Originally Posted by DtM
How wide is the passage
into Lke Macquarie?
Draft is not our issue but we are 9 metres wide
I don't know exactly how wide it is, if I had to guess, maybe around 14 metres? We are 7 metres wide, and have plenty of clearance. There are quite a few FP cat's in here, certainly 40 footers, and I know of one 45 - 50 footer which is usually moored up at Marmong cove.
I'd suggest if you were concerned, that around 1/2 - 3/4 tide will see less flow through the bridge. Even better would be an early ebb tide, because then what flow there was would be out rather than in, giving plenty of steerage without having to go too fast. That could mean a fairly long wait outside the bridge though. There are 3 public moorings at either side of the bridge for waiting.
You call Marine Rescue
Lake Macquarie on VHF
to arrange a bridge opening. Give them 1 hour's notice. They don't open the bridge at 4 pm weekdays because of peak-hour traffic.
You'll hear a bell ringing when they turn the traffic lights on the road red, we usually drop the mooring
then, which gives us plenty of time to move closer to the bridge as it is being opened.
Boats moving with the tide usually are given priority, so if the tide's ebbing, you might have to wait for other boats to come out. There are traffic lights on the bridge for vessels too. You don't often have to wait, though, boats generally leave in the mornings, and arrive in the afternoons.
If you sail down South past Wangi point, keep an eye out for a west cardinal mark, it's quite a long way out from the eastern shore, and catches a few people out.