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Old 24-04-2014, 17:36   #1
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1st time in the Pacific

Took my 17 ft fractional rigged sloop out of Newcastle NSW ,only went to the ship wreck of the Signa and back , not far . just a little taste. wind was a constant 15 knots wnw , 6 ft waves , it was great . on returning to harbor gave way to the massive coal ship in the channel , sailed into wind on an out going tide with the wind dying down. the wind and current working on my boat ,she stopped in the harbour ,than slowly started to move towards the boat ramp before sunset. I was happy I did not use my engine, when derigging , I found I had a passenger , a large green tree frog was hiding in my anchor well . he did not look any worse for wear so all was good.
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Old 24-04-2014, 17:52   #2
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

Lovely story. Glad you all had a good time. It may not take much to make the frog happy--I think absence of egrets would do that! You picked excellent conditions for it, too. Good on ya.

Ann
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Old 24-04-2014, 18:08   #3
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

How cool is that! Sounds like an awesome little cruise.
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Old 24-04-2014, 18:24   #4
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pirate Re: 1st time in the Pacific

Good one
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Old 24-04-2014, 18:24   #5
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

I wanted to keep going , maybe next time ill provision for 5 days . go all the way to port stephens , or maybe even Broughton island . Now that would be cool.
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Old 24-04-2014, 19:49   #6
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

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Originally Posted by HVYJimmy View Post
I wanted to keep going , maybe next time ill provision for 5 days . go all the way to port stephens , or maybe even Broughton island . Now that would be cool.
With a decent wx break, that should be do-able. But, if you are on a schedule, be prepared to leave your boat at Pt. S if the wx packs it in unexpectedly. Beating back across Stockton Bight in a SW blow would not be a good prospect in your boat! There are several very good anchorages in Pt S, as you likely know already, as well as marina facilities should you need to do some provisioning.

Broughton Is is also good, but without the bailout option. Don't know how much anchoring experience you have, but in shifting conditions you may have to move from one anchorage to another there, and that can be tricky at night.

Anyhow, glad that you had a good experience, and good luck with the next one!

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 25-04-2014, 16:43   #7
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

cheer jim , thanks for the advice , my though is to stay in port Stephens until good weather forecast .A. north to broughton island ,or. B south back to Newcastle. while in port Stephens I can experiment with the anchor to see how much movement , drag , wind shift has on the anchor and boat . I am new to sailing ,how ever I have been reading a lot about it and am now at the stage for putting it into practice. to see what work for me and my little boat , so far so good
thanks

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Old 26-04-2014, 12:17   #8
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

Nice story. You made me look up the MV Sygna. Interesting wreck.


Onno

MV Sygna - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 26-04-2014, 17:10   #9
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

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cheer jim , thanks for the advice , my though is to stay in port Stephens until good weather forecast .A. north to broughton island ,or. B south back to Newcastle. while in port Stephens I can experiment with the anchor to see how much movement , drag , wind shift has on the anchor and boat . I am new to sailing ,how ever I have been reading a lot about it and am now at the stage for putting it into practice. to see what work for me and my little boat , so far so good
thanks

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AhHa!

Am I correct in thinking (now) that you intend to trailer the boat to Pt S rather than sail from Newcastle? Honestly, that is a better idea IMO. I'm not familiar with your mini-boat design and really have no idea about its seaworthiness... my previous thoughts about sailing it up may have been ill advised. There are smaller yachts that are seaworthy enough to attempt that voyage with reasonable chances of success, equally there are some that don't meet that standard.

But trailering it up, and then gunkholing around will be very rewarding. There are big areas of Pt S that you can reach with your shallow draft that are denied to us with deeper keels. One such is the creek that feeds into Fame Cove. It is lovely, lots of birds and other wildlife, and would offer you VERY good protection in all wind directions. We can only access it by dinghy.

And with a stable forecast, the trip out to Broughton would be feasible... sail out, spend the night in whichever anchorage is best for the conditions, and sail back the next day. It's only something like ten miles from the heads... easy peasy!

So, keep up the efforts, and good luck and good sailing.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 29-04-2014, 17:20   #10
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

I am told my boats designed to handle heavy weather, how ever I would rather keep her out of it . but I was thinking to sail her from Newcastle to port Stephen , stay there as long as necessary explore the large area of water there, reprovision as needed than as weather permits , sail her to broughton Is , stay over night at Esmeralda cove with at least 5 days supply's, than return to Port Stephens than Newcastle as weather permits . as I am recently retired this trip can take as long as Mother Nature wishers .if I have forgotten some thing or there's some advise , please feel free to make comment . thank all

jimmy
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Old 29-04-2014, 18:43   #11
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

G'Day Jimmy,

Perhaps you could post some more info on your boat. I'm always suspicious of "I'm told it's designed for heavy weather" sorts of data, and in this case misinformation could cost you your life. Stockton Bight can get very rough at times, even without storm conditions.

Secondly, if you do get to Broughton, be very wary of Esmeralda cove. It becomes quite untenable if the wind shifts southerly, and it is hard to beat your way out of in those conditions, especially in a small and not too powerful a boat such as yours. Coalshafts and the northern anchorages are better in most conditions, but they have numerous hazards in their areas, ones that are hard to spot in the dark. It's a tricky place for a novice in many ways, but quite ok in benign conditions.

Your thoughts on exploring Pt S are right in line with my previous suggestions. It will keep you amused for a longish time!

Good luck,

Jim
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Old 29-04-2014, 18:47   #12
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

Hi, Jimmy,

Esmeralda Cove is good in NE, N, & NW winds. Then comes the southerly change, which you probably wouldn't like too much for going back to Newcastle, but could be done --possibly--to get you back inside Pt. Stephens. Excellent Sly protection in Salamander Bay, not as rolly as the southern beach inside the heads. Also, can go around to the N side of Broughton, the NW corner isn't bad, good sand holding. Inside Pt. Stephens, you can tie up at the public dock, also at D'Albora's Marina for long enough to do more shopping.

Perhaps your draft will allow you to go up to the Myall Lakes as well.

However, Jim picked up on a possible issue that I missed, and that is that in a small trailer sailer, with an o/b motor, you might be in real danger trying to get out of Esmeralda to go anywhere at all if you stay in there for a southerly change. Our strategy is to go anchor when it's uncomfortable on the north side to avoid having to move there at night for protection from the southerly change.

But really,"sturdy and ocean capable" are not qualities of many trailer sailers. You should be prepared to get trapped in Port Stephens if you sail it there, and will have to decide what kind of shore facilities you'll need when thus trapped. I do hope you're bringing the boat up there by trailer. That's a big trip for a small, slow boat, and most trailer sailers, even if sturdy for their type, are not up to beating into 15+ from Newcastle to Pt. Stephens. In bouncy seas, on the wind, the o/b prop can bounce right out of the water...time after time after time, and it would take a LOT OF HORSEPOWER to punch through the waves, if you could deliver the hp to the water. Most trailer sailers have small o/bs. Please do not let those of us with larger boats convince you this is a safe thing for you. It could be, but it could also work out very badly indeed.

Another factor for you to consider is the weather forecasts, as they forecast average wind strength. Averages are made from wind strengths less, but also more importantly more than the number you hear on the radio. So, if you have a 10-15 predicition, you would not be very surprised if you had a 20 k puff. ["Wind strengths may be up to 40% of the averages given here."]That 20 k puff may be too much for your boat. Can you reef it without falling off the boat? Can you reef the main at all? Have you figured out how to cope if you have to take it down?


These are some of my concerns. End of reality check.

Ann
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Old 29-04-2014, 18:57   #13
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

Any closer on the repairs Miss Ann?
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Old 29-04-2014, 21:04   #14
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

thanks Jim and Ann for the reality check .
I really do err on the side of caution . in this little girl I only wish to have fair weather sailing , and a back up plan if things are not looking good . I have taken her out in lake Macquarie in 20 knots , reefed mainsail , semi furled genoa . she behaved well , the wind waves are smaller in the lake, but very close together . Yesterday I took her out off Newcastle again , forecasted weather was 10 knots up to 15 knots , waves 6 ft with 11 second intervals . that sounded great to me , set out at 9:30 with 9 knots of wind , the seas were as forecast , however the winds dyed away { I see what you mean as far as forecasts go } so it was a slow but interesting return trying to milk the light winds for all they were worth, but I still made it back to Newcastle Harbour with out the engine , so happy about that .
I would only sail her to Port Stephens from Newcastle in perfect conditions , both forecasted and real

Cheers

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Old 29-04-2014, 22:45   #15
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Re: 1st time in the Pacific

You missed the best part!! Kissing the green frog she might have turned into a Princess!!
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