04 Aug - 10 Aug 2002 Stromboli

Mediterranean Sea
Tyrrhenian Sea
Italian Republic
Aeolian Archipelago
Stromboli Island
San Vincenzo
SY "Kamu II" anchoring off.

Click below for a bird's-eye view of our anchorage:

Click here for a summary of this year's travels:
2002 Map

Logging the sailed distance ("between Scylla and Charybdis") of about 40 nm from Marina di Scilla to Stromboli Island in about ten hours over a mirror-like sea that despite its calm appearance revealed several "plumes" of gas bubbles which reached the sea surface from the bottom of the Tyrrhenian Sea and indicated that we were approaching the volcanic Strombolian Archipelago.

Witnessing at dusk the spectacular, virtually continuous volcanic eruptions of Stromboli's 925-m high rumbling crater (named by volcanologists as “Strombolian activities” thus describing any mildly explosive, regular volcanic eruptions without lava flow) from opposite the Sciara del Fuoco (N 38° 48.62' E 015° 12.42'), a big horseshoe-shaped depression generated in the last 13,000 years by several collapses.

Anchoring off on the E side of the northernmost of the eight Aeolian Islands (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) and watching other yachts' anchors being dragged during the small hours of a stormy night and making way for some irate Italian yotties who could not handle their yachts properly; and, a few hours later, fighting some big tsunami-like swell (the aftermath of the gale) which threateningly washed over the island, flooded the beaches and suddenly reduced the depth below our keel by 2 m for a few seconds.

Climbing Stromboli with two guides at night, arriving at the crater at midnight and looking straight into hell (waiting in vain for the appearance of Axel and Otto Lidenbrock), smelling the devil's bad breath, and being impressed by the fireworks displays of few second-lasting bursts emitting ash, incandescent lava fragments and stone blocks up to a few hundred meters high, caused every 15 - 20 minutes by regular eruptions.

Circumnavigating the 56-m high, rocky and tiny island of Strombolicchio, slightly more than 1 nm NE off Stromboli Island, and remembering when Matt had navigated around the Aeolian Archipelago during the 22nd Middle Sea Race in 2001 and had identified the white-flashing light on Strombolicchio on his port at night as a given turning waypoint.