Oban

From Corpach at the end of the Caledonian Canal we drove to Oban. Oban is the largest city on the north west coast of Scotland and has two marinas. We chose the Oban Transit Marina, which is close to the city center. Here we wanted to add to our stocks.

Road from Corpach to Oban

We expected little wind and feared that we would have to cover most of the way by machine, but the weather played into our hands. It was almost always four to five wind speeds, in gusts this sometimes went up to seven wind speeds. This is due to the high mountains that line the Lochs in Scotland. So it was a fast ride, which was great fun for both of us.

On the way is a narrow point, Corran Ferry, where there is a good swirl of the tidal current.

Swirl in the water through the tidal current

These vortices rip wildly and the ship tends to circle uncontrollably. Of course we can't do this with the autopilot, instead Jens was at the helm, who had never been able to experience this. I pulled him up vigorously with every turn and asked if he was still drunk from yesterday evening because he couldn't drive straight.

Then we could relax again sailing along the island of Lismore and after a few hours we sailed towards the lighthouse at the southern tip of Lismore.

Between the lighthouse of Lismore and the lighthouse on Ladys Rock there is a passage that is several hundred meters wide and only 12 meters deep. There is also violent tidal currents and turbulence. However, while the tide was still flowing in our direction at Corran, we had countercurrent before Lismore. It was quite decent, we made almost six knots through the water, there were only two on the ground - so we had four knots countercurrent.

A motor glider without sail sailed from the right. So I thought the situation was perfectly clear. We under sail are required to hold a course and the other has to dodge. That's how I learned it in my training. Jens too. Only the Englishman somehow disagreed. For a quarter of an hour both boats were on a collision course. I was thinking about when to wake him up with my foghorn when he finally took the gas out and passed behind our stern. It was about the IJsselmeer-Saturday afternoon distance, only that the IJsselmeer has no currents. I could easily have thrown a stone over it, an ambitious cat would also have made the jump.

Lismore Lighthouse with a crazy Englishman

For Jens it was a feast. He documented the swell in front of the lighthouse in the picture and also photographed the wrongdoer. The waves at this point only come about through the tidal current.

Sissi in Oban

An hour later we were in the marina and we were fine. I ordered a table in the fish restaurant and there we had delicious lobsters. Wow! I have never had a lobster, but I plan to eat one again soon. The critters are really delicious.

The stockpiling plan worked. From previous visits here we knew that there was a quarter of an hour walk between the footbridge and the next Tesco. We grabbed a luggage cart that we pushed through the Tesco. Now we have supplies for several weeks, canned food even across the Atlantic. Probably.

Stockpiling

After the work was done we went to the best showers on the west coast of Scotland, because this marina has them. Approx. nine square meters per shower cabin, clean, equipped with underfloor heating and hairdryer. The water runs as long as you want and the temperature can be adjusted from ice cold to just before the boiling point. A perfect shower.

Then of course we stayed true to our motto and visited The Lorne. I got to know this pub 12 years ago when I was on a motorcycle in Oban. I could still remember the food, which wasn't too bad for a Scottish pub. We both had fish and chips. Has to be too. Of course not comparable to the lobster, but food and drinks for two people only cost as much as half a lobster in the restaurant. Without drinks.

The Lorne

We did not take part in the evening pub quiz. It was also a good thing, because the boss mumbled so much that we didn't even understand the questions correctly.

Oban is a great place to get the boat in shape and to replenish the supplies. We appreciate that.