Pilot station

Wednesday 12 September

Back in our own company, we turned to organising the boat for our next passages, provisioning and stowing.  We also enjoyed exploring the Pilot Museum, once the site of the oldest Pilot station in Denmark, perfectly positioned to meet and escort the convoys of large ships that ply the tricky waters of the Øresund between the North and Baltic Seas.

When the system for allocating pilots to commercial vessels became automated and centralised, the station in Dragør was closed down, but enterprising local people took the opportunity to turn it into a museum, and it remains exactly as it was when the last pilot closed the door behind him for the final time.  Now antiquated radio communications equipment remains on the desks alongside large scale paper charts and record books, while there is clear evidence of how the men relaxed, slept and catered for themselves during shifts.  The buildings offer a fascinating insight into another way of life, and remain a testament to the brave local men who made this often difficult work their life’s calling.

Before leaving Dragør, we were delighted to finally make the acquaintance of Encore, a red (trimmed) Ovni that we first encountered in a pretty anchorage in the Swedish archipelago.  Here she was crewed by the Skipper and his wife, born South African but adopted Kiwis, and their guests, her sister and partner.  Another very pleasant exchange of hospitality and sharing of sailing yarns was enjoyed by all, and in the way of these things, contact details exchanged.