Tuesday, 25 September 2012

One last snorkel on the reef

Looking back  across the Great Barrieer Reef towards the mainland.

With confirmation from the rigger that he wouldn't be arriving yesterday we quickly closed hatches and untied ropes to get out of marina and the Moon River on the dropping tide - usually a no-no for us with its associated risk of getting stuck on the sandbar for eight or more hours.
The Vlasoff Cay, and our last opportunity to snorkel the reef before stinger season, was too tempting so out we went with just a metre of water under us at the bar. Phew!
We had a magnificent day.
There was a light 7 knot breeze so we put the head sail out and kept a motor going to make the three-hour crossing.
With school holidays and this run of great weather we expected see a lot of boats at the reef but there were only half a dozen others apart from the regular commercial cats heading to Green Island and Michaelmas Cay.
The previous day, Sunday, over 70 boat trailers were parked at the boat ramp adjacent the marina so we guessed it had been a bit busier at the reef then.
Vlasoff was just as beautiful as last week but, as we arrived just after low tide (0.8m) there was a lot more of the sand cay out of the water - and some tricky reef heads to negotiate into a sandy anchoring patch. As the water is so clear, it is almost impossible to determine how far under the water the reef patches are but we knew we had over a metre less water than our last visit so couldn't necessarily take the same route as before.
Once safely anchored we dropped the ladder and hit the water.
Beautiful! And we had four hours to lap it up.
Vlasoff Cay with a bit more sand and reef showing.
The camera did a rare change of hands to prove that I was there too.
If you're not sick of seeing reef photos, here's some more.
 We returned to the marina on the high tide last night. The rigger is due today (maybe) to check the rigging he installed two years ago.
Today and tomorrow we'll tidy the boat for our month away, eat all the food or give it away. When we return at the end of October, it will be stinger season and so I doubt we'll be snorkelling anywhere as we make our way south to Townsville where Sea Piper will spend the Wet season.


  1. Looks like paradise. IS PARADISE! Sigh. See you soon. GO HAWKS! YEAH!

  2. The photo's look amazing Janet, lucky we did come early and not October, I forgot about the stingers.
    xxleighxx aka "the balloonist"