Misto - August 7-16 2018: Last of the Whitsundays and To Cairns
Nara inlet is a deep, almost fjord-like inlet, on the south of Hook Island. The attraction is an Aboriginal site with rock art. We dinghied to the rocky beach and walked up the stone steps to the site which is well presented with interpretive information. The art is not the best we have seen but it again illustrates the long history of aboriginal residence here. Next stop was Cape Gloucester. We had a quick passage over and took a mooring ball off the Cape Gloucester eco resort. It was windy here with what locals call bullets coming down off the hills and across the anchorage. “Bullets” are accelerated gusts of wind funnelled through gaps in the surrounding hills. Here we ate the best meal ashore that we have enjoyed for a long time in the resort’s simple outdoor restaurant. It was a. read more...
Misto - Aug 3-6: Great Barrier Reef and Hamilton Island
We had not expected to take a Misto to the Great Barrier Reef but a weather window presented itself to go to Bait, Hook and Hardy Reefs, the nearest point on the Great Barrier reef to the Whitsunday Islands. Along with Smoke and Roses we spent the night on the north of Hook Island - we were on a mooring ball in Maureen’s Cove. We started at first light and arrived at Bait Reef around 9.30 am. We snorkelled on the Stepping Stones, huge straight sided pinnacles that rise from 25 m to about 1 m of the surface. The fish life was wonderful with huge reef fishes but the coral is still recovering from the cyclone in 2016 and is also somewhat bleached. We then motor-sailed over to Hook and Hardy Reef and went down the passage between them. It’s like being on a river with wonderful coral and. read more...
Misto - July 31-August 2: Iconic Whitehaven Beach and wonderful wildlife
Iconic Whitehaven Beach is the 3rd most photographed place is Australia, after Sydney Opera house and Uluru.But first, how did we get here?We departed Mackay on July 31 and made for Brampton Island.This gave us the first taste of the Whitsundays and we anchored in a pretty bay off an abandoned resort and were able to take the dinghy ashore and walk a fairly steep 4 km walk to the lookout and back.Sadly, there seem to be many resorts in this area abandoned as a consequence of the 2008 financial crisis and subsequent cyclone damage.Some, such as the one on Lindeman Island, has supposedly been purchased by a Chinese group and is being renovated but we did not see a lot of evidence of that.The resort on Brampton clearly has some care-taking staff there, but sadly it would take a lot of money. read more...
Misto - July 17-30: Misto comes second on Vanuatu to Mackay leg
The start of this leg in Vanuatu was in a brisk breeze and we had a good start with all our white sails up. The journey across to Mackay was pretty fast. For much of the time we had winds of 15-18 knots, gusting 20. Based on the wind direction we flew our parasailor and the gennaker, only making one mistake when we reefed unnecessarily one night which lost us some time against Spirit of Katherine. We crossed the finish line on the night of July 25 and arrived in Mackay on July 26, around 12 noon. The entrance to Mackay harbour was interesting as our port engine failed to start and we came in with one engine. The Australian immigration and bio security officials were very efficient and only took a few vegetables off us - which we expected. Docking with one engine was an interesting. read more...
Misto - July 17-22: Goodbye Vanuatu and halfway to Australia.
The last couple of days in Port Vila were filled with the usual pre-departure activities and by trying to put faces and names to our new WARC friends.The dinner and prize giving certainly helped with this and we revelled in being part of the camaraderie of a rally again.The start was in a lively 16+ knots of wind and we had a good beginning to our journey.The winds have been great so far on this leg, blowing consistently 12-20 knots from the ESE and SE, which is making for a fast passage.We have had our full suite of sails out, utilizing the parasailor, gennaker and the white sails to try and take best advantage of the beautiful sailing conditions.If the choppy swells would abate it would be a sailor's dream and absolutely perfect. For most of the night we have some moon which makes the. read more...