Monday, March 31, 2008
Water in the oil is never a good look, so have to systematically logically track out where it comes from before continuing on. The whole engine thing is a bit abstract but getting to know it pretty well pretty quickly!
Sunday, March 30, 2008
15 knots winds increasing
On way to Townsville, weirdly enough via the OUTSIDE of the GBR! Great ride
downwind once the wind started (went from a 50 knots storm yesterday to nil this
morning but SE have pickep up again pushing Kuna at 6 knots along the 250 miles
ride to Towsville. The idea of tacking ones way through the Hydrographers
passage to cross the barrier reef (passage to get to Mackay) at night in high
winds was rather unpleasant, as large ships also manoeuver in this narrow
passage. While the Kuna was poorly heaving to near the pilot boarding station
(pilots get dropped by helicopter outside the GBR to guide the ships in) we
heard the russian captain records of winds speeds 45 to 55 knots, prior to the
After being quite tired by 12 hours of tring to stay stationary in the storm
yesterday, it felt much easier running to Townsville when the winds abated,
though it brings us westwards and 200 miles further from the Solomons, adding
200 more miles to the crossing!!
24 hours to go now. Spent most of the day cleaning the engine room from the oil
spilled and looking for cause of problem that will have to get fixed, changed
oil and tidied up the boat from the storm!
By the way, anyone has suggestions on how to COMPLETELY stop forward speed on a
fin keel Adams while heaving to ? First storm test didn't quite make it! Need to
dom some research
Friday, March 28, 2008
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Will check email every few days, can not send or receive attachments.
- short text email (switch off html formatting, remove signatures, disclaimers, etc), no attachment to: yacht.kuna1[‘AT’]ASTMail.net
- 160 characters email to : 881631641778 [‘AT’] msg.iridium.com, with nothing in subject line (like an SMS, but sent by email)
[‘AT’] to be replaced by @ in the text (spam protection here) in both the above
- call satellite phone number +881631641778,
A long day sail trying to make up the distance lost during the rescue (and recovering from a boozie night onboard a big flash boat parked next to Kuna the night of the rescue). 70 miles got Kuna to the back of Curlew island ( S21° 35.7 E149° 47.8). The handcrafted windvane is working brilliant, so could have an afternoon nap! Despite the full moon, approaching amongst the familiar dark rocky reefs and islands was quite intimidating because of some large overfalls and reasonable speed! Anchored safely yet too far out and made for rolly anchorage in the current, bugger!
Now hurrying to Mackay, or trying to, because he winds have abated for the first time in three weeks. Heading directly downwind from Curlew Island with light Southeasterlies with the headsail poled out, Kuna cruised between 5 and 6 knots all the way, so that's hurrying on a 10T cruising yacht...
The forest of empty cargo ships at anchor near Mackay there is always impressive. I tested the radar detector (Kuna does not have radar, just this 20 years old piece of equipment that detects ships radars and produces an excruciating tone as a warning!)
Reluctantly had to go into the marina as that's where the customs office is, and it'll be convenient: Will do hull repairs from the pen there and sort out last minute needs before clearing. The hardest will be to disconnect from the convenience of the internet, but I worked out how to send sitreps with just the iridium phone!!! But this marina place feels extremely claustrophobic, can’t wait to get out!
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A brief visit to the Keppels.
Enter Port Lincoln (S22°32.14, E150°45.2) at night, in nice moonlight, been there before on the Mudcat..
Off Cape Townshend
on Saturday Kuna picked up a family of four in a swamped dingy in rough seas 45 mins after their 55 motor cruiser caught fire and they abandoned ship with nothing but the clothes on their backs. It was in a remote area and there's few boats transiting this time of year, so they were very Lucky Kuna was in the area. No time to take photos. They're all OK (the boy had a broken leg) but in the process of coming along side their swamped aluminum dingy in very choppy conditions, it repeatedly banged violently on Kuna's hull, so she's got a few scratches. 3 hours later a rescue shopper (against our polite advice) tried to drop a Medic down onto us by winch and succeeded in only fouling our rig with their line! Was rather unpleasant in 25 knots of wind and heaving seas to be tied by your mast to a hovering chopper! Having had to stop sailing because of rescue chopper orders, Kuna was now unable to sail because of tangled rig so we had to motor around the back of Cape Townshend. The coastguard rescue boat met us there with the medic onboard but they were so fast pulling along side even before Kuna's was anchored properly. The evening was spent climbing up the backstay to detangle the rescue line from the topping lift, salvaged the yellow line to turn it into a reefing line, good bootie!
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Thursday, March 6, 2008