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Old 14-12-2014, 01:12   #16
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

This is a good warning for how things can change and to be prepared. Thanks!
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Old 14-12-2014, 06:34   #17
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

Looks like a beneteau 473.

Thanks for the story. You were brave going out there and prudent coming back in.

My handheld GPS is great in the dink, tiny little screen but good enough. Good investment.
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Old 14-12-2014, 10:24   #18
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Thumbs up Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

My reply yesterday didnt get posted, repeat: Your "real time" report was great. As I read your story, I pictured a couple of those harbor entrances on the Aus coast and really appreciated what you were describing. 'Much to be considerd and learned from your account. The only thing I could think of that would have provided some type of guidance for you in the dinghy to safely get back would be a handheld gps showing your tracks to 'retrace' to get back safely.

It is heart-warming and reassuring once again to hear how cruisers will make such an effort to assist a fellow cruiser. Thank you and thank you for sharing this story.
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Old 14-12-2014, 14:17   #19
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

Yes, a handheld GPS would have made finding our way back easier, and we have one, which I should have thought to take, but didn't.


But to get out there that night we really needed some kind of chartplotter.

It's all a learning curve. I've been "gonna get around to" buying a new hand-held VHF for a while, our old one wasn't fully waterproof, and now we found out it's buggered. We'll be looking into more portable electronic charting methods too I guess.


I've also "been gonna" fit a depth sounder to the dinghy for ages.... that would have been useful too.


Christmas soon....
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Old 14-12-2014, 14:30   #20
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

Navionics on a iPhone in a lifeproof case? I can attest to the Lifeproof case, I left the phone on the back of the ute the other day, reversed out of the garage, drove off came back half an hour later, had to ring the phone to find it, sitting in the middle of the road in pouring rain since I left home. And I cant imagine that it didnt get driven over.

Interesting that your plotter of Pancake is accurate, mine has me parked on Bustard head next to the lighthouse. Only spot that I have found inaccuracy in the chart system.

What this does illustrate is the safety benefits of a boat that can cover the ground quickly. You had options, which the other boat didn't have.
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Old 15-12-2014, 00:09   #21
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

Wmm, without wanting to be critical, they did have the option of NOT entering under those conditions, and in the dark. There are normally lit leads to get you into the outer anchorage at Pancake. If one of those lights was extinguished, and radar was not available (or the skill to use it in anger) simply manning up and staying at sea would have been a safe, if likely uncomfortable, option.

And for what it is worth, we've used the outer anchorage exclusively for some years now, just because of the problems of entering/leaving the inner anchorage.

Jim
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Old 15-12-2014, 00:24   #22
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

If you hadn't been to Rodds Harbour before then the 8 hours to Gladstone is an easy trip.

Sent from my GT-N7105T using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
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Old 15-12-2014, 02:53   #23
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

I have no intention of trying to second guess what went wrong for those poor buggers and I feel bad for them.
However when we were there just weeks ago one of the leed lights was not only not lit but not there.Having said that I could see how following those leads could actually put you on the rocks and while it may be an admission of poor seamanship on my part I can find lights to be confusing at times.
My navionics on I pad and Iphone shows the way into Pancake Creek and if followed will give no problems as it does for Wide Bay bar and every other entry on the coast.Clearly you still need to be aware of your draft and tide.
Chris
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Old 15-12-2014, 05:40   #24
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Wmm, without wanting to be critical, they did have the option of NOT entering under those conditions, and in the dark. There are normally lit leads to get you into the outer anchorage at Pancake. If one of those lights was extinguished, and radar was not available (or the skill to use it in anger) simply manning up and staying at sea would have been a safe, if likely uncomfortable, option.

And for what it is worth, we've used the outer anchorage exclusively for some years now, just because of the problems of entering/leaving the inner anchorage.

Jim
I doubt the outer anchorage would be tenable in a northerly Jim, but yes, they did have options. As I said, we were even looking at what our options would be, and sailing on to Bundy was one of them. There's no problem entering Bundy in the dark, and it would need seriously bad weather, which we didn't have, to be a problem.

On a dissapointing note, I met some people who'd come down from Pancake creek today, and they said the boat is breaking up, deck is coming off. Showed me a photo too, very sad.

I'd hoped she might be repairable.
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Old 15-12-2014, 07:24   #25
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

A great story, thanks for posting that !!

Spare handheld VHF and handheld plotting GPS are good things to have for the dink.

You took a hell of a risk going out there in a dinghy -- kudos to you.
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Old 15-12-2014, 09:55   #26
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

More importantly, when things get bad at night... heave to.

Sad for those people.
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Old 15-12-2014, 15:12   #27
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

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A great story, thanks for posting that !!

Spare handheld VHF and handheld plotting GPS are good things to have for the dink.

You took a hell of a risk going out there in a dinghy -- kudos to you.
Thanks, but I think we took an acceptable risk, not a large one. Where we were anchored conditions were fine, if a little windy, rainy etc. We were able to see the deteriorating conditions as we moved further towards the entrance, and make a decision about whether or not to keep going based on them.

Really our biggest problem was the dark, and the fact that our torch couldn't penetrate the rain and mist. It was becoming impossible to work out where we were, and the worry was that if we strayed into the shallows, we'd be in big breaking waves.

That, and the fact that we still saw no sign of the crew of the other boat, was what made us decide to turn back.

Really glad there was a VMR rescue boat coming too. If we'd been somewhere VMR couldn't get to, I'm not sure what would have happened.
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Old 15-12-2014, 15:26   #28
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

[QUOTE=Ann T. Cate;1698993]Never had a plotter in a dinghy. But, don't know if I'd have gone out of the inner anchorage at Pancake Creek (it's a somewhat convoluted route, and at 2.2 m. draft, our big boat would be depth challenged; and we discovered, even the dinghy can be depth challenged in there due to sand banks) to try to render assistance to people after dark and in a thunderstorm.

Anne, neither have I but you see many with fishermen thesedays and the cost has come down significantly. Can easily be removed from dingy and would be a backup for the main vessel. if you did a lot of fishing from your dingy it would be an option.

cheers

Sad case, with the loss of an obviously well setup vessel. Sometimes hanging at sea is the right decision.
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Old 15-12-2014, 20:30   #29
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

downunder,

As you say, hanging at sea is always an option. The vessel that got on the rocks did have a difficult decision, due to limited visibility. They could have gone east, away from Pancake Ck. and safely, too, if they had a working chartplotter. In heavy thunderstorms, your radar is blind, in the same way that cruising44's crew were blind when the raindrops only reflected the torch light back in their eyes. Had they gone east, and hove to, or headed for the Burnett R. --the story would have had a less sad ending.

I didn't mean to chide cruising 44 with what I wrote about carefully assessing the situation first. I should have written more clearly, because they did exactly what one wants to do when someone is in danger. I also applaud the decision to return to the , given the circumstances.

What I was on about is more that we should avoid the knee-jerk rescue response, and try and think calmly about how it could best be done...including if it should be done. In many cases one would make the effort, because of the risk of people being in the water losing their lives, AND one should also be ready to bail if it isn't working out. Cruising44 gets a big gold star.

It is because I think we should get clear in our own mind when we would not go, when we would not put at risk ourselves and add to the problems of any potential rescuers.
Some people's dinghies would not be safe in a strong thunderstorm and 2 m. seas. They
would have to cut themselves some slack, to not go, to fight against that urge to help.
So, if your dinghy is really small, or only has a 2 hp o/b, be aware of what you cannot do, as well as what you can.

Ann
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Old 15-12-2014, 21:31   #30
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Re: How Much a Day Can Change.

Anne,

I agree entirely with your sentiments. Need to know and respect your own and your vessels limitations.

Having a good safe, stable capable dingy such as yours with good workable power can offer much more than the small,just adequate.
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