Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for June, 2016

Greetings Everyone,

I always say that dramas make the best e-mails. They are also best looking back on rather than being in the middle of.

We decided not to go through the Hydrographers Passage because it was king tides which the Australian Pilot Book proclaims can run up to six knots sideways and the winds were fickle from variable to 25 to 30 knots, We chickened out and decided to head for Flinders Passage just north of Bowen. It’s an unlit passage but we have been through it before.

After all the delays and fickle winds we were running short of interesting food and lower on fuel than we liked and so headed up the Whitsunday Passage Friday night to go to Airlie Beach markets Saturday morning. We had a good sail under jib only with strong winds behind us but fairly smooth seas UNTIL we came to turn at North Molle Island to head for Airlie.

“Pull the jib in a bit before we turn”, I said to Phil (the wind was 27 knots). Nothing happened. “Pull harder”. Nothing. The roller furler had a riding turn inside the drum (which is almost fully enclosed) and nothing was going to happen. We FLEW across the channel sideways to the swells almost dipping the sail and spray flying everywhere. Phil, dripping wet was trying to loosen the turn with no luck. Finally we came behind the lee of the land and found a wind shadow. I held the boat there with the motor and the intrepid skipper loosened the riding turn and downed the sail. Phew!! I had visions of us ploughing right through Airlie Beach or going eternally around the bay in circles until the wind dropped.

Now, stocked up with lovely fresh fruit and veges we are anchored behind Cape Upstart and planning to finally leave Monday night for PNG.

Please pray for no more dramas in the high seas.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Greetings Everyone,

Again we are holed up waiting for the weather — this time in Pearl Bay, a small bay forty miles or so north of Great Keppel Island. The wind is gusting 25+ knots coming all the way from the north east to the south west. We are swinging crazily around our anchor but we watched another poor yacht drag almost into the rocks. He didn’t answer his radio and Phil got out an old bugle and blew it and the skipper finally popped his head up just in time.

We cleared customs in Bundaberg and the plan is to sail to Scawfell Island tomorrow (weather permitting) and head out through Hydrographers Passage on Wednesday. But it all depends on the WEATHER. It has been a very strange weather year. Please pray for the right conditions for us and the wisdom to know when they are right,

We are loaded up as usual with a couple of hundred Bibles, 500 special designed MP3 players for the SIL Bible translators in Misima, stacks of clothing including six bags of school uniforms, three large boxes of school library book, and two large boxes of medicines, three HF radios and antennas (in case the cyclone damaged any that we had put in), a couple of guitars and sundry other things. As usual the waterline has risen!!

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Read Full Post »

Greetings Everyone,

In case your are concerned for us sailing through these catastrophic weather patterns — on the worst day we were holed up behind a mangrove island (Turkey Island) in the Great Sandy Straits. While Bundaberg got one of its strongest winds ever and it blew like crazy on the other side of Fraser Island, we watched a lovely sunset painting the sky gorgeous colours with a clear reflection in the still water (wind speed 5 knots) except where an occasional turtle chose to raise its head.

We left Iluka with a 15 knott westerly on Tuesday 31st and decided to keep going past Southport to Wide Bay Bar before the weather broke. The wind turned fickle, gusting to 20 knotts then dying to next to nothing and going around the clock so that we spent day and night doing sail changes. We reached Wide Bay bar an hour before dark just before hight tide (perfect time to cross it). The next day we went through the Sandy Straits and tucked in behind the mangrove for the forecast bad weather.

The weather was so lovely we found it hard to believe the forecast of gale force winds. We waited a day there and then continued through the Straits to Big Woody Island where we started getting strong wind on the nose so decided to anchor behind that island for the night. Not a nice night as it rolled a lot. Yesterday afternoon the wind and swell dropped and we left Big Woody and motor-sailed (wind very fine on) straight to Bundaberg and anchored here at 3.40am this morning.

Thankyou for your prayers for us. We do feel we were protected with so much devastation around us. Also, Phil received a good report from his operation — no problems at all.

We have some things to do in Bundaberg and hope to clear customs by the 16th June.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

Read Full Post »