The Southern Cross
report at 1045 local time Thursday. Enjoyed a week in Manly, although the Store Beach anchorage was very busy on the weekend with up to 30 boats nestled around us. Departed this morning and 7 nautical miles and two hours later we?ve arrived in Blackwattle Bay, near the Fish Markets at Darling Harbour. Iconic sites along the way included the Opera House and sailing beneath the Sydney Harbour and Anzac Bridges. Last anchored here 12 years ago.
report at 0745 local time Friday. Anchored off Store Beach, near Manly, Sydney Harbour. Departed Eden at 2pm Wednesday. An uneventful sail along the NSW coast. Entered Sydney Harbour heads at first light alongside our friends on the sailing vessel Sol. We'd hoped to find some warmth and sunshine, anchored in pouring rain. At least the salt from a bouncy sea in Bass Strait is being washed off.
report at 1000 local time Thursday. Departed Eden at 2pm yesterday. Sailed overnight hugging the NSW coast. Plan to continue on to Sydney Harbour with arrival tomorrow (Friday).
report at 1600 local time Tuesday. Arrived safely in Eden at 1515 In 54 hours we travelled 325 nautical miles with some sporty sailing and mundane motoring.
report at 0715 local time Tuesday. Motoring around Gabo Island, Victoria in light conditions. Heading towards Eden, New South Wales. Sun just rising out of cloud on eastern horizon. All is well on board
report at 0945 local time Monday. Departed Port Sorell, Tasmania 25 hours ago. Had a feisty sail yesterday with winds reaching 33 knots and boat speed 12 knots. White water in the cockpit and plates flying around the galley. Wind has gradually abated from 25 knots at 8pm, to under 20 at 2am. Seas and swell have reduced making a much more comfortable platform on which to live. Barometer has risen from 1003 to 1023 in 25 hours. Have sailed 165 nautical miles.
report at 0845 local time Sunday. After spending over a week anchored off Baker Point, Port Sorell, The Southern Cross?s crew are preparing to cross Bass Strait. Have enjoyed our time in this beautiful spot: walks on beaches, catching up with old friends and making new ones. Easy access to supplies.
report at 0930 local time Saturday. Thursday around 10pm The Southern Cross refloated on the rising tide. Re-anchored in six metres, 100 metres off Bakers Point.
On Thursday we beached The Southern Cross at Baker Point, Port Sorell to remove fish farm line from around port saildrive shaft. Many thanks to our friend Tim, ex Rubicon Star, for his invaluable assistance.
report at 1900 local time Wednesday. This morning moved 5 nautical miles from outer anchorage off Port Sorell into the Rubicon River. Anchored by 10.30am.
report at 0700 local time Wednesday. Departed Coulomb Bay, Three Hummock Island at noon yesterday. Motored overnight in light winds, with some soft rain. Unable to see the near full moon due to cloud cover. Have anchored off Port Sorell for a few hours awaiting a favourable tide to move into the Rubicon River. We were accompanied by dolphins into anchorage as the day dawned.
report at 1900 local time Monday. Departed Ann Bay, on north west coast of Tasmania this morning and sailed up past Cape Grim and the Doughboy Islands. Zigzagged around Brown Rocks, Bird Island and up through Hunter Passage assisted by engine and sails. And then a rollicking sail northwards to Coulomb Bay, Three Hummock Island. Glorious scenery along the way on a bright sunny day.
report at 1000 local time Sunday. Departed Strahan yesterday morning after buying the weekend newspaper and bananas. Passed through Hells Gates and out of Macquarie Harbour before noon. Sailed overnight under a waxing gibbous moon, until it set at 0200, and then a galaxy of stars. A comfortable dry decks passage to Ann Bay, just south of Cape Grim. We?ll wait here for a few hours, or perhaps overnight, and then head around Tasmania?s north western cape.
report at 0910 local time Tuesday. Departed Birch’s Inlet three days ago on light southerly winds and motored to the town of Strahan. A series of cold fronts bringing rain and moderate to strong winds continue to blow through. During dry spells we have stretched our legs ashore, provisioned and purchased fuel. We are enjoying catching up with fellow cruisers while we wait for a good opportunity to head further north.
report at 1530 local time. Early this morning, we motored 7 nautical miles across the southern end of Macquarie Harbour to Birch's Inlet. Another beautiful spot where the wind blows and the rain falls.
report at 1300 local time Wednesday. The Southern Cross remains in St Leger Point, Kelly Basin while her crew explore more of this area on foot or hide on the boat from inclement weather. Today we have experienced rain and hail. Midday temperature 14°C inside the boat. Fortunately snow is predicted only to fall on the high country and not at sea level.
Left Kelly Basin at 0700 and the above report was written at 0815 local time Monday while moored at Sarah Island. Walked around a deserted Sarah Island on our own looking at the remains of a convict settlement, and undertook a second lap tagging along on a tour of the island with 40 other people who arrived on a tourist boat. At noon we returned to St Leger Point in Kelly Basin, as per Saturday's position report. In the afternoon we hiked through lush rainforest for 11 kilometres along the Bird River Track.
report at 1730 local time Saturday. Enjoyed three days 20 miles up the Gordon River. Mirror smooth waters with wonderful reflections, including the stars at night. Reached the first rapids in the Franklin River via dinghy. Walked through dense rainforest where we spotted a Boobook owl who posed for us. Now anchored off beautiful St Leger Point in Kelly Basin, Macquarie Harbour. Peter has made arancini balls for tonight's meal. It doesn't get any better than this.
report at 1930 local time Thursday. Departed Strahan this morning and travelled 18 nm up the Gordon River to Warners Landing where we are rafted up to SV Sengo. You can feel the serenity. (Tried to send Thursday evening but not able to connect)
report at 1930 local time Tuesday. Departed Port Davey at 1900 last evening in misty conditions. Southerly winds built overnight and we had an easy sail with up to one metre following seas for 100 nautical miles to Macquarie Harbour. Came through Hells Gates at noon with up to three knots of negative current. Bananas have been sourced from the IGA at Strahan.
report at 1600 local time Monday. Motored four nautical miles from Schooner Cove, Bathurst Channel, to Spain Bay, Port Davey. Enjoyed a three hour return walk across the headland to Stephens Bay which faces the Southern Ocean. The weather cooperated, and the rain started as we returned to the dinghy. Currently, sharing the anchorage with seven boats including Crusader (met in Ikuka NSW, 2007), Pampero (met Indonesia, 2008), Kosa (met Turkey, 2010) and Jigsaw (met Bundaberg, QLD, 2017). Ran out of bananas yesterday. Hope to use the forecast southerlies to push us northwards to Macquarie Harbour.
report at 1600 local time Sunday. This morning we moved The Southern Cross two nautical from Bramble Cove, Port Davey, to Schooner Cove, Bathurst Channel. Went dinghy exploring for four hours, peaking into bays and coves, admiring the views.
report at 1800 local time Saturday. A beautiful sunny day, spent sailing around Bathurst Harbour admiring the views and then motoring westwards down Bathurst Channel to Bramble Cove, where we climbed Mt Milner.
report at 1900 local time Friday. After three boat bound days the wind settled and the rain became showers. Thursday afternoon we dinghied 5 nautical miles up to Meleluca Lagoon. From bird hides we saw the critically endangered Orange-bellied parrot. Meeting two hikers, who had walked for 10 days through hail and rain, helped us realise that sitting on our boat for a few wet days wasn't so bad after all. Earlier today we hiked up Mount Beattie to gain views across Bathurst Harbour, Mount Rugby, along Bathurst Channel and towards the distant ocean.
report at 1430 local time. Went ashore and explored Claytons Corner on the weekend before the wet and windy weather started Monday. Have been boat bound for two days. Hoping that the weather will fine up and enable us to climb a hill or two.
report at 1100 local time. Departed Recherche Bay at 6pm last night. Sailed and motor-sailed overnight with favourable winds, passing Maatsuyker Islands at 0100 as the moon was setting. Arrived in Port Davey at 0800 where we were greated by misty grandure. Spent three hours tooting upstream to Kings Corner in Bathurst Harbour, bedazzled by the scenery including reflections on mirror smooth water.
report at 1630 local time. Departed Alexanders Cove, Barnes Bay at 8 o'clock this morning. We sailed and motor-sailed 30 nautical miles down the D'Entrecasteaux Channel to Coalbins Bay in Recherche Bay. Maximum gust 28 knots and maximum boat speed 9 knots. We pushed into 23 knot winds to enter the bay. The wind dropped soon after we anchored at 4pm.
report at 1630 local time. Departed Prince of Wales Bay Marina this morning after a pleasant stay in Hobart. After a 20 nautical mile trip, in which we experienced winds from all directions save easterlies, we have anchored in Alexanders Cove, Barnes Bay.
report at 1000 local time. This morning The Southern Cross motored 3 nm up the Derwent River and is now berthed at Prince of Wales marina. We plan to stay here for two weeks: to sightsee in and around Hobart, catch up with friends, attend the Wooden Boat Festival and buy boat parts.
The Southern Cross was relaunched on Friday 25 January. Pleased with our haulout experience thanks to the expertise of the marina staff in operating their hydraulic trailer.
Currrently in pretty Cornelian Bay, Hobart, on a mooring.
Report at 2000 local time. On the hardstand at Margate Marina after being hauled out on a hydraulic trolley. Staff have been professional and friendly. Hulls are in good condition. Plan to work on engines and apply anti-fouling paint before returning to the water.
Report at 1715 local time. Arrived Margate Marina this afternoon in preparation for the boat's haulout tomorrow morning.
Report at 1345 local time. Moved 1.5 nautical miles in Barnes Bay from the Duck Pont to Quarantine Bay. Visited the Bruny Island Quarantine Station, tying the dinghy up to their pontoon.
Report at 1100 local time. Departed Nubeena on the Tasman Peninsula yesterday and motor-sailed 25 nautical miles to the Duck Pond, Barnes Bay, North Bruny Island An electrical storm blew through briefly last night. Plan to remain here, in this quiet pretty spot, today and haul out at nearby Margate Marina on Friday 18 January. Tasmania is recording record high temperatures. We are wearing fleeces, trackpants and ugg boots.
Report at 0815 local time. Departed Port Arthur at midday yesterday. A rip roaring sail out of the harbour to the Southern Ocean. A slow sail around the stunning cliffs at Cape Raoul where pods of dolphins flocked to play with The Southern Cross. The wind dropped out and we motored into Wedge Bay where a curious seal came up to our stern to say hello. It was a 20 nautical mile journey to Nubeena on the Tasman Peninsula, only 6 nautical miles across land from our previous anchorage. We went ashore last evening and bought provisions from the small grocery store.
Report at 0645 local time. Moved to another anchorage near the Port Arthur Historic site late yesterday because the overnight forecast was for winds up to 25 knots from the north, and our spot in Carnarvon Bay was unprotected. Motored 1 nautical mile in winds gusting to 15 knots. As soon as we anchored the wind dropped and overnight it was calm.
Report at 0745 local time. Maximum wind we saw in Stinking Bay yesterday was 21 knots. At Tasman Island, 8 nautical miles away, the wind gusted to 47 knots. Moved 2 nautical miles this morning to Carnarvon Bay, near the historic Port Arthur site.
Report at 0800 local time. Departed Maria Island before sunset. An uneventful overnight passage around Tasman Island to Stinking Bay, Port Arthur. Despite its name, this is a beautiful cove. We hope it provides good protection from this afternoon's forecast strong NE winds. Plan to explore ashore tomorrow.
Report at 1745 local time. Left Orford anchorage this morning and sailed down Mercury Passage. Saw a seal sunning itself in the waters near Lachlan Island. Anchored in Chinamen's Bay, Maria Island. Went for a walk around Point Lesueur peninsula. Saw convict ruins, eucalypts, butterflies, locusts and scats (possibly wombat). A beautiful day.
Report at 1830 local time. Left Shelly Beach this morning and motored less than a mile to anchor off the town of Orford. Despite small surf running it was easy to land and launch the dinghy off the nearby beach which has firm white sand. It was an easy walk into town where the small grocery store sold all that we needed. The Pop Up Book Stall, held in the local primary school, sold a wide variety of books. Peter bought two on Winston Churchill. We have stunning views of Maria Island to our east and plan to head across to the island tomorrow.
Report at 12.45 local time. Sailed overnight southwards down Tasmania's east coast from Skeleton Bay to Shelly Beach near Orford.
Report at 0600 local time. Sailed overnight from Tamar River on the northern coast to Skeleton Bay, north of St Helen's on Tasmanian's east coast. We had a fast wild ride yesterday covering 80 miles in 12 hours. The last 12 nautical miles took 8 hours as we drifted waiting for light to enter this anchorage. After today's forecast southerlies we aim to set sail once more.
Report at 1015 local time. Departed Tamar River soon after dawn and now we are a little under halfway from Tamar River to the NE corner of Tasmania. Aim to sail overnight down the east coast of Tasmania, on our way towards Hobart. Maximum wind so far 31 knots. The wind is from behind so it is a comfortable ride.
Report at 1230 local time. Arrived at the entrance markers to Tamar River, which leads to Launceston, Tasmania, at 0530. With the current we traveled upstream to a delightful anchorage in West Arm. It took us 48 hours to travel 275 nautical miles from Port Fairy to the Tamar River. The westerly quadrant winds, which blew up to 27 knots, kept us sailing happily for three quarters of the trip. Around midnight last night the winds, as forecast, came up from the east and we were hard on the wind on a lumpy sea for the last few hours of this journey. We are now in a haven surrounded by verdant hills and bird song, reminiscent of the Chesapeake in the USA.
Report at 1600 local time. Sailed past the northern tip of King Island under clear starry skies. Currently 30 nautical miles north of the north coast of Tasmania. Apart from ourselves, we haven't seen anyone else this year. A fast rollicking ride at the moment.
Report at 1600 local time. Enjoyed a two day stay in Port Fairy: walks on the beach, laundry, hot showers, provisioning, engine maintenance and the Port Fairy New Year's Eve street parade. Departed this morning heading towards Tasmania. Westerly winds are pushing us along nicely. Currently 20 nmiles south of Cape Otway, entering Bass Strait.
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