by Dani Limback
A Sydney couple have packed up their lives, sold off their material possessions and started the trip of a lifetime in their Chaparral 310 Sports Cruiser.
Daren and Susan Whiteman purchased the Chaparral 310 at the Sydney Boat Show in 2011 as newcomers to big boat ownership and have spent some time learning and familiarising themselves with their boat and the conditions they are likely to face on their trip dubbed 'our big break'.
They have trucked the Chaparral up to Cairns and plan to travel South visiting Islands and exploring the hundreds of townships, coves and hidden anchorages along the way.
The 9.5 metre Chaparral is running twin Mercruiser 5.0L V8 motors and has fuel capacity of 473 litres, so trip planning will be critical between re-fuelling stops. The efficient Chaparral hull will have a range of about 220nm at 25 knots and the Whitemans will be relying on their Garmin GPS unit to help them with their calculations.
Darren says that it has been a challenge in preparing for the trip; 'Over the past few months we've sold or thrown out just about everything. We've sold our house (well, a two-bedroom unit), all our furniture and our car. Our lives now consist of about 15 boxes full of stuff, our boat and all the things on the boat, we are sure we've got too much on board,' he says.
'We will be writing a blog and publishing pictures of our journey along the way'; says Darren, 'We'll update this and keep in touch when we can, we are not sure where and when we'll have internet access. There are some spots on the QLD coast where there seems to be nothing for hundreds of kilometers.'
Scott O’Hare from Chaparral Australia says: 'We are jealous! What a great thing to be able to do and what a great boat to do it on! The Chaparral cruisers are built for saltwater work and we love to see our owners making the most of their boats.'
Follow Darren and Susan’s adventure at www.ourbigbreak.blogspot.com.au
For more information on Chaparral cruisers go to www.chaparralaustralia.com.au or contact Chaparral Australia on (03) 9397 6977.