Thursday, November 25, 2010

Bats at dusk!

Every night at dusk, thousands of flying fox fruit bats pass over us on their way to feed in the orchards downriver!  They are as large as pigeons!

Toketie in Bundaberg!

Toketie attached fore n aft in the river in Bundy! 

Midtown Marina

The fishboats tie up to the funky old docks at Midtown Marina in Bundaberg!  When the tide is really low, the little dinghy landing dock at the marina is in the mud so we tie up to the floating fuel tanks and scramble over the fuel dock.  The prawns, scallops and fish don't get any fresher than they are coming right off the boats....we especially like the large banana prawns!!

dinghy landing

This little dock was put in by the town for people living on the river to land their dinghies!  It has a beautiful walkway all lit up at night going up to the street!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Arrived Aus!

After a bumpy but good passage, Toketie motored into Hervey Bay and up the river to Bundaberg Port Marina in the wee hours, arriving at sunrise with time to shower and swab the decks before clearing customs, immigration and quarantine. The yellow duster has been folded away once again and we are officially in the land of the Joey! Tomorrow the plan is to motor the 7 miles up the river to midtown and check out the city of Bundaberg which will be our home for the next while!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Nearing Aus!

Been a long night with strong currents against us. Motorsailing now with 29nm to the channel. Hope to clear into Bundaberg in the morning!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Day 6

Idyllic tradewind sailing continued today with a steady 15 knot breeze from the East. About 170nm to Bundaberg! The sun is shining and all is well on board Toketie.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Day 5

Beautiful sunshine with large swells from NE and SE making for lumpy confused seas. Light steady breeze directly off stern. Not going as fast as we like but making decent time.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Tradewind sailing!

Quite a relief after the first couple of days where we saw some of the biggest seas we have experienced. Veritable mountains of water following us(fortunately) with tops curling over like a herd of wild horses as they rushed past us. In the night, the motion of slewing down the face or taking one over the side, along with the phosphorescence, told you what you were in! But last night and today, the wind has calmed down to 15 knots or so and the seas are much smoother. This is the fourth day of the passage and we hope to make landfall in Bundaberg by Tuesday, only 380 nautical miles away!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Lest We Forget

It is not hard to find a moment of silence on the sea. The sound of the water rushing by the hull. The wind in the rigging. It is 2AM, a day ahead downunder, and it is pitch black on my watch with a few lonely stars peering around the clouds. No, there are many moments of silence at sea. And much time to remember!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

rocking n rollin!

Toketie shot out Dumbea Pass through the main reef from New Caledonia doing 7.8 knots! Not that we wanted to but the wind was blowing and we could not shorten sail at the time. Since then, its been a sleigh ride! Our windomometer quit on us but maybe just as well...huge mountains of water cascading down behind us and slewing Toketie as we surf down their faces. We made good 150 nm the first 24 hours meaning we averaged over 6 knots. Not bad under trysail and half a jib! It has been a tiring day and night though and we are still being tossed around in big seas but the big gusts have lost their punch and we have settled down to a more comfortable 5+ knots. Lots of clouds around and a few drops of rain but nothing too serious yet. About 600 miles to go to Bundagerg!

Saturday, November 06, 2010

on to Australia?

Looking good for a weather window this week! Hopefully Tuesday we
will lift the hook and head West to the land of kangaroos! Still
strong winds in the forecast but they are all behind us and looks like
the troughs and fronts might settle down for a week to let us
pass...never enjoy the squalls, lightning and heavy rains! It is
about 800nm from where we are (Noumea) to where we are going
(Bundaberg) so we hope to do it in a week. I will try to update along
the way if I can!