Sailing the 3 lakes in Switzerland

In the summer of 2015, carried out for the very first time, a rather extraordinary Sail Turn: The  journey began at Ipsach, continued over three lakes and two canals and ended at Murten. Tents and hostels provided the accommodation en-route. At the end of the 3-Lake-Turn, everyone agreed that the adventure was definitely worth undertaking. After five days intensive sailing, the teams were able to prove that such a trip was possible with the Hansa 303.

The three-lake-trip started in Ipsach on Lake Biel. On a very hot summer’s day and despite a consequently weak wind, the boats made an impressive start in the first few hours. So much so, that they celebrated with a barbeque in the Erlach Club House.

Through the Zihl- and Broye canals

On the journey from Erlach to Cudrefin on Lake Neuchâtel, the team of five boats crossed the Zihl canal. Unfortunately, because of the oncoming traffic and narrow waterways, sailing was not possible.  Instead, the team called on their motorboat to tow them through. On the Wednesday, the team had to wait until the evening, before the sails could be set. The group used the rest period to travel over the lake by motorboat and explore the impressive city of Neuchâtel.

Around 19:30 pm, the impressive cloud movement meant the boats were able to carry out several manoeuvres on the lake.

The next stage of the journey took the teams towards the Broye canal. Once again, the sails were rolled in and the team used the motorboat to be pulled through the narrow waterways. Just once did it get very tight; when a passenger ship and a yacht passed the Hansa 303 boats. In sailing a course close to the shoreline, the boats had to take special care manoeuvring past the trees, half submerged in the lake.

Once everyone had reached Lake Murten, the weather improved and there were ideal winds conditions for the sailors to test their skills at regatta racing. A course was set from the Broye canal to the harbour at Murten with several races testing the teams right to the end.

Goals achieved in every aspect.

The last day of the three-lake-trip was spent in the picturesque town of Murten. In the morning, a TV crew from Swiss television accompanied the Sailability. The intention was to produce an image film for a foundation. Unfortunately there was very little wind on the lake for any action sequences to be filmed.

By the evening, everyone concluded that the three-lake-trip had presented many challenges, not least because of the soring temperatures. But that it was a super adventure that will live long in the memories of all those that took part.

Thanks to Claudia Schmid for the report and photos

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