Archive for May, 2012
We were well settled into marina life at Half Moon Bay Marina (about 15 miles north of Cairns by sea) then we sailed back to Cairns to haul out. However complications with the haul at Norship, and we didn’t like the low tide booking at Crusing Yacht Squadron with the pilings threatening to make shreds of Crusoe’s nice topside paint, we canceled. Before we canceled Raewyn and I had gone back to Half Moon Bay to retrieve the car by bus so that we would be mobile during the haul out. We spent a night at the lower end of Admiralty Island, at the entrance to Smith Creek. The next day Raewyn drove the car back to the marina while I sailed Crusoe back alone.
On the way back I was welcomed with a couple of intense rain squalls with 30+ kt winds, I reduced sail to about a small handkerchief and was doing 7-8 kts, however I only wanted to make 4-5 kts as I was on low tide -rising and needed a mid tide + to enter the marina. I got there on the second hour of the rise and had to enter with the now familiar wind on the beam, only this time with the centerboard progressivly coming up as I was seeing the bottom getting closer, I was about half the keel up rounding the corner into the marina and could see Raewyn waiting at the fuel dock for me. She was able to snap this picture of me entering, it calms down about 100% just as you clear the breakwall seen on the right.
The next day we drove to Port Douglas to meet up with an old friend I went to Maritime College (TAFE) with here in Cairns, Jon Burnett, his partner Iris and their pet “goose” Scuppers, (they go nowhere without Scuppers).
The way home we blew the engine on the rental car but Jon, Iris and Scuppers came to the rescue, the rental car agent was there in 15min and Raewyn returned with him for a replacement car. We all ended up at Crusoe about the same time and now we have an upgraded car! We had fun catching up after 22 years since we last saw each other, Scuppers settled into the center cockpit with ocassional honks when she heard us laugh loudly, quite a character.
This is most likley the last post until mid July when I return from work, and we will make the passage from Cairns to the top of Australia in Gove, where we plan to clear customs, and head to Indonesia-Malaysia. We decided to move a little quicker than originally planned and haul Crusoe in Kudat on the way to KK Malaysia.
We overnighted at Orpheus Island, after a nice gennaker sail from Magnetic Island.
We had a beautiful sunset over Hinchinbrook Island, had a feed and were then fast asleep for an early morning departure at 0 dark 30. We covered the 65 miles before dark making Mourilyan Harbour on the slack tide, averaging well over 6.5 knots as we did the 65 NM in about 9 hours.
We found the new gennaker easy to launch and recover, the only problem winds most the way to Cairns have been in the 25-30 kt range and well out of the 15-18kt range for our gennaker.
We left first light for the final 50 miles to Cairns, in 25kt winds and were doing 7-8 kts most the way, we came down the channel into Half Moon Bay Marina with the wind howling on our beam and it was quite hair raising. We made it in OK but it was not for the fainthearted. We made it into the marina, and our assigned spot was right at the entrance. We were quickly berthed and then the pressure was off to just relax…..not…we had some maintenance issues, had to clean the boat but before long we were in the Yorkeys Knob Boating Club having a feed and relaxing.
Our berth in Half Moon Bay Marina, you can see the entrance right behind Crusoe.
We have 7 days to explore, rest and catch up with old friends, then we head to Norship to haul out Crusoe for a quick bottom paint, then back to our berth at Half Moon Bay. I will have another few weeks then back to work. We rented a “wreck” for the remainder of the time I am here, so we are mobile. When I return from work next hitch we will have 8 weeks to make it up the N. Queensland coast across the Gulf of Carpenteria to Gove where we will clear customs then through Indonesia and to Northern Borneo Malaysia, where we plan to hang our hats for awhile.
Hi folks this blog side is becoming more of a log of Crusoe, we welcome any topics that may be interesting.
Well we never were too enthused with crowds of yachties and the Whitsundays have no shortage of them. We spent a night in Cid Harbour and received a perfect weather forecast for proceeding north, so we made a command decision on the spot to continue to Magnetic Island, north around 130 nm. So we headed out to 15-18 kt SSE wind that saw us sitting on a comfortable 6kt average… until around 2am when we were confronted head on with an opposing tide that slowed us to about 4.5-5kt. However we were treated to what the news is reporting as the “super moon” rise that was simultaneous with the sun set, and it was during perfect sailing conditions on a perfect night so we were happy with our decision to head north.
These 2 pictures were taken 30 seconds from each other, the sunset was off the bow and the moonrise off the stern!
The first hoist of the new Gennaker!
The arrival into Magnetic was nice and uneventful and it was nice to drop the dingy in the water and go ashore.
We like to keep our family and friends up to date with our progress, but we welcome all visitors and comments.
Well…. 5 days in Mackay and quite a bit of cash later the Gen set is functioning properly. We departed 4 May (Friday!!) at 1400 to Keswick Island, only 15 NM north of Mackay, but had a good breeze and were able to sail right up to the anchorage, a very uncomfortable one at that as we rolled all night.
We woke at first light and headed for the Whitsundays, since we were making a good 6-7 knot average we decided to do some sightseeing and take a route that weaved us through the Islands, winds were 15-18kt. We passed outside Shaw and Lindeman Islands and headed for the passage between Whitsunday Island and Hamilton Island, we had to watch for “Surprise Rock” but it was low tide on arrival and it was clearly visible. Coming down the narrow passage was lovely at a leisurely 4-5 kts, the resort at Hamilton became visible with the high rises and parasailers.
Keswick to Whitsundays Hamilton Isn. Resort
Undeveloped side of Hamilton (previously owned by ex Beatle George Harrison)
We safely navigated the narrow channel and rounded the corner into Cid Harbour, dropped the anchor and watched a beautiful sunset with an amazing moon rise over the hill off the bow of Crusoe, a very visually stimulating experience.
Moon Rise over Cid Harbour
Plan is to cruise here for the next couple days and leave for an overnighter to Magnetic Island on Thursday 10th as the breeze is forecast for 20+ kts and will make for good time for the 125nm run downwind. We will head to Stonehaven anchorage today, just a short hop to the next northerly island (Hook Island) then Hayman Island the following day. As the winds will be light we will break out the new Gennaker and practice hoisting and flying it…next post.