayi” to try and get something done about the second alternator bushings (J. Hawkins hadn’t been able to identify exactly what it was that we needed). A good example of Turkish ingenuity followed, as within half an hour (and a cost of £3.50) we had two new bushings machined out of plastic. Back in town we shopped in the market, then caused much amusement by ordering a vegetarian Iskender kebab for Deborah’s lunch. Later in the afternoon, in lovely conditions, we managed to sail most of the way across the gulf, hoping to anchor back in “Laundry Bay”, but there were several boats already in there and we settled for nearby Boynuz Bükü (the actual Laundry Bay, according to “Rozinante of Clifford”, whom we found anchored there).
We spent the next day relaxing, later taking some of our guests’ Pimms across to “Rozinante”, while they provided the accompanying nibbles. In the morning we moved up to Göçek, where we collected gas (managing to avoid buying a set of brass dominoes from the supplier!) and got a letter faxed through from Setur Antalya. We called on Helmuth and Helga, anchored nearby on “Shiba”, with a grandson on board and affectionate as ever. In a gusty WSW/WNW wind we sailed most of the way down Skopea Liman before heading through the narrow channel between Tersane and Domuz Islands and out into the gulf. Now with a brisk headwind we motored along the shore of Kizil Kuyruk Bükü, a narrow inlet with a beach at the end, where we’d anchored on our first arrival in Turkey almost two years before. This time anchoring proved more of a problem, and it took us seven attempts and the best part of an hour to get ourselves well set. There was just time for Nigel, Chris and Deborah to walk up to the ruins of Lydae, now well signposted from the beach – we’d searched for them in completely the wrong direction on our previous visit – nothing very spectacular, but a pleasant walk with good views. Later a German boat came in after dark and had similar problems setting their anchor in the crosswind and what was by now a fairly crowded creek (in the circumstances they sorted themselves out very competently indeed). In spite of persistent flies and some swell we had a relatively peaceful night.
There was enough wind about in the morning (not to mention a forecast of NW F5/6) to put us off trying to head northwards. Chris and Julie walked up to Lydae before we weighed anchor and made room for “Sedina”, who’d been trying unsuccessfully to find good holding further down the creek. We went back into Skopea Liman, looked into Kapi Creek (no good mooring out of the swell) and went back on round the corner into the attractive wooded surroundings of “22 Fathom Cove”. Here it seemed to be a straightforward case of dropping the anchor in 7-8 metres and backing in to a low stone quay near a restaurant at the head of the cove. Two attempts with the CQR didn’t work, so we had a go with the Fisherman’s (our first use of it) which dug in nicely. Chris and Deborah wandered off in the dinghy while we clambered up the hillside to a point overlooking Wall and Ruin Bays, also good views across Skopea Liman towards Göçek. We had made enquiries about dinner ashore, but early in the evening the restaurant proprietor turned up to inform us, with profuse apologies, that he didn’t have any food! (A party turned up from a gület and probably exhausted the limited stock – no problem for us, but disconcerting for our incredulous Austrian neighbours, who evidently hadn’t much to eat on board). Conditions were calmer when we got ourselves up at 06.30 and left Skopea Liman again, spotting dolphins briefly on the way out. By 09.30 we had passed Kurtoglu Burnu and picked up a good F4 form the north – an excellent reach for a bit over an hour, but the wind died again as we came up to Disbilmez Burnu, and we had to settle for the engine again as we made our way round to the island off the entrance to the Dalyan River. No sooner had we dropped anchor than we were approached by a boat offering to take us up the river to Kaunos – but at an absurd price (TL 3m or around £42). Nigel thereupon decided to take Chris and Deborah up the river in the dinghy, but after negotiating the first couple of bends they were informed in no uncertain terms that independent motor traffic on the river was “yasak”. Back at the boat Julie volunteered to ferry C & D ashore again to try and find some reasonable way of getting up the river – they found a cheap ferry service, but it had just left, so they settled for beers on the beach instead! We eventually ended up anchoring off the beach in the bay of Ekincik, four miles further on, where we had dinner in a smartish place serving wild boar. It was a decent enough meal, but Nigel felt obliged to create a mild fuss over a service charge added on to what was supposed to be a fixed price menu (first time we’d ever encountered a service charge in Turkey, and a rather depressing sign of the times).
Next stop was Marmaris, after another windless passage (though at the end we managed to sail across Marmaris Bay on the genoa). We spotted “Seggel Tov” on the way in and had a few words on VHF, berthing in Netsel Marina at 13.00. After lunch we spotted “Bidarka” on the next pontoon, had a brief chat with Geoff, then went to check out chandlers while Chris and Deborah headed off on their own. “Nikki” was at her berth, but her Turkish captain informed us that the Beards were in the USA (Erika’s father had recently died there). Once back we dismantled our u/s engine-room fire extinguisher (having failed to find a replacement), then went round for a drink with Geoff and Phoebe before C & D came back. We had a good basic supper in the bazaar area, Chris looking a bit preoccupied after spending a fair bit on a very large rug! An attempt at a lie-in next morning was frustrated by calls from (a) Gordon of “Nayiri” (b) Herman and Annette of “Segel Tov” and (c) Geoff and Phoebe, but after shaking off our visitors we set off on a long walk across town to a rather awful weekly market (no very exciting food, and the usual tat otherwise – most of the customers seemed to be tourists from the north of England!). We went on up the main coast road, via a bar for refreshments, to Migros, where we bought beer and wine (which C & D generously insisted on paying for). A taxi back to the marina wiped out any savings on the booze, Nigel dropping off to buy a bicycle pump, chicken (none, inexplicably, in Migros), and some plastic gas piping to wrap round our shrouds. We left Marmaris with no regrets – a tacky and expensive place – and with a steady headwind all the way we motored out of the bay and round Kadirga Burnu. It was quite choppy heading WNW along the rugged coast of Gerbekse Cove, where we tried to anchor, but eventually settled for a laid mooring near a yacht wearing a White Ensign (i.e. Royal Yacht Squadron). The occupants seemed pleasant enough and were the only fellow-diners at the bar/restaurant on shore when Nigel, Chris and Deborah (Julie was feeling a bit rough) went there for supper. The food was reasonable enough the prices were absurdly high – in mitigation of this the owner was at least playing some nice classical music tapes.
We left Gerbekse for Fethiye soon after 08.00, having decided not to push on further west. It was calm and hot, with a slight haze, and a brief breath of NNE wind proved short-lived (we sailed for 13 minutes!). We stopped for a swim at midday, the sea a deep blue with hardly a ripple on it. Thereafter conditions got a little more interesting, with high cloud moving in from the direction of Rhodes, and low cloud building over the mountains onshore. There had to be some wind somewhere, and it steadily picked up from SW, then WSW. We started sailing at 12.30, and shortly before 14.00 we exchanged the genoa for the ‘chute, which took us along at 5 knots for an hour and a half until we had to gybe the main round Kurtoğlu Burnu. We were now sailing across Fethiye Korfezi virtually down wind in F4, and with the fluky windshifts inside the gulf we had to gybe twice more before eventually running out of wind five miles short of the entrance to Fethiye Bay. Not a bad sail by local standards, and by 18.30 we were back at Yes Marina – exchanged greetings with “Sweet Mover” via VHF on the way in. We got up early next morning to walk southwards across the hills to Olüdeniz. Climbing up behind the marina we soon reached pine woods and followed a track cutting across the bends of the road, with glimpses of Fethiye Bay behind us. Eventually we came over the top to a wide valley, on the other side of which we could see the ruins of the Greek village of Kaya – a further hour or so’s walk brought us into the village, where we avoided an admission fee (rather impertinent in the circumstances?) by claiming (truthfully) to be only passing through on the way to Olüdeniz. A stiff climb through the ruined village brought us to a crest overlooking the sea to the south, and the next stretch along a steep hillside gave us superb views over to the anchorage at Karacaören. By this time Deborah’s knee was playing up quite badly, but she gamely hobbled the rest of the way down through more woods to the shore of Olüdeniz – the far side from the beach and tourist area, and the prettiest approach to this famous lagoon. We were grateful to sit down for beers at a café along the road before going on to the beach just outside the lagoon. Here Nigel sat and watched para-gliders descending from the mountain behind (he maintained that the few topless ladies on the beach were less interesting!) while the others went for a swim. We caught the bus back to Fethiye, shopped at the market and paused for beers on the waterfront before finally getting our boots of back at the boat.
We got going again before 09.00, finding the windvane stuck in a cobweb before we caught a gentle westerly breeze, which carried us most of the way across the gulf to “Not-Laundry Bay”. There was a gület parked in our favoured spot on the south side, but we found an adequate if slightly more open mooring on the opposite shore. The same large motor yacht as before (“Philante”) arrived to anchor at the entrance to the creek but later left. We all enjoyed a quiet afternoon and a pirzola and chicken barbecue in the early evening. The next morning was also a pottering one, with Chris and Deborah rowing round the creek in the dinghy (and discovering a curious sea-cucumber-like thing nearby) while we wrote letters for them to take home. An Aussie family on a Sunsail charter boat came in and had predictable problems trying to anchor in deeper water – we offered them our place in a couple of hours, but they eventually left. Noisy Germans on a gület persuaded us not to hang around, and in mid-afternoon we weighed anchor and headed for Göçek. Chris and Deborah went ashore to look round shops, and later we picked up a couple of handsome porcelain dishes Deborah had bought before dining off meze at “Pelin”.
27th – 30th September
We’d enquired about taxis at the rank in town the previous evening, and within minutes of our mooring at the town quay a driver was on hand and had taken charge of our visitors’ bags. Deborah took us totally by surprise by presenting us with a pair of little porcelain dishes we’d admired as she was picking up her purchases – she’d gone back to the shop without us noticing. We waved them off to catch their flight at Dalaman, refuelled and took on water, did some shopping and returned to the anchorage, where it promptly started raining! An inspection of the second alternator revealed two out of three bolts on the mounting bracket sheared off…… Meanwhile Julie dismantled and cleaned the holding tank pump (back to the basics of liveaboard life!). Next morning Nigel went into Fethiye to buy a bigger cable and new bolts for the alternator, and he was in the middle of fitting them (as Julie tackled the loo pump), when David Holden, CA/HLR for the Medway, rowed over for a chat. We asked him on board for tea and discovered, usefully, that he was a service agent for autopilots (and a nice fellow into the bargain). We finally got the alternator reconnected and the loo pump back in place before it got dark. We had a slow start next morning, and the wind got up on an overcast and showery morning, kicking up a bit of a chop and putting us off going ashore. The skipper of a large yacht (“Bellinia?) turned up to pick our brains about the Aerogen, which his owner was thinking of fitting, and stayed for coffee. Conditions deteriorated further during the afternoon, with thundershowers and gusts up to 28 knots into the bay, but things calmed down again by early evening. We chatted to a few neighbours on VHF (including “Nayiri”, anchored up the bay) and listened in to graphic accounts of a freighter’s attempts to demolish part of Bay Marina while manoeuvring to leave the wharf opposite. Next morning was fine, as we went ashore to do some shopping, then went up to chat with “Nayiri” before heading down the channel to an almost deserted Boynuz Bükü. It was another quiet afternoon: several boats (including Georg and Gisela on “Excellente”) turned up later, and Nigel went off for a wander ashore to take photos.
1st – 7th October
With strong winds forecast by Athens we based ourselves at Boynuz Bükü for the first three days of the month. As gusts built up in strength the anchorage steadily filled up, until eventually we counted 20 yachts, 8 gülets and 5 motor cruisers sheltering in the creek. Gisela came over for a chat from “Excellente”, as did David and Anne for “Spirit of May”. Nigel went ashore at dusk to get water, took a short cut, and got a severe shock when he disturbed a branch on which half a dozen chickens were perched! The forecast on the third morning was for F6-7, though it was actually clear and calm: Helmuth of “Shiba” came over with his grandson to report that they’d had to pull out of Kapi Creek the previous evening in a F8 and a bad swell. We motored up to Göçek, met Gordon and Marnie in the square and shared a döner lunch, then rang James and collected his faxed letter from Hasan at the Setur office. Back to Boynuz Bükü, preceded by Hella on “Najade”, and in the late afternoon we dinghied over to “Shiba” for beers and a chat.
Next morning we got up early for the Athens forecast, which was for F4-5, so we decided to leave and motored out to Kurtoğlu Burnu in clear and calm conditions. We picked up a little wind on the way up to Disbilmez Burnu, then hit calm again, but enjoyed another sail in a light southerly on the way across Kadirga Burnu, the headland guarding the southern approach to Marmaris. Visibility was exceptionally good (30 miles or more), as was Julie’s first attempt at pressure cooker bread, which we sampled on the way in to Çiftlik Bay, which looked quite inviting behind the rocky island at the entrance. The proprietor of one of the restaurants on shore turned up to take our line to a mooring buoy – a very pleasant welcome, but on closer inspection the facilities on shore looked a bit run down, and we found ourselves lying uncomfortably to a SW swell. Picking up the line from another buoy didn’t do much to solve the problem, so we cast off and motored the mile or so across to Gerbekse. Here we managed to grab the last spare buoy with the last of the light: this left us too close to one or two other boats in a freshening northerly breeze, so we rowed a line ashore as well. We left early in a flat calm and reached Bozuk Bükü shortly before 11.00, making our way through the dramatically steep entrance overlooked by the ruins of a citadel. A Blue Ensign boat was moored in the cove below the citadel, and we found good enough holding in 6 metres nearby.
The surroundings were stark but quite spectacular, with the citadel walls dominating the view, and crystal clear water off the rocky shore. Various charter boats and gülets came and went during the day: we walked up to the citadel early the following morning and returned to find a gület full of middle-aged Brits more or less alongside. Otherwise it was quite quiet, and we busied ourselves with cleaning the hull. Gale warnings were out again for the South Aegean areas, but there was no sign of any serious wind here. Nigel finally tried out his idea of treating the mainsail slides with furniture polish – and the new sail went up for the first time without jamming! We left the anchorage early, sailing out of the entrance on the genoa but soon losing the wind: the sails were up again an hour later, but soon afterwards we were heading north for Bozburun in a hazy flat calm, with the Greek island of Simi just off to port. We tied up alongside the entrance to Bozburun harbour just before midday, having fortunately arrived on the one day of the week (Saturday) when the place wasn’t full of charter boats. Nigel went ashore to shop while Julie tidied up, and then we found a pleasant anchorage in a bay to the south, occupied only by an Austrian motor-cruiser. We had a brief and rare spat over exactly where to drop the anchor, but all was well eventually, and Julie spotted a little owl, robins and sparrowhawks on shore.