Odyssey's Journal

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Odyssey anchored in Belfast, Maine
Odyssey anchored in Belfast, Maine

 2017 Float Plan

Our 2017 Float Plan begins with a 4,000 mile voyage to Cork, Ireland departing Sarasota the beginning of May. Captain Jim Mobley will be joining us aboard for the crossing helping us with mechanical and cosmetic maintenance, navigational planning and watch keeping while underway. Our goal is to have Odyssey fully prepared to depart from Palm Beach by May 1st, and we will get under way at the first acceptable weather window thereafter.

The first leg is the 250 mile journey to the East Coast of Florida to Palm Beach Gardens where we will spend a week with final system inspections at James Knight’s Yacht Tech, who will already have preformed significant mechanical, electrical and cosmetic maintenance and new installations during the months of December and January.

The Second Leg is 880 miles from West Palm Beach to Bermuda, which will take under 6 days. We will stop in Bermuda to refuel in St. Georges, insure the weather for the next leg is acceptable and do whatever maintenance may be necessary.

The Third Leg is a 1,700 mile run from Bermuda to the Azores, which will take about 10 days. This is the longest leg of the trip, but typically the calmest, with average seas less than 4’. Again we will stop to refuel in Horta, insure the weather for the next leg is acceptable and do whatever maintenance may be necessary.

The Fourth Leg is a 1,200 mile run from the Azores to Cork, Ireland which should take about 7 days. As we head North the sky’s will get greyer, and we will move into the westerly’s with higher seas. June is the best time of year to make this trip and average seas will be about 5’, but higher in inclement weather. Nothing Odyssey cannot comfortably transit.

We have reservations to spend two weeks or so with Odyssey moored at the Royal Cork Yacht Club in Crosshaven, Ireland, which is the oldest yacht club in the world! Nancy and I plan to take a road tour of Ireland. While I spent many years in Ireland in business, there is much of the island I have never seen, and of course I am looking forward to the opportunity to visit old friends and colleagues in Castlebar and Dublin.

I find that float plans change on a regular basis for many reasons: Weather, Maintenance, or simply liking a place and deciding to stay longer than planned. So while we don ‘t have firm plans at this time, it is possible that from Crosshaven we will cruise along the southern and eastern coasts of Ireland and cross the Irish Sea to Scotland. We might moor for 10 days and take a 7-day road trip exploring the interior of England, Scotland and Wales before transiting the 26 locks of the Caledonian Canal, through Loch Ness to the East Coast of Scotland arriving in the beginning of August.

From here we might make a two-day passage across the Irish Sea to the West Coast of Norway and spend the first two weeks of August visiting the Fiords and working our way along the South Coast to Oslo. We could spend a week moored in Oslo exploring and then take a 10 cruise down the coast to Copenhagen, Denmark. The Danish Archipelago which consists of over five hundred islands, so there are many harbors to stop and explore!

Again we could take a week to explore the local area while moored in Copenhagen before beginning our 21-day cruise to Amsterdam through the Kiel Canal.

We plan to arrive at the new Amsterdam Marina www.amsterdammarina.com on October 1st where we will lay over for the winter.

We expect to return to the states for the Holidays and then, having Odyssey as our base, explore Western Europe by train in the early spring before departing for our next adventure

Don & Nancy

Odyssey' s Blog


After spending a number of wonderful summers in Belfast, Maine, and reading Rick Steve’s rather negative reviews of Belfast, Ireland, we are pleasantly surprised with our sojourn to this part of Ireland.  We arrived at the “Self Service” marina.  

No employees, and an automatic ticket machine where you pay for your dockage, get a combination to the electronic gate and can buy magnetic striped tickets to put in to the power port for shore power to buy electricity for the boat!  The fee for three nights dockage was 50 pounds ($75!) The marina is located in the “Titanic Quarter" just a short walk from where the Titanic was built, but also a short walk from downtown.

In our last post we mentioned the giant wind generators being assembled at the mouth of the harbor….  these are built by Harland and Wolf who in their heyday employed 65,000 people in Belfast, 1,600 of them just building furniture for the ships they built!  One of these ships was the Titanic, and of course the two Olympic Class sister ships of the same design, RMS Olympic and RMS Britiania.  But Belfast was more than just shipbuilding, they also boasted a major Cigarette and Cigar manufacturer,  the largest rope manufacturing plant  and the the largest Linen mill in the world which supplied 65,000 napkins to the Titanic! (guess they didn’t have laundry facilities!) 

The "Titanic Experience” was a pleasant surprise and a most awesome display depicting the history of Belfast, the building of the Titanic through the disaster and the underwater discovery (by the Woods Hole team from my native Cape Cod!)

The “Troubles”, also known as the "Northern Ireland Conflict", from the 1960s to 1998 brought Belfast to it’s knees.  US Senator George Mitchell finally negotiated a peace settlement amongst the many parties of the complicated conflict which was much more than simply Catholic and Protestant rivalries.   Today the huge Samson and Goliath gantry cranes still dominate the waterfront….

but I have counted 18 building cranes such as this one shown behind Odyssey constructing new buildings in the city!

and with the magnificent architecture of the 19th century, coupled with the prosperity that peace is bringing………..

City Hall…………                                                       Protestant Church “Block”!

and Albert’s clock tower

I predict that this will be a major “GO TO’ destination within 25 years!

Tomorrow we head further North…..  we will delay our departure until 1:30 pm to avoid the 3-5 knot currents running  against us (and get the advantage of the tidal current going with us!) as we make our way to the northern coast of Ireland…..

Fair Winds & Following Seas,

Don & Nancy

Current Blog Article: Odyssey-Journal---July-11--2017---Belfast--Ireland


SUBJECT: Re: Odyssey-Journal---July-11--2017---Belfast--Ireland Thanks for sharing! Sent from my iPhone TEAM MILLIKIN Lynn Millikin Capt. (R) and Sales Executive, FYBA SYS Yacht Sales LMillikin21@[...] 910-690-8695 > On Jul 11, 2017, at 4:13 PM, Odyssey''s Journal (www.odyssey5546.net) wrote: > >

 Lynn Millikin  7/11/2017


SUBJECT: Re: Odyssey-Journal---July-11--2017---Belfast--Ireland Nice. I had heard what you heard. Nice to know it is not like that. Sent from my iPhone > On Jul 11, 2017, at 4:12 PM, Odyssey''s Journal (www.odyssey5546.net) wrote: > >

 Donald Macaulay  7/11/2017