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Old 27-01-2019, 18:11   #1
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Cyclone / Typhoon shelters Qld & Philippines

Hello All,
I am planning to sail from New zealand to Australia later this year 2019
I probably will cruise Queensland for one year.
Than sail north from Townsville via PNG to Philippines and cruise there for a year or so.
I prefer not to stay in any marinas.
My question: Can anyone recommend any cyclone and typhoon shelters in both countries? (A Long and Lat would be very much appreciated)
Many thanks
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Old 27-01-2019, 18:31   #2
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Re: Cyclone / Typhoon shelters Qld & Philippines

On the East coast of Australia north of Townsville, I've used a few cyclone shelters. Of course none of them would be much good in a direct strike of a slow-moving super-cyclone (Category 5 or more).

Of them, I think most highly of Trinity Inlet next to the city of Cairns (somewhere close to 16.9S 145.8E).

Trinity Inlet has a goodly number of small and narrow creeks the banks of which are well forested by mangroves. The creeks do not have a large watershed, meaning that not a lot of rainwater runoff flows into the creeks. The entrance from seaward to Trinity Inlet is relatively long, acting to buffer somewhat against sudden storm surge.

The particular geography around Cairns is anecdotally reported to minimise direct strikes (but of course you'll also hear people claiming that this planet is cooling and the number of tropical storms is declining, regardless of other interpretations of the mix of patterns and chaos that is weather and climate).

The port authority (Ports North) governing Cairns harbour has a clear cyclone contingency plan that is well communicated.

See (with good fortune): https://s3-ap-southeast-2.amazonaws....an_2017-18.pdf
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Old 28-01-2019, 13:42   #3
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Re: Cyclone / Typhoon shelters Qld & Philippines

Thanks Alan Mighty, The mangrove area past Trinity inlet is a pretty good option, there are quite few 'holes' 3m+ deep at low tide.
Just wondering if the Cairns Port Auth also allocates places, depending on draught / size, or is it left the individual boats ?
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Old 28-01-2019, 17:38   #4
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Re: Cyclone / Typhoon shelters Qld & Philippines

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Just wondering if the Cairns Port Auth also allocates places, depending on draught / size, or is it left the individual boats ?
A few places are reserved, but I suspect more by customary practice than by regulation.

Once the Port authority closes the port and orders evacuation, the principle is to check the tide tables and move your vessel as soon as possible. Early birds get the best worms, so to speak.

The "reserved" anchorages with which I'm familiar are those occupied, when a cyclone evacuation is declared, by the vessels of the Australian Volunteer Coastguard and the pilot vessels operated by Torres Straits Pilots.

But that's because I follow the evacuation plan and always go to the same locations. And the principle I follow is to head as far up the creek as I can, so I'm in a water depth with which I'm comfortable and away from any other vessel that might end up moored and anchored in a way that I don't trust.

In Trinity Inlet we've sat out a close approach by a named storm that gave us high winds at the masthead (I'd have to check the log to be sure, but let's say 70 knots for now) while we at deck level were in calm air replete with biting midges and mosquitoes. After returning to Cairns, the main damage in the urban area was restricted to fallen trees and their consequences.
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Old 28-01-2019, 18:55   #5
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Re: Cyclone / Typhoon shelters Qld & Philippines

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And the principle I follow is to head as far up the creek as I can, so I'm in a water depth with which I'm comfortable and away from any other vessel that might end up moored and anchored in a way that I don't trust.
Other boats are my concern also. as the
" Extreme Weather Event Contingency Plan Cairns - 2017/2018" does not allow lines across any creeks . This means one can only make fast fore , aft and either Pt or Sb, Those rules are all a bit iffy, I draw 2.2m, but understandable from the point of view of a shallow draught vessel.
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Old 29-01-2019, 01:31   #6
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Re: Cyclone / Typhoon shelters Qld & Philippines

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Other boats are my concern also. as the
" Extreme Weather Event Contingency Plan Cairns - 2017/2018" does not allow lines across any creeks . This means one can only make fast fore , aft and either Pt or Sb,
We are liveaboards and stay aboard. So do many others (but of course, some Cairns locals dinghy somewhere and go to their land-based dwellings after securing their vessel).

Apart from a few foreign cruisers, most skippers will be Aussies. With a healthy (dis)regard for the letter of any law, regulation, or whatever.

Aussies do not hold dear the memory of the Eureka Stockade, Ned Kelly, Breaker Morant, and others for nothing. I do think that Aussies have become more compliant (and perhaps less technically competent because of the attractions of electronic entertainment) in my lifetime, but dey ain't dummies.

You are paying more respect to the black and white than an Aussie would; I hope that is not culture shock to you.

The reality is that once all boats are in the creeks, everyone runs lines across the creeks and/or puts out additional anchors. I can assure you that once the cyclone is at close approach, no authority figure will be going around to inspect the creek.

Needless to say, once the all clear is given, you need to remove those lines and anchors interfering with navigation. Some of those boats are used to fill people's rice bowls.

And the smarter skippers will check time of departure from their cyclone anchorage with the tide times to avoid touching the substrate on a falling tide.
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Old 31-01-2019, 22:29   #7
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Re: Cyclone / Typhoon shelters Qld & Philippines

Thanks Alan Mighty. for all your info provided in Cairns. Good stuff.
I did not get any info for Philippines, so I'll try this in a different forum.
Thanks again..
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Old 31-01-2019, 23:04   #8
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Re: Cyclone / Typhoon shelters Qld & Philippines

Puerto Galera, Port Princessa and there's a good typhoon hole on Busuanga island in the Philippines.

There's a couple of others that I can't remember.
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