Ilsvag


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Our “move the boat every day” plan faltered when we reached beautiful Ilsvag at the head of Sandeidfjorden. We ended up spending three days in this scenic, sheltered anchorage and made our second Norwegian hike of 2020, to the summit of 1830 ft (557 m) Oktarenuten. From there we could see down into our anchorage below, south through Sandeidfjorden and north across land to Hardangerfjorden.

Below are trip highlights from July 20th through 22nd, 2020. Click any image for a larger view, or click the position to view the location on a map. And a live map of our current route and most recent log entries always is available at mvdirona.com/maps.

7/20/2020
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Frovika
Sheer cliff at Frovika as we head north into Vindafjorden.
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Cloud
Low cloud looking north into Sandeidfjorden at the intersection with Vindafjorden and Yrkefjorden. We’ve loving being back in the Norwegian fjords.
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Waterfall
Waterfall tumbling down the cliff at Elvaneset.
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Bridge
A wonderful setting for a cabin, with a bridge to their boathouse over the waterfall we just spotted. The shoreline is steep here and we can bring Dirona quite close to shore.
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Spitfire
Spitfire enjoying the fjord cruise from the cockpit and licking his chops after a meal.
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Turning Corner
As we turned the corner into Ilsvag, this spectacular scene opened up.
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Dirona
Dirona at anchor in Ilsvag. We’re thinking our “move the boat every day” plan is going to fail here. :)
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Reflections
The hills around Ilsvag reflecting into still waters with Dirona visible at center. What a beautiful place.
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Remote Control Base Station
The base station for our boat remote control is held up with an industrial Velcro strip. The adhesive failed, so James is installing it with fasteners.
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Water Level
Two of our HVAC systems failed recently, and we’ve been working through various troubleshooting steps. Here we have detached the outflow line from the master stateroom system and installed a short length of hose in order to pull any potential air out of the line. The system is below the waterline, so we have to be careful to keep that hose raised above the water level where James is pointing to.
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Vacuuming Lines
Vacuuming the HVAC outflow line to remove any air and get the system working again. We did pull some air, but unfortunately the system still doesn’t heat or cool.
7/21/2020
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Anchorage View
Early morning view of the anchorage at Ilsvag (clockwise from top left corner is the view forward, aft, starboard, and port).
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Ilsvag
The morning is clear and calm at Ilsvag, but we’ve got rain coming.
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Rain
The weather in Norway changes quickly. The morning’s sunny weather gave way to heavy rain.
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Replacing Control Board
In our continued troubleshooting of our failing HVAC systems, we tried replacing the control board for the master stateroom unit. Given the symptoms, this is highly unlikely to improve the situation, but we decided to give it a try.
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Coolant Pressure
We don’t have air conditioning pressure gauges, but as a quick test on whether the system is still able to maintain a charge, James just touched the valve to see if there was pressure. There was pressure and there is no oil or evidence of leaks anywhere on the system, so refrigerant charge isn’t the likely cause of the problem. It’s still possible but less likely.

Our conclusion is that the reversing valve on both units have stuck in the middle allowing the compressor to pump into the reversing valve straight back to the compressor.

The reversing valve is switched positively from end to end by pressure differential in the system. Since the compressor is producing very little flow and there is almost no temperature differential between the low and high pressure sides, it’s likely not producing much pressure differential making it more likely that the reversing valve won’t switch positively in either direction. It’s also possible that the reversing valve failed and the compressor or valves were damaged by the compressor output being connected directly to the input on the compressor.

But, whatever the cause, the system needs a new valve, a new compressor, and a recharge. Since these are eleven year old units, we’ll replace them. But we’ll need to ship them from the US since they are 60hz systems.

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Visitor
One of the residents from the area came over to say hello. He lives on his parent’s farm nearby, but frequently visits with his grandparents who live at Ilsvag. The Hasle Summer Fun boat he’s driving is amazingly popular in Norway. We’ve seen dozens so far, in a range of bright colors. They look quite durable and stable.
7/22/2020
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Spitfire
Spitfire standing on the hatch above the pilot house and drinking “fresh stream water”. He seems to really like Norway, and has been spending much more time outside than in the past few months.
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Tender
The tender tied off to a tree in the small harbour off the town of Sandeid for a hike up Oktarenuten.
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Trailhead
At the trailhead for Oktarenuten, just across the road from where we moored the tender.
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Sandeid
Nice view back to Sandeid from 330 ft (100 m) up.
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Ladder
Most trails in Norway run through pastures with either gates to pass through the fence, or ladders to climb over.
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Harbour
Looking down to our tender moored at upper left, 1218 ft (371 m) below us.
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John Deere
With 11,150 trouble-free hours on our John Deere 6068AFM75 main engine, it’s no surprise that we’re big John Deere fans. We are always happy to see one out in the wild.
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Summit
Looking east from the summit of Oktarenuten 1830 ft (557 m) above the town of Sandeid. In most countries, this would be an exceptional hike, but it doesn’t even make the highlight list for the area. We’re really loving being back in Norway.
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Lunch
Lunch with a spectacular view south down Sandeidfjorden. Dirona is just visible at anchor as a small white speck in the bay at the center of the picture (click image for a larger view).
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Romsa Islands
The view north from the summit of Oktarenuten to the Romsa Islands in Bjoafjorden. We anchored there two years ago for a tender run up Akrafjorden to the famous Langfossen waterfall.
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Lamb
A young lamb, looking barely able to stand, on the trail back down from Oktarenuten.
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Cygnets
Cygnets and swans off Sandeid.
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Modern Houses
Several beautiful modern houses, recently constructed at Sandeid. The Norwegian economy seems as healthy as ever.
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Rope Swing
Rope swing just south of Sandeid. The water would have to get a lot warmer than the current 63°F (18°C) for us to swim here.
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Instant Fuel Station
This is a modular fuel station that can be trucked in and deployed anywhere with power.
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Vikedalselva
We ran the tender over to Vikedal and up the river Vikedalselva to a beautiful set of falls.
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Vikedal Marina
Plenty of space at the guest docks in Vikedal.
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Crane Stuck
The crane “winch down” failed, but after the tender was on board, so it wasn’t a problem. We’ve not seen this before, and later in the day it started working again. Troubleshooting the problem is easier when it’s failing, so we’ll wait for the next failure.
Show locations on map Click the travel log icon on the left to see these locations on a map, with the complete log of our cruise.

On the map page, clicking on a camera or text icon will display a picture and/or log entry for that location, and clicking on the smaller icons along the route will display latitude, longitude and other navigation data for that location. And a live map of our current route and most recent log entries always is available at mvdirona.com/maps.

 
 


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2 comments on “Ilsvag
  1. John S. says:

    Looks utterly lovely in Norway. I read somewhere that anchoring in many fjords is difficult as the water is extremely deep right up to the head . Have you had no problem finding usable anchoring spots?

    • 100% right. Norway is exceptional.

      There are a vast number of places to anchor but many fjords have very few place to anchor due to depth. Some will have shallows at the very end that can be anchored. Some will have shallow coves along the way. But there are a vast number of really exceptionally nice anchorages and we always find something nice in the area we want to be. So the quick summary is depths can be a problem but there are always good anchorages near where you need to be. Two great tools for Norway: 1) a fast tender with long range — being able to blast down a fjord at 32 kts (59 kph) is wonderful, and 2) ability anchor deep — we have 500′ of anchor rode and can anchor in depths up to 160 to 170′. It’s rare we use that full depth capability but anchoring in 100′ is fairly common and it’s nice to have the ability to go deeper when needed. In Alaska we had a wonderful anchorage right in front of a 300′ glacier anchored in 146′ of water. Wonderful!

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