Thursday, July 12, 2012
Airlie Beach - Still at anchor
Not much to report on today other than the weather is lousy it has been very windy and raining all night and day. We just stayed inside and played on the computers with photo and sorting out files .
(This photo is of the moon rising directly above the lit up mast of that luxury sailing vessel I posted the other day)
Last night we were blasted with winds of 35 plus knots. The winds swung the boat around violently but we had little waves being just outside the marina wall with the wind direction coming from that direction with the ESE winds. However, it was a restless night with the first gusts around midnight then it settled to a steady 20 knots for two hours before kicking into the 30 plus knots again and this repeated itself four times through the night. Each time the wind increased I got up to check all was good. I have a feeling our Rocna anchor is going to be buried very deep in this sand/mud seabed and will take some driving out and cleaning when we leave tomorrow weather permitting.
It is 0800 hours at the moment and we have winds in the 20 - 25 knots from the ESE.
Nancy went by herself to do the shopping as I did not want to leave the boat for too long in the current conditions, I continuously kept my eye on the weather there was supposed to be a lull around midday and if all was well we might make a move over to the islands so that we will be closer to Hamilton Island Marina.
After Nancy had returned with the shopping and unpacked everything we had lunch, the weather had not changed other than we had some sun shining through. After lunch I went into Airlie to pick up the essentials, beer and wine. As I was returning the wind steadied so as soon as I returned on board we got ready to weigh anchor. I did not bother to open the mainsail bag as we would be having the wind on the nose all the way and knew it would be an iron sail job, it wasn't going to hurt giving the engines a run it would charge the batteries for the night and give us plenty of hot water.
We weighed anchor and headed off we weren't sure what the Whitsunday Passage was going to be like it is possible it could be stirred up from the heavy winds, my thoughts were that now we have a wind change to an easterly there would be little wind waves as the Molle Islands and the Whitsunday Island would offer protection across both passages, as it turned out that is the way it was, we also had the advantage of crossing the Whitsunday Passage at still tide so there was no wind/tide effect. As the conditions were good we decided to anchor off Beach 25 just north of Hamilton Island on the southern end of Whitsunday Island, we arrived at last light in very calm conditions with light rain starting again.
(Chart showing our track from Airlie to Beach 25, southern end of Whitsunday Island)
(Beach 25 anchorage near Gulnare Inlet in the Fitzalan Passage)
We had good hot showers before dinner and red wine and had a quiet night watching a movie.