Cruising – Gold Coast To the Sunshine Coast
After an overnight sail from the Clarence River we arrived at the Seaway Spit. This is another bar crossing and Dwayne told me to take the helm on this crossing. I’d like to tell you that the swell was huge and the waves were crashing all around us, and that I held my nerve and navigated through the wild seas with courage and skill….. however, it was fairly flat, little to no waves breaking, and although I crossed the bar unaided I don’t think there was anytime I needed an extraordinary amount of skill or courage. I just followed my GPS! BUT Dwayne says a bar crossing is a bar crossing and I can now say I have helmed over one!
We stayed at the Gold Coast longer than we had hoped. The time was used to get a heap of chores done, including fixing the toilet (twice) and defrosting the freezer (twice).
Dwayne fixed the toilet twice because once he had replaced the impeller he had a part left over and didn’t think much of it. This proved however to be an integral part of the mechanics of the toilet in question. Hence the need to fix it twice!
I, on the other hand, had to defrost the freezer twice because the day after the original defrosting I opened the freezer to find it icy again. It seemed the compressor fan had decided to have a day of rest; hence more ice for me to melt. Not a happy camper!
During the week we did a lot of walking and shopping. We had dropped the anchor in front of the Australia Fair shopping mall, so we took the time to re-stock the boat from the supermarket. A longer walk took us to Whitworths and as always we spent too much money there!
Other than chores, we spent the time catching up with old friends, new friends and family. We had a BBQ on shore with new friends the “Trufflehound” family and Will from “Misty Blue”… yes we cooked marlin steaks again… no, not sick of marlin yet!
We had drinks with an old friend I hadn’t seen for 15 years and spent the time telling tales from the old days! We had a BBQ with my cousin Kimberley, her husband Glen and their family. They cooked us the yummiest fattest steak we have had for a long time. It was a fantastic meal and really great to catch up with family.
We also had dinner at Surf Club Main Beach with Katrina who was in QLD for a conference. It was a busy time, great seeing friends and family but if truth be told we were glad to leave the Gold Coast.
Our journey to the Sunshine Coast took us up through The Broadwater and into Moreton Bay. It was lovely to have something other than skyscrapers to look at.
The first night out of the Gold Coast we anchored off Blakeley’s Slip Beach, Stradbroke Island. After setting the anchor we rowed to the beach and made our way through the soldier crabs and went for a walk through the bush.
It was late afternoon and the place was alive with birds. We came across a curlew playing dead. I have never seen an animal (alive) that could be so still. So while the bird played dead I got some photos. Then Dwayne go too close and it scampered off. Actually two of them scampered off.. We hadn’t even seen the other one lying nearby!
Our next stop was at Tangalooma, Morton Island. We anchored near the Tangalooma Wrecks, rowed ashore for a look around (saw our first dugong!) and had a glass of wine at Tangalooma Resort. As the sun was setting we rowed out amongst the wrecks for a closer look.
That night the anchorage was a little bumpy and the weather was only getting worst for this anchorage so the next day we decided to move on…. after I got a few more photos of the wrecks!
We spent the next night anchored at Bribie Island. We woke up at 0330 and set sail so we would avoid sailing against the tide as we made our way to Mooloolaba. It was an uneventful sail, apart from the close-up look we got of a naval ship.
Mooloolaba is one of our favourite places and, as with the Gold Coast, we once again had the opportunity to catch up with old friends and family. We met Farona and Greg in 2004 when we were travelling around Australia living in a tent. Although we have kept in touch we haven’t seen them since 2005. It was great catching up with them and after a drink at the Mooloolaba Surf Club they took us for a drive out to Caloundra to have a look around.
We spent Sunday morning catching up over a cuppa with Uncle Pete and Aunt Chelly. Later that day we joined cousin Marie, her husband John, daughter Lucy and son Edward at the Mooloolaba Yacht Club for lunch. It was nice catching up with all the goings on, and meeting little Ed (such a character) who was not born last time I visited.
We planned on staying in Mooloolaba only two nights, but us sailors are at the mercy of the wind and swell, and the upcoming weather was not advantageous to the next bar-crossing in our path. So instead of leaving Mooloolaba Monday morning we are still here on Tuesday with plans to leave Wednesday morning around 0400.
Will we get to cross Wide Bay Bar and go through the Great Sandy Strait or will we have to sail around Fraser Island? Check out my next blog to find out.
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