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Removing a bird's nest from the top of the mast | Cruising Attitude Sailing Blog - Discovery 55 We started to notice them during our second day in the Helsingør marina — huge black and grey jackdaws — flying around the top of mast.  That evening, the first big branch fell on the deck. And then a second. We thought they must be building a nest somewhere. We never thought of looking up.

The next morning, a couple from another boat passed by and asked “have you noticed that you have a huge bird’s nest at the top of your mast?”  Needless to say, we had not noticed!

Removing a huge bird nest from your mast - not as easy as it seems! | Cruising Attitude Sailing Blog - Discovery 55

Removing a huge bird nest – not as easy as it seems!

Jacques volunteered to go up using one of the spinnaker halyards, with me winding the winch.  The winches on the mast are not electric, so I was in fact  winding Jacques and his 70 kilos up 24 meters of mast.  Each turn of the winch covered maybe 10 centimetres. The next time, we’ll use the electric utility winch on the cabin top so that I won’t have to wind 70 kilos 240 times.  Or it will be me that goes up instead of Jacques…

View of Helsingør marina and castle from 24 meters up the mast | Cruising Attitude Sailing Blog - Discovery 55

View of Helsingør marina and castle from 24 meters up the mast

The nest was not easy to remove!  First of all, you’re 24 meters in the air, suspended by a slim rope, and secondly, the branches were really quite woven together. Jacques had to take it apart, branch by branch or risk damaging the delicate wind indicator that you see on the left side of the above photo. Not a fun job!

View from 24 meters up the mast | Cruising Attitude Sailing Blog - Discovery 55

View from the mast

Repairing a Leak

A  leak on a boat can make any boat owner anxious.  Fortunately, this one was at least of the fresh water variety, meaning that it came from inside the boat – not outside (the first thing you do is taste it to find out).  The leak  was showing up as a thin stream of water going into the bilge, but not all the time, which made it puzzling. After two weeks we finally traced it to the washing machine.  The installer had not screwed the intake hose to the cold water supply tightly enough, so water was gushing out with every wash.

Repairing a leak | Cruising Attitude Sailing Blog - Discovery 55

Jacques is sitting on the washing machine, located under the navigation table seating. The access to the machine is in the shower, which is behind the nav station seat.

Repairing a leak | Cruising Attitude Sailing Blog - Discovery 55

Thanks to the enormous storage space in our boat’s workshop, we had all of the tools and products we needed to take care of the problem. A Swiss Army knife always comes in handy as well.