Drama as our anchor gets stuck and other stories

A stroll round the streets of Kaleköy (literally, Castle village) in the stunning enclosed bay of Kekova Roads, in Turkey, was a must before the dinghy trip back to our catamaran Sunday.

Strolling along the beach front in Kaleköy
There were of course, lots of steps in the village

We had just eaten our first meal out in a restaurant since December (and that was the first since the previous August) due to Covid restrictions. It felt ridiculously good!

We had a lovely wander round the village which clings to the hillside below the fortress

Feeling rather full we decided not to go all the way to the castle (more of a fort than a full-on castle) but we had a lovely wander round the village which clings to the hillside below.

Wasn’t sure if these berries were edible or not

Back on board Sunday we had an unexpected “flying” visit from David and Jaynee aboard Adventurous who were on their way to join their travel buddies on Imagine 2 – already anchored over the other side of Üçağız.

We had an unexpected “flying” visit from David and Jaynee aboard Adventurous

The next morning dawned still and warm and we had our first outside breakfast of the season which was really wonderful.

We woke up to this peaceful scene
Our first breakfast outside this season

At around 9 am we decided to haul the anchor and start our three hour trip to Finike marina.

Time to haul anchor

At first the anchor seemed to be coming up fine but soon it became apparent that we were very stuck. Had we become tangled up on a rock? Or had we snagged something on the ocean bed?

The village of Üçağız and the gulets perfectly reflected in the still water

After a bit of manoeuvring to see if we could disengage whatever we were caught on we decided that we needed to find out our exactly what we were up against.

Slowly, slowly we pulled up the chain in tiny increments to avoid stressing our anchor winch. Soon the anchor was near the surface and we could see what had happened. It was caught on what appeared to be a massive disused mooring chain. It was incredibly heavy!

On no! Our anchor was snagged!

How were we going to get it off? Drastic action was needed or we would be stuck in Kekova Roads for ever!

Drastic action was required to get this incredibly heavy chain off our anchor

We needed to tip the anchor somehow to get the massive chain to slide off. Captain Birdseye cleverly managed to thread a rope through the “loop” of the anchor using the boat hook. What next though? We obviously couldn’t use the anchor winch to tip the anchor on its side. We then hit upon the idea of tying the rope off on the cleat on the starboard bow so the anchor was held in position and as soon as we loosened it off it tipped and the huge chain slid back off into the water and we were free!

We needed to tip the anchor somehow to get the massive chain to slide off.
Captain Birdseye cleverly managed to thread a rope through the “loop” of the anchor using the boat hook
As soon as we loosened it he anchor off it tipped and the huge chain slid back off into the water and we were free!

Soon we were gliding along towards Finike where we were planning to stay for at least a month while we apply for a one year residency visa, look into the possibility of getting a Covid vaccination, make dental appointments, get a few boat jobs done and do some land travel.

As with the Kas-Kekova Roads leg there was no wind so we just switched on the engines and enjoyed the passing scenery – rock formations, the remains of earthquake-ruined ancient buildings and the village of Kaleköy with the fortress rising magnificently high above.

Soon we were gliding along towards Finike
The remains of earthquake-ruined ancient buildings
The village of Kaleköy with the fortress rising magnificently high above

Nestled snugly in a small bay we saw the superyacht M/V Never Say Never which apparently you can hire for a mere 6,000 euros a day!

M/V Never Say Never which apparently you can hire for a mere 6,000 euros a day

The three-hour trip passed quickly and soon we were radioing Finike Marina to let them know of our approach.

The three-hour trip passed quickly
Finike in the distance
Soon we were radioing Finike Marina to let them know of our approach

Our call was answered immediately and in no time at all we were being guided into the marina by two staff members in a dinghy.

We were guided into the marina by two staff members in a dinghy.
Heading for our berth on “B dock”

Everything went very smoothly and we were soon tied up and ready to check in. As we have signed a year’s contract with Setur Marinas in Finike we are able to stay in Finike at any time within that timeframe without any extra payment.

Ready to tie us up

Although we prefer to be anchored out it is great to know that we can also stay up to one month in any of the nine other Setur marinas for a total of four weeks each. An excellent thing if we need to leave the boat to visit family (Covid permitting), go land travelling or family and friends visit us. No more luggage transfers by dinghy!

Sunday nicely settled

After a warm welcome from Marina manager Barbaros and his staff at reception we wandered round to get our bearings and on the way acquainted ourselves with the marina dogs Emma ( just one year old and an affectionate and playful little dog) and the sweet, deaf but perky, 15 year -old Paspas (Turkish for Mop).

Meet Emma
She is the friendliest little dog
Paspas (Turkish for Mop) is deaf but very perky

That day and the day after, several people stopped at our boat to say “hello”. However, it was very difficult to see who they were as of course their faces were covered by a mask and often a hat too. It was a case of “guess the guest”.

No guessing needed with Paspas
A welcome cup of çay

Amazing what a small world it is – especially in yachting circles – one of our “callers” was Liz Colman from S/V Liberte who we last saw several years ago in the remote Andaman Islands. Others we had met more recently last year in Turkey. It is always such a delight to reconnect with people no matter how long you have known them or when you last met!

Liberte (third from left) who we had last seen in the Andamans

Donna from Intrepid Kiwi, who we met along with Ross last year very briefly in Gocek, kindly offered to take us on a bit of a tour round town, along with another recent arrival to Finike, Heather, from S/V Amorgos Blue.

Donna took us to three department stores (supermarkets that also sell everything from pots and pans to furniture), to hardware street (browsing heaven for Jonathan) and many other shops (my favourites were reminiscent of shops from my childhood that were “old fashioned” even then) and other various points of interest.

We really liked the old fashioned shops
Underwear anyone?
Everything neatly stacked in this shop which was reminiscent of my childhood
The mosque near “hardware street”

When we had our first and very quick visit to Finike last August we had found a fabulous baker’s shop where delicious bread of all kinds is made in a wood fired oven. So we were able to show Donna and Heather this wonderful place and of course we all purchased supplies to take back to our boats.

You can just see the glow of the wood fired oven – the smell was amazing!
Heather from S/V Amorgos Blue buying bread supplies
Fresh out of the oven and still warm

The bakers is at one end of short covered laneway and the rest of the space is taken up with a fishmongers and a cafe/restaurant. Having walked our feet off we decided to take the weight off and have a hot drink. Two of us had delicious cappuccinos and the other two had çay – one “normal” and the other herbal, also declared “very good”.

The roof of the covered laneway
The fishmongers opposite the cafe/restaurant
Jonathan keeping his hands warm
Coffee time!

When we arrived in the marina we saw that the bowl at the bottom of the machine installed by a pet food company on the dock was empty. We all put one Turkish Lire (about 15 cents Australian or 10 Euro Cents) in the slot and for each coin a handful of dried animal food was delivered to the bowl. Such a great idea to feed the many local homeless cats and dogs!

The machine installed by a pet food company on the dock

Before going back to our boats we called into the boatyard to meet Donna’s delightful rescue kittens Huey and Louie. As we entered the yard Donna called out to them and they came scampering up, jumping like dogs trying to get picked up by her.

Huey and Louie
Donna getting a cuddle

During the week we caught up on all the normal “housework” as well as a few boat “projects” such as re-doing some old sealant in the galley that did not reach Capt’n Birdseye’s (or my) standards. He also did a great job replacing bathroom taps that had tarnished over the years with brand new shiny ones!

Good work happening in the galley
It looks much neater now
The old taps were quite tarnished
One of the shiny new ones

One afternoon I wandered down our dock to say hello to Australians Jill and Shelley on S/V Eucalyptus. I had “met” Jill on an non-sailing related Facebook page (any other Chat 10 Looks 3 members out there?) so it was great to meet at last.

View from the marina. The white in the centre top of the photo is snow not clouds!

As the week wore on we met a quite a number of Finike marina residents – most of who had wintered over there but some newer arrivals too.

Meeting some of the longer term marina residents at a dock party

At a Friday night dock party we met a crowd of new people, amongst them were Roland and Dagmar a German/Swiss couple with three children. Roland very gallantly offered to go up our mast to fix the anchor light which had recently stopped working.

Roland going up our mast
His eldest son Florian helps with the safety line

When he got up there he found a loose connection and was able to fix it straight away which was absolutely fantastic!

When Roland got up to the top he found a loose connection
View from the top of the mast
Letting Roland down slowly
The rest of the family watch and wait

One of the absolute highlights of the week was a delightful visit from a rare Mediterranean monk seal. Apparently the population of this breed is estimated at less than 700 in the world and a group of around 100 of them live on the coastline of Turkey.

Can you spot the Mediterranean Monk Seal basking in the sun?

We were really fortunate to see this gorgeous creature especially as – after sunning itself some way from the dock and boats – it slowly swam right up to Sunday and came to literally an arm’s length away from me! After spending some minutes with me the seal swam sedately out of the marina.

The seal came right to our boat but I only have video of it. Here it is next door

What a fantastic welcome to Finike Marina!

The seal eventually swam sedately out of the marina
What a fantastic welcome to Finike Marina!

Published by

Salty tales from Bali Hai

In 2015, after a break from cruising of almost 30 years, my husband and I sailed off into the sunset - this time to the wonderful Islands of Indonesia and beyond. Three years passed and we swapped sails for wheels driving through Scandinavia and Europe in a motor home. Now we are on the brink of another adventure - buying a Lagoon 420 Catamaran in Athens. This is our story.

4 thoughts on “Drama as our anchor gets stuck and other stories”

  1. What a cruisey time! No wonder the boats are called names like Sunday & Liberte… every day is a day off for fun & discovery & adventure. Living a dream. Good on you two intrepids. Xx Tas & Lib

    Like

  2. Just an afterthought, which may be of interest to you two, on Alonnisos ( next to Skopelos) there is a marine park, which protects quite a large Monk Seal population.

    In haste

    Lots of love

    Sally&Georgios xox

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s