Monday, 12 September 2011

Bay hopping

We've been out of range of technology for a few days as we bay-hopped our way up the coast.
As we have no plan other than to be in Townsville marina by the end of the month (in order to fly to Melbourne), we decided to explore all the little bays that we passed by as we headed south earlier this year.
It's been a beaut, and beautiful, experience.
Morning in Double Bay East
It helps that we're always heading north of course, so wind and tide are generally with us for our little `hops', but despite BOM predictions to the contrary, the nights have been so still and calm in these bays, it's lulling us into a sense of ``maybe this is what it's supposed to be like most of the time''.
Double Bay East again - with morning rainbow
We remained in Double Bay East for a couple of nights then moved one bay north to Double Bay West (very inventive names!).
We were alone here all day then towards late afternoon several other boats came in and anchored tucked in for protection against the rare northerly and a predicted wind change to south west during the night. Apart from a few stray gusts, the night was peaceful and calm.
We met up with the owners of another catamaran Backchat in funny circumstances. We noticed they'd dinghyed in close into the mangroves, assuming (correctly) they were setting some crab pots. As daylight was fading we decided to haul our dinghy up and having done so, looked around and noticed the Backchat tender was being rowed back from shore.
Thinking their motor had broken down, we re-launched our dinghy and went ``to the rescue''. Approaching them (at this point they'd almost got back to their boat) we realised they probably didn't need rescuing as both had broad smiles on their faces. Turns out Jenny, the rower, is/was a white water rafting instructor and likes to keep her hand in on the oars. Anyway, we had a good laugh over a drink and next morning were the recipients of a beaut mud crab which we had for dinner last night.
Following our Double Bay anchorages, we motored around the corner to Erlando Bay. It was a lovely bay except for the Keep Out signs along the beachfront of the closed-down resort (yet another one). We spent the morning there and met up with the owners of Midnight Blue who were heading south. It's great to have these catch-ups with other `cat' owners. We always learn something and hopefully share something in return.
Jonah Bay
Random rocks - I liked the colours.
Our next sail took us around George Point and into Jonah Bay where we anchored for the night. The bay had a great beach to explore with several fishing camps tucked away in the bush. We met one camp and the bloke who came out to greet us grew up in Mentone and went to St Bede's (same as both my brothers for those who wouldn't realise the link).
Looking towards Bowen from Gloucester Passage this morning
Yesterday we briefly visited Dingo Beach but the outgoing tide and the extent of the reef didn't lend itself to lunch at the onshore pub (reputed to be very good), so we continued on to Montes, in the Gloucester Channel, and had a beaut lunch there instead, enjoying the company of a honeymooning couple from Brisbane and also the owners of the catamaran Endless Summer which was anchored out front with us.
We also spotted a whale breaching several times well south of Gloucester Island. It must have been huge as it was a long way away and its massive body could be clearly seen leaving the water and crashing back in. Spectacular.
Today we are planning to duck around the corner to Sinclair Bay. It's less than three nautical miles so hardly a big day - unless of course we decide to explore somewhere else as well.
NB I know people are still having problems commenting on the blog. I don't know why it's not happening for you as I've removed any possible restrictions. If I discover any clues I'll post them on the page.
* Go Sam Stosur - what a champion.


  1. Okay, random comment to check its working. It all looks beautiful (just like you), trust me when I say you are definately in the right place!

  2. Just for others, select anonymous, then preview, then post!

  3. Yeah, go Sam great win.
    All the pics look fab esp Jonah bay.

  4. Thanks Anonymous whoever you are though the ``just like you'' comment narrows it down.

  5. I passed that onto Mark as well about your encounter he is an old ST BEDES boy,
    gee you have been lucky with the whale sightings