sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Australia Cruising USA Cruising Canada Boats for Sale Sail-World Racing Photo Gallery FishingBoating
Video Gallery Newsletters
Sail-World.com : Inland waterways - an anchoring challenge Downunder
Inland waterways - an anchoring challenge Downunder

'Jumpinpin - great if you know how to anchor'    .

Grant Headifen, racing sailor and trainer, CEO of NauticEd online sail training school, here recounts a sailing adventure he had with Canadian long-range cruisers, Christine and Chris Ellsay and their four kids, Alexandra, Andrea, Ryan and Cari, on Stray Kitty. Together they were sailing the tricky inland waterways between Australia's holiday playground of the Gold Coast and Moreton Bay, the entrance to Brisbane.

Christmas dinner -  .. .  
Sailing with the Ellsay’s on Stray Kitty is a real insight to the lifestyle of world cruisers. They’ve certainly got it down and watching the kids in action with the lines and fenders was pretty impressive. This adventure was particularly interesting because of the intercoastal navigation issues in and around all the waterways.

One beautiful sunny afternoon we were anchored at a place called Jumpingpin. We went for a walk along the beach and came across a uniquely Australian experience by encountering a group of wallabies hoping across the sand.

After a nice stretch along the beach we returned to the boat just in time to beat an approaching thunderstorm. And in Aussie fashion, this one turned out to be a real beaut. About the time winds reached a peak of 40 knots we realized the washing was still on the lifelines and my bald head got a real pelting with the huge sideways rain drops as I brought in the now drenched washing. All the while that I was doing this, Chis, the skipper was pulling out fenders ready to fend off any of the at least ten yachts that were now dragging anchor.

waterways south of Brisbane -  .. .  
To make matters worse, the tidal range in the area is around five feet. This creates particularly strong tidal currents in the narrow waterways. As the thunderstorm pelted us, the tidal current had risen to about 5 knots and was flowing in the same direction as the wind.

This put huge forces on the anchors and it was pretty hair raising to see how fast the boats that had drug anchor were flying by. As an observation, almost all of the boats that had drug anchor and were now trying to reset them were using CQR plough type anchors.

Stray Kitty uses a Rocna roll type anchor and it held fast. Of course, in typical style of many boaters, the scope used was also way to low on boats that were dragging. And so we were able to watch the comedy of anchoring errors unfold in front of us. In reality there was no comedy. Some of the dragging boats were coming way too close, way too fast.

Jumpinpin anchoring - showed up the beginners -  .. .  
Next, one of the boats that re anchored abeam of us did it a bit too close and so as the current reversed later that night we began to come dangerously close. We elected to raise anchor and reset further out into the channel. However this presented quite a challenge with site selection. The wind was flowing in one direction whilst the current was in the other, and, we knew the current would again reverse before we awoke. Couple this with the difficulty in determining distance at night from other boats made us both glad of our previous anchoring experiences and knowledge. The worse scenario consequence of dragging anchor in the night and being washed out of the protected albeit high current waterway into the huge breakers coming in thought the cut was not one I wanted to spend to much time thinking about.

Another challenge was the markers. First off, Australia abides by IALA-A system which is opposite to the America’s IALA-B system of navigational marks. I.E. red right returning doesn’t work – it’s green on your right when returning. And in the USA the intercoastal water way fairly consistently uses green to seaward along the full length of a waterway with specially marked intercoastal day marks. IE heading from New Jersey past Florida and onto Texas you would keep green intercoastal daymarks on your left. In Queensland, they don’t seem do that and so the green and red swap inconsistently up and down the waterway.**

Red day marker -  .. .  
Sometimes the red and green swap sides, some times they don’t. They seemed to use the yellow special purpose marks to designate a channel intersection rather than a preferred channel marker with red over green or green over red that is used in the USA.

Twice we were caught out nearly heading onto a sand bar because the day mark swapped over. The Australian navigation system also uses cardinal marks. Being able to read these quickly kept us out of trouble when it came to isolated dangers.

On top of all that, sand bars move and so your highly relied upon GPS map showing the exact position of the day marks can’t be trusted. When sand bars move the local coast guard move the day marks to remark the proper deep channel. So you can be looking at your GPS telling you that the channel is in one place when the marks tell you some thing else. Which do you trust? You have to trust the day marks.

East cardinal mark -  .. .  
Twice we had to turn right angles to follow a day mark went the GPS was telling us that the depth was one foot. Of course a slow and easy pace combined with the depth sounder readings is essential. Still, when you have only two feet to play with below the keel, sometimes it’s not the greatest comfort.

We tried our best to time our sailings each day with the changing tidal current so that it would help our speed. On the day that we approached Surfers Paradise this was not the case however and our 7 knot though the water speed only gave us a three knot SOG (speed over ground) due to current. On one particular day we had to ensure that we crossed under powerlines at half tide or lower due to the height of Stray Kitty’s mast.

As hairy as I seem to have made the above sound, we definitely had a spectacular time visiting this area. It’s off the beaten track when it comes to top charter locations around the world and probably for good reason due to the complexity and also due to the spectacular and more popular Whitsundays area to the North.

There are two highly relevant NauticEd sailing courses to this article. The first is the NauticEd Anchoring a Sailboat Sailing Course. I’d venture to say that none of the power boats that drug anchor that day would have done so if they’d taken this course. First thing they’d have done was to leave the CQR in the garden at home and secondly they’d have understood scope a little better. Surely those people are embarrassed that they drug so badly.

Special purpose mark designating channel intersection -  .. .  
The second course that would really help someone enjoy our intercoastal venture as much as we did would be the Coastal Navigation Sailing Course. This course teaches in depth the navigation marks of both IALA-A and IALA-B systems including cardinal marks.

The other comfort to the whole trip was having very experienced world cruisers on board. After a hard day of tidal currents, thunderstorms, crazy reversing navigation day marks and shallow waters we were rewarded with gourmet type dinners under the southern sky. The crew of Stray Kitty, after living on their cat every day for the past four years, did not sacrifice food quality one bit and were even able to whip up a birthday cake for me on the 31st.

Other tasty delights on the menu were kangaroo, pork roast, shrimp pasta, steaks, roast turkey, gammon (cooked in the oven on board), plenty of salads and cookies. Some great Australian and new Zealand wines were poured on top of the above in the warm southern hemisphere summer over the Christmas and 2011/2012 new year.

NauticEd is a great online sailing school where you can gain all the theory of sailing without leaving your desk. To learn more go to the NauticEd website.

Editor's Note:
The starboard and port markers never 'swap sides' in Australian navigation channels. However, the channel may curve and curl and one has to 'curl and curve' with it. Looking at it from a distance, the markers may appear to 'swap sides', but it merely means you have to be more careful to follow them accurately. Green markers are to starboard entering a channel (therefore to port when exiting - however see reader's comment below about the confusion regarding this)



Sender: George Tate

Message: Hi,
With regard to this story, I have found that most do not put out enough scope on their anchor due to the normally calm waters that are between Southport and Moreton Bay. The other thing is that our marker system works on whether you are entering a port or leaving a port and this is when alot get confussed concerning the markers. There are many places when you are in, Inland waterways where there is a port at each end and the markers change midway. I got caught out myself when I first went boating after coming over fron NZ.

Regards

George


by Grant Headifen

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=92730

12:27 AM Tue 10 Jan 2012GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
Adventure Cruising

Related News Stories:

18 Apr 2012  When a sea lion comes to dinner...
19 Feb 2012  Can you beat this? 36 years spent long range cruising
24 Jan 2012  A sailing adventure: Late Night Visitor
03 Jan 2012  'By the Berth' sailing holidays - making life easy
01 Jan 2012  Sailing into Rangiroa Atoll, a breath-stopping entry
13 Dec 2011  An eBook for just $10: '101 Dollar Saving Tips for Sailors'
20 Nov 2011  A mammoth cruising voyage completed by Scotsman
22 Oct 2011  Sailing with Balvenie: Fascinating ancient Fés - Morocco
18 Sep 2011  Australian adventure sailors challenge the North West Passage
14 Sep 2011  Sailing with Balvenie: Spain's Atlantic coastline
MORE STORIES ...






Sail-World Cruising News - local and the World







The real ‘Supermoon’ story by Sail-world.com,




Sailor rescued after Facebook call for rescue by RNLI/Sail-World Cruising,












The Galley Guys' favourite shrimp recipe by Andy Adams and John Armstrong,










The final touch - which wax should I use on my boat? by Martin Flory/Sail-World Cruising,


ARC Baltic sets sail to discover Europe's 'east sea' by World Cruising Club/Sail-World,








Heart-stopping moment as whale capsizes Zodiac by Sail-World Cruising round-up,


If we stop killing parrotfish we can bring back Caribbean coral reefs by ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies,


Climate change could stop fish finding their friends by ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies,




















Tie This 'Lifesaving' Bowline in Seconds - the easy way!
A Beer Bummel on the Thames River
Online weather routing - possible? Predict Wind says yes
Why Boats Sink: Ten best tips on prevention
The North West Passage calls: Who will answer this year?
Polish adventure sailor in second try at North West Passage
Demystifying Croatian requests for taxation documents on yachts
Whale research - new techniques expand for non-lethal methods
Jessica Watson, solo sailing star, four years on...
Americas solo non-stop circumnavigator crosses Pacific for research
What is an El Niño and how will it affect my sailing? (Part 1)
The Dinghy Nav Light Solution- a brilliantly dumb idea
ARC Portugal concludes in Marina de Lagos
Spike in water temperatures evidence of ‘irreversible’ El Nino *Feature
Sailing crew's battle to save yacht lost in the Indian Ocean
Five Top Tips for selecting the best boatyard
RYA Onboard gets half a million youngsters on the water
Tips for selecting the best boatyard
Predictwind unlocks more features on free accounts
Composite Rigging launches new campaign for ECsix
When is a Captain not a Captain?   
RYA summary of Navitus Bay Wind Park views submitted   
Free app for managing your yacht   
Amazing MOB survival - 13 hours floating, rescued by fishermen   
Boater hit by lightning survives: 'It was the worst pain ever'   
Inauguration of the new Yacht Club Monaco - Images by Carlo Borlenghi   
Lessons for sailing clubs - how does YOURS rate?   
Turkey's new cruising black/gray water rules, skipper qualifications   
Giving up the luxuries of a life on land for Lizzy Belle   
Dehler 46, 'serious' cruising boat, debuts July   
SV Mystic to carry out OHPRI teen summer camps and voyages for adults   
Australian rescuers get bravery medal for rescuing Russian sailor   
Sailors and windfarms: Largest ever UK wind project approved   
Cooking at Sea? Which cook book should I buy?   
Fraudulent yacht broker gets jail for twelve months   
Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville joins Summer Sailstice   
The Grand Pavois - What's new as at June?   
Life jackets lead to fewer deaths - the campaign is working   
Boat buying scams and the Red Flags to watch for.   
Retired yachting star to sail again - for the love of her boat   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph, contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW CRU NH
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT