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Old 04-08-2015, 18:03   #16
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

Hi Rustic Charm. How was your trip? I'm with the Cruising Yacht Association of Victoria and should have helped you out. I have been distracted by writing a guide book "Cruising Victoria". It would have answered all your questions (including Western Port and 200 other spots) (i.e. it would complement the good advice you received).
But just in case someone is still interested:
- the Ocean Racing Club of Victoria puts out a good guide to the Rip (search on "ORCV")
- they suggest "Four Fingers West" which is on a bearing of about 50deg True (+/- 2 deg) to the "High Light" on Shortland Bluff. It does go close to the reef on the west shore. The pilots go even closer (further west) on the "small boat passage" but they don't have a keel and have plenty of power (the most westerly ship channel is about 46deg T
- the official tide tables give times for slack water which is about 3 hours after the high/low tide (as said above this approximately coincides with the tide at Williamstown)
- under sensible conditions the Rip is OK but don't even think of it on a full ebb tide (up to 6 kts) into any sea with a "S" in its direction
- El P. cautions to not use the eastern side, off Corsair Rock (any reasons??). In many ways it is preferable to the others as it is well out of the ship channels and you don't have to cross them, and it avoids the roughest water which can be 1 to 2 n.miles S of the heads. The leads (on Marcus Hill and Clarkes beacon) are hard to see but a GPS helps. Corsair Rock is more than 2.5m below at LW
- the chart copies shown above have been well superseded. There is a new green sector on Lonsdale Light and there are new high intensity directional lights at Shortland Bluff
- in the absence of ships there is 0.6 n.miles navigable width
- as an aside "Lonsdale VTS" (call them on VHF #16 and work on #12) can tell you ship movements but they are based in Melbourne and can only see via CCTV.

Cheers, Andrew
(President Cruising Yacht Association of Victoria and chair of "Cruising Victoria" editorial committee)
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Old 04-08-2015, 18:16   #17
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

Cheers Andrew. I havn't been yet. The intention is to take my son away, but he's been unwell. I'm hoping now to come over around the 23rd of this month, depending on the weather and whether my son is well enough to travel. I've put a question in here for you in bold.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew G View Post
Hi Rustic Charm. How was your trip? I'm with the Cruising Yacht Association of Victoria and should have helped you out. I have been distracted by writing a guide book "Cruising Victoria". It would have answered all your questions (including Western Port and 200 other spots) (i.e. it would complement the good advice you received).
But just in case someone is still interested:
- the Ocean Racing Club of Victoria puts out a good guide to the Rip (search on "ORCV")
- they suggest "Four Fingers West" which is on a bearing of about 50deg True (+/- 2 deg) to the "High Light" on Shortland Bluff. It does go close to the reef on the west shore. The pilots go even closer (further west) on the "small boat passage" but they don't have a keel and have plenty of power (the most westerly ship channel is about 46deg T
- the official tide tables give times for slack water which is about 3 hours after the high/low tide (as said above this approximately coincides with the tide at Williamstown)
- under sensible conditions the Rip is OK but don't even think of it on a full ebb tide (up to 6 kts) into any sea with a "S" in its direction that's good to know.
- El P. cautions to not use the eastern side, off Corsair Rock (any reasons??). In many ways it is preferable to the others as it is well out of the ship channels and you don't have to cross them, and it avoids the roughest water which can be 1 to 2 n.miles S of the heads. The leads (on Marcus Hill and Clarkes beacon) are hard to see but a GPS helps. Corsair Rock is more than 2.5m below at LW So are you saying this is a positive option?
- the chart copies shown above have been well superseded. There is a new green sector on Lonsdale Light and there are new high intensity directional lights at Shortland Bluff
- in the absence of ships there is 0.6 n.miles navigable width
- as an aside "Lonsdale VTS" (call them on VHF #16 and work on #12) can tell you ship movements but they are based in Melbourne and can only see via CCTV.

Cheers, Andrew
(President Cruising Yacht Association of Victoria and chair of "Cruising Victoria" editorial committee)
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Old 04-08-2015, 18:45   #18
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

Hi Rustic. The Rip is a classic wind-against-tide situation but it is even worse. To quote Cruising Victoria: "Thus 1,950 km2 of bay, with a 0.7 m tidal range, empties at up to 7 kn through a gap 0.6 nm wide and over a waterfall 90 m deep. At full flow the standing waves can be dangerous. With strong wind-against-tide, they can be extreme.
The Rip is classified as a bar and the precautions prescribed by law must be taken."

I have extreme photos but can't put them here because of licencing (we have agreement to use them in the guide).
The route via the eastern side is my personal preference (more than 10 times) but I am keen to know why El P. doesn't like it.
If you PM me I'll send you some extracts from Cruising Victoria for you to review (we are licenced to use official charts but I can't post them here).

Cheers, Andrew
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Old 04-08-2015, 20:47   #19
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

I got caught in standing waves of the rip years ago just by being 20 mins too early in my arrival. All disappeared and plain sailing 20 mins later😃




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Old 06-08-2015, 23:07   #20
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

El P would not recommend it to a first timer because far too much can go far too wrong far too quickly especially at night. There is a reason the pilot boats go inside Lonsdale rock.

One thing many don't realise is that the dirtiest water on the ebb isn't on the main leads, its off to the east where the water is heading off towards the Shanck. More than a few people have died there over the years.
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Old 06-08-2015, 23:15   #21
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

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El P would not recommend it to a first timer because far too much can go far too wrong far too quickly especially at night. There is a reason the pilot boats go inside Lonsdale rock.

One thing many don't realise is that the dirtiest water on the ebb isn't on the main leads, its off to the east where the water is heading off towards the Shanck. More than a few people have died there over the years.

What are you suggesting a novice (me) not do?
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Old 06-08-2015, 23:26   #22
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

I'm suggesting that as a novice you don't try and come in on the - oooops -quick edit - eastern side.

If you go down and look at the bottom left photo on page 3 you will see the Fort West beacon...http://www.orcv.org.au/index.php/doc...nmcguigan/file
That shows red over the nasty bits at Pt Lonsdale and has a very nice 2* white sector that leads inside Lonsdale Rock. Put there when they got rid of 'Wyuna' and started running the 'small' pilot boats through the heads in all weather and all states of the tide.

Major plus on entering on the west is that you can heave to in perfect safety a few miles offshore waiting for daylight or whatever .
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Old 10-08-2015, 02:53   #23
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

I trust all... or maybe 'any' ... interested in my last picked up the edit.... I am a little dislexic when it comes to east/west and port/starboard...bit of a worry...

Another small point... the ebb can be felt all the way down to the Shanck and if you are coming up from anywhere from Launceston to King Island to anywhere further west you would have to get 'across' the tide to come in on the Eastern side.

And also... you can sail over the top of Lonsdale Rock... so its not a biggy... just stay out of the red sector on the Fort West Iso light....
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Old 10-08-2015, 03:49   #24
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

We use these cameras to check the surf at the eastern point Corsair rock.
Port of melbourne website has themClick image for larger version

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Old 10-08-2015, 04:41   #25
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

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- as an aside "Lonsdale VTS" (call them on VHF #16 and work on #12) can tell you ship movements but they are based in Melbourne and can only see via CCTV.
Apologies to the OP for a minor distraction.....

Andrew, I heard rumours about the de-personing of Lonsdale - so it has now happened?

My take on the Rip after a dozen or so in/outs is that it's just like crossing a busy road: do it at the right time and you'll wonder what all the fuss is about. Do it at the wrong time: splammo!

It's not hard to avoid trouble if you stay over to the west at or close to slack water, unless it's blowing a gale. Of course ymmv etc.

Cheers, Graeme
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Old 15-08-2015, 02:16   #26
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

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I trust all... or maybe 'any' ... interested in my last picked up the edit.... I am a little dislexic when it comes to east/west and port/starboard...bit of a worry...

Another small point... the ebb can be felt all the way down to the Shanck and if you are coming up from anywhere from Launceston to King Island to anywhere further west you would have to get 'across' the tide to come in on the Eastern side.

And also... you can sail over the top of Lonsdale Rock... so its not a biggy... just stay out of the red sector on the Fort West Iso light....
Well, still too soon to know for sure, but I'm planning on coming over on the 24th, a week away. El Pinguino, just to be clear are you suggesting the eastern side? Because that's what I'm contemplating.
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Old 15-08-2015, 02:26   #27
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

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Well, still too soon to know for sure, but I'm planning on coming over on the 24th, a week away. El Pinguino, just to be clear are you suggesting the eastern side? Because that's what I'm contemplating.
Certainly not... go back and read all I have written so far.

Coming up from Launceston keep at least 3 miles offshore until across the main leads and the come in in the white sector of the Fort West beacon ...ie inside Lonsdale Rock... over Lonsdale rock or just outside Lonsdale Rock also OK.
As a first timer I would suggest a daylight entry, slack water at the end of the ebb or anytime on the flood.

Do not find your self closer than 3 miles and east of the leads on the ebb unless you have a death wish.

Don't bother thinking about the eastern side until you have some runs on the board. I've only every come in on the east once... couldn't see any benefit... haven't bothered since. Coming from Western Port bound Portsea it may have some merit.
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Old 15-08-2015, 02:28   #28
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

From my #22 'I'm suggesting that as a novice you don't try and come in on the .......eastern side.'
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Old 15-08-2015, 02:38   #29
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

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Certainly not... go back and read all I have written so far.

Coming up from Launceston keep at least 3 miles offshore until across the main leads and the come in in the white sector of the Fort West beacon ...ie inside Lonsdale Rock... over Lonsdale rock or just outside Lonsdale Rock also OK.
As a first timer I would suggest a daylight entry, slack water at the end of the ebb or anytime on the flood.

Do not find your self closer than 3 miles and east of the leads on the ebb unless you have a death wish.

Don't bother thinking about the eastern side until you have some runs on the board. I've only every come in on the east once... couldn't see any benefit... haven't bothered since. Coming from Western Port bound Portsea it may have some merit.
Ok, I've got you. On the Fishermans Way or Four Fingers. I thought that's what you were suggesting until your post referring to the eastern side and coming up from Launceston.
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Old 15-08-2015, 02:48   #30
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Re: Sailing The Rip into Port Philip Victoria

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Ok, I've got you. On the Fishermans Way or Four Fingers. I thought that's what you were suggesting until your post referring to the eastern side and coming up from Launceston.
That sectored ISO on the Fort West Beacon is hard to pick up both on the paper and electronic charts but is brilliant in both ways.

Means that you can enter ( using the Mk1 eyeball) in the dark at almost any state of the tide in almost any weather.

When the weather is too bad to enter that way you shouldn't be out there anyway
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