David Jillings - Log of Badekar

Introduction to the cruise of Badekar 

I have always wanted to have a sailing adventure, and it became clear that the first available opportunity would be the summer of 2014, when both my children had finished secondary education and I no longer felt it necessary to be home for them every evening.


It has long been a fancy of mine that the family name derived from the 9 th century Danish invaders of East Anglia, in particular from Jelling in Denmark, where King Harald Bluetooth raised a great rune stone in memory of his father King Gorm. It seemed obvious that I should combine a trip to visit the Jelling stone with a sea trip, ideally in an open boat similar to that my ancestors would have arrived in, albeit with a few more modern conveniences.

I was always led to believe that the prevailing winds in our part of the world are southwesterlies. This should have made the trip simple, with the wind behind me most of the way. In fact during June, July and August of 2014 the wind was mostly from the North and East. Indeed, although the log starts on 1 July, I was ready to depart in the second week in June, but sat around impatiently for three weeks waiting for a favourable four-day forecast before setting off.

Badekar is a Drascombe Longboat well into middle age. She carried a pair of 10’ oars and a 3HP electric outboard with about 2 hours’ range for when oars just would not serve, and a big camping armchair for use as often as possible.

Badekar wore the burgee of the Pin Mill Sailing Club throughout. She should also have worn the Drascombe Association pennant, but I managed to lose it while towing the boat back from Southwold on my shake-down cruise in early June.

All times (until Esbjerg) are ship’s time, i.e. BST. I found this easier to deal with because all my tide tables and other navigation and safety information used BST.

David Jillings.

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