Friday, July 8, 2011

Sailing North: Yippee Yeppoon

The daybreak came about an hour and a half after we set off. It was blowing WNW and although the weather was beautifully clear it was cold. Besides thermals, coats, beanies, etc we wrapped ourselves in blankets and doonas and let the boat systems drive the boat towards Yeppoon.
Lunch was a beautiful lamb shank stew, (thank you Sarah) snacks and endless cups of tea and coffee saw us through until sundown.
Unfortunately we couldn't sail much today. The wind would come around sufficiently to let us use the jib, then run shy so that we had to put it away again. In and out like a fiddlers elbow until we were tired and agreed no more jib regardless of what the wind did. We motored on sailess, and the wind, having made that deal with us then sat at exactly 36 degrees apparent from our bow, perfect close reach sailing weather.
Another beautiful sunset gave way to a pitch black moonless night. We had some tricky navigating to do around Cape Capricorn with Ship Rock and Hummocky Island to negotiate but the Oracle did her job and they loomed past as even darker shapes in a very dark night.
Rona and I are quite good at these overnighters. Different crews have different methods of keeping watch but we find that a more relaxed attitude towards watch keeping works for us. If you are tired, go to sleep, if you are not, keep watch. By some miracle we slept through most of the danger and at about 4.00am the alarm went off to let us know we were near Yeppoon. Only joking!!!
Actually at about 3.00am we slowed Dreamagic's progress so that we would arrive at about 5.00am. Although I have been into Yeppoon several times and it is well lit, we understood the marina to be full and we although we knew our berth allocation, we didn't know where it was. We motored outside the Marina for about 30 minutes and watched the now very familiar sunrise, congratulated ourselves for making it to the tropics with a glass of port each and went and introduced Dreamagic to Green 72, her home for the next week.
We were so tired that we couldn't sleep. We tidied the boat, read a little, had showers and coffees and wandered aimlessly until about 9.00 when we could finally sleep all day and recover.
In the evening it had to be The capricorn Yacht Club which is without doubt the best club on the east coast of Australia. We took our own steaks to the BBQ, (Free, and they supply the bread and onion) drank their rum and cokes ($4) and wine ($12). We spent the evening chatting with Brendon the Assistant Duty Manager who has 16 children and grandchildren.Every member that came in introduced themselves to us and we promised to come back again before we leave.

And that's it. Dreamagic stays hear now until next Friday when the adventure continues. Thanks to those who read our travels, thanks especially to those who have written with meessages. See you next week!

Capt'n Willi Cinque

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