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Old 22-06-2018, 03:24   #1
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From The Netherlands to Med....

Hello Sailors!

3 years ago my wife and I, we decided to realize my dream, and I bought an old, beautiful lady in Workum, The Netherlands: a Korneuburg C&C 27. I have lived close to the Tri Border area (Germany, The Netherlads and Belgium) for 4 years and praticed in the lakes between Wessem and Roermond (NL) but now is time to move back to my country, Italy.
In 2016 when I started thinking about moving back to Italy, my plan was to hire a transport company and have the boat delivered to Nice or Cannes, and then sail with an experienced friend to Italy. But the prices for road transportation were pretty low, compared to the quotes I've got recently (twice the 2016 quotes)
I desperately want to bring my boat with me and I've explored all the possibilities to reach the Mediterranean but I haven't cleared my mind yet.
My sailing experience is very limited so I would neither be able to sail all the way around Europe by myself , nor I'd be able to navigate through the 255 locks between Wessem and the Mediterranean Sea.
I would be happy to listen to your thoughts and advices about the best solution...
Road transport would cost more than 3900 euros which for my family in this period, with all the expenses we have, would be a very, very , very big effort...

Here is Homer from Workum to Wessem
and here... just sailing


Kind Regards,
Marco & Homer
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Old 22-06-2018, 04:39   #2
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

Marco, I think the canal route is do-able solo. You just need to take your time and think things through before hand and if it all goes pear shaped, don't worry, there is always someone around to help. Your boat handling at the end of the trip will be much better.



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Old 22-06-2018, 04:57   #3
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

The boat looks very nice and is definitely capable of going to Italy.

Canals. The locks are a no-brainer, after the first 10 you know what to do. I guess your draft is not restrictive. There are several ways to choose from. You get a nice, mostly stress-free experience.

Sail around Spain is a different beast, against the prevailing winds until you reach Portugal, and you probably will have to deal with weather. I would not recommend it, but also doable if you find some experienced crew.

As a guess, the cost for either trip will be about the same as the road transport. Free vacation included, though.
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Old 22-06-2018, 05:47   #4
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

a paid delivery crew including marina stops,fuel ,food, flights etc will easily cost more than 4k euro. it is a min of 2300nm to the first stop in italy!

do it yourself via the canals.
look for someone who will do it for free,and pay the expenses.
truck it.
sell it and buy another in france,italy or croatia.
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Old 22-06-2018, 09:37   #5
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

The trip by sea to Italy has some challenging bits and is a long way. Now the but! I also has some really good bits that are not difficult and you don't have to do it all in one go. I would suggest you think about doing this route and using it as both a great experience and a chance to really learn to sail. May be worth booking RYA instructor for the first leg and do the training for coastal skipper. Once you have that get some experienced crew for the next leg or two. By the time you get to Northern Spain you will be a confident coastal skipper. Take your time and do it over one ore even two seasons (there are safe and relatively inexpensive marinas you can leave a boat in over the winter on Northern Portugal). If you are not on a delivery schedule you can avid bed weather and stay in port. You will get some pretty good experience with tides, especially around Brittany! If you time the trip to arrive in Portugal in the month before the transatlantic rally sets out in Nov you will find other boats sailing with you. I made some great friends and finished up sailing in company with other boats.
Don't get caught thinking it is easier to take the coast rout around the bay of Biscay. Pick a good weather window and get some offshore passage time! The coast is hostile, shallow and a lee shore in bad weather with few safe anchorages. In summer bad storms are rare and in deep water you get steady well organized seas not chaotic coastal chop. It takes 3-4 days.

How much it costs will depend a lot on you. Some people use lots of fuel and stay in marinas most nights, others use the anchor and sail most of the way so it basically just costs them time and food money.
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Old 22-06-2018, 09:54   #6
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

If you draw 1.4m or less there's a more attractive route than going via N Spain and Portugal. You can sail along the N French coast in fairly easy hops and then down the W Brittany coast which has some lovely ports - Camaret, Audierne, Concarneau etc and down to Bordeaux and from there down through the Canal Du Midi which I think links up with one of the other canals and comes out at Port St Louis a bit West of Marseilles. You can then coastal hop to Italy.

You didn't say where in Italy you are trying to get to!

There is a great on;line planning tool here OpenSeaMap - The free nautical chart You can plan routes and measure distances and it also gives you your waypoints which you can download into an Excel spreadsheet.

The route I am suggesting is shorter than going via Gibraltar, it also takes in some really lovely ports and has some canal aspects but not as much as picking up a canal in N France.
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Old 22-06-2018, 11:32   #7
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

He will have a fit if he sees that lot on the map but yes taking time and another experienced skipper for the first bit it's doable.

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Old 22-06-2018, 12:04   #8
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

You can turn it off Marine Traffic in the view menu.
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Old 22-06-2018, 13:04   #9
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

There is a canal to Paris and from Paris you can get to the Med via the Rhone river. I think you will have to lower the mast, but you will have to that for the Canal du Midi anyway if you go for the canal route via Bordeaux. Good luck, via the canals you can be singlehanding. Count roughly six weeks for the trip.
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Old 22-06-2018, 13:24   #10
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

Honestly Marco, right now I can't see a reason why you shouldn't be capable to do the locks or the route along the coast, or even across Biscay. Watching your video, you've already done your first passage! And as it looks like, not even with sunshiny weather and lovely temperatures!

Alright, you were with 2 people. Couldn't your wife join you so you could do the trip south together? I'm sure this would be a wonderful experience for both of you! If time is a matter, you could always do it in stages. Leave the boat somwhere for a while and come back to continue the trip (I think someone earlier suggested that as well).

The inland waterways are more protected, but you shouldn't scare yourself off the coastal route. Whatever is missing one can learn. And having your boat for a while means I'm sure you've already learned quite a lot. None of us was born knowing everything about sailing, we all had to go through this process.

Fair winds
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Old 22-06-2018, 13:38   #11
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

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Originally Posted by Reddai View Post
for my family in this period, with all the expenses we have, would be a very, very , very big effort...
Mmh, difficult. Nice boat.

I think I would (try to) sell it. Maybe its better (and/or needed?) to leave some stuff i.e. the boat behind when moving to a new place considering the family and the big effort? Btw. would you have much time to sail in Italy? And aren't the prices much higher in Italy than here in the Netherlands? Couldn't you find another boat, maybe later, in Italy? Sorry, lots of questions and no real answer.. ;-)

The quoted price is a rather large part of same-model-boats (but likely older) I found with a quick google search in the area: https://www.botentekoop.nl/zeiljachten/cc-27/1937626 or https://www.ebay-kleinanzeigen.de/s-...41964-211-2447.

Not easy. Otherwise I like the propositon by atoll: "look for someone who will do it [canal] for free, and pay the expenses.". But then you have to trust someone and accidents could happen (good insurance important).
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Old 22-06-2018, 13:41   #12
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

From the Netherlands to the Med the easiest route for a beginner is over the canals. From the Netherlands head to Maastricht then on the Maas to Namur/Belgium and after on the Meuse (French for Maas) to Pagny sur Meuse. All locks upstream. From Pagny to the beginning of the Canal des Vosges there are about 10 locks downstream. On the canal des Vosges there are 49 locks upstream. After again on the Canal des Vosges are 46 locks downstream. The following river is the Saone with all the 24 locks downstream and from Lyon the River Rhone with 12 locks downstream.
I mention upstream what means tha there is more work to pass the lock, climbing a ladder what you do not do when passing a lock downstream.


I passed in the time more than 50 locks singlehanded after one or two locks you know the system. ONE thing not to forget go forward regularly and tell the employees then you like to stop so they can relay on you.


I would not go up the river Rhine as in the lower part, there you navigate until the entrance to the River Mosel, is not canalisized and has so far strong current against you as you navigate upstream. On the Maas where is no or only very weak current. On the Saone the same but on this river it is fair for you. On the Rhone there is only stronger current after the lock of Tarascon but still fair.


You need to unstep the mast of your boat and transport it on deck; what most skippers do. It needs an easy but solid construction with some wood and ropes to securely stow the mast on deck. Give attention to fact that the overall hight must be under 3.5 m from the waterline, better 3.20m.


To step the mast there is a relatively cheap dry dock Marine at Port St. Louis du Rhone called Navy Service. Otherwise if you sail down the little River Rhone, the entrance is just one or two kms upstrem of Arles, to Aigues Mortes and Grau du Roi, it is possible to step the Mast at Port Camargue.


Good luck


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Old 22-06-2018, 14:19   #13
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

Hi Marco,

I'd recommend several coastal hops.
If you look at my website www.ladyrover.com and the 2016 logbook you can get a good experience of what you'd miss if you take the canals.
Channel Islands are wonderful and so is France.
If you take your time, you can get south pretty safely.

If you split it up in several chunks you end up with a new cruising area each year.
One challenge doing it this way is though to find a suitable storage location in between, preferably with reasonable airport connection.

One difference, my type of cruising is very relaxed it's more about seeing things and meeting new friends along the way, speed or destination are not important to me while cruising. So while some rush to get to the Med, I actually do enjoy it to take time.

Anyway, we are in Nantes now and stay another summer, unfortunately we are not fulltime cruising right now and the family wanted a children's sailing holiday.
Next year it's the bay of Biskay then.

Enjoy, whatever way you choose!

Buon viaggio,

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Old 27-06-2018, 00:31   #14
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

Wow,
I did not expect that many messages ))
Many, many thanks to everybody... I read all of them carefully and all have valid points that raised more and more doubts and questions

Sea Route:

Some of you made me thinking again about doing the trip in a couple of seasons... It would be a good option, with an experienced skipper of course.
Does anybody know how much it would cost to keep the boat on dry for the winter in Portugal ? May be in Vigo...?
I sailed only once in the Northern Sea (We did one, basic, RYA course), I've no idea how long does it take to reach Portugal from Rotterdam... Would two weeks be enough ?

Canal route:
  • What scares me the most are the commercial ships in the locks: they simply don't care about your presence and keep the engines running. During our transfer to Roermond with the mast down, I lost by mistake one rope in a lock and the current created by a commercial boat in the lock made our bow going adrift and the mast smashing the side of the lock
  • Another thing that worries me is that in the canals I have to rely 100% on the engine... what if something happens in the canal ? At sea, I'd try to sail as much as possible, and a back up would be the engine... In the canals there is no back up... and if something goes wrong I imagine myself going adrift in the canals... scary!
Wife Joining:
there is no way to convince her to join me in the transfer... she would feel too much pressure


PS Sorry for my English!

--
Marco
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Old 27-06-2018, 01:03   #15
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Re: From The Netherlands to Med....

Quote:
Originally Posted by roland stockham View Post
[...]
Don't get caught thinking it is easier to take the coast rout around the bay of Biscay. Pick a good weather window and get some offshore passage time! The coast is hostile, shallow and a lee shore in bad weather with few safe anchorages. In summer bad storms are rare and in deep water you get steady well organized seas not chaotic coastal chop. It takes 3-4 days.

How much it costs will depend a lot on you. Some people use lots of fuel and stay in marinas most nights, others use the anchor and sail most of the way so it basically just costs them time and food money.
Thank you for the heads-up about Biscay, I was thinking exactly that it would have been easier along the coast of Biscay !

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