Duplicat's Diary

And away we go…
by Rick at 05:30:30, 2022-05-28 (day 2946)

After a last minute speed fix on my toilet tank pump, we were ready for the off. At 6:45am we lifted the anchor and made our way down towards Southport Yacht Club. Our first port of call was the diesel pump where we put in 160litres at A$2.23/litre. A small motorboat was on the pontoon, but he moved back to the petrol side as he just wanted petrol (which seemed to have run out and explains why we found it slow taking fuel for the dinghy the other day). A large motorboat came in as we were finishing up, so we quickly sorted out the receipt and last rubbish run, then moved onto the Superyacht dock where we’d seen Australian Border Force (ABF) earlier.

ABF were clearing out another yacht, this one headed to Noumea, New Caledonia. We’re all jumping on the same weather window as these conditions are pretty rare at this time of year. As we pulled up onto the dock, the ABF officials were waiting for us. They couldn’t have been more friendly. We had a nice chat over the formalities, which did not take long, and with a few signatures and some receipts handed over for a possible GST/VAT return, we were free to go. In fact we had to go, immediately. Which we expected.

The trip down to the Southport seaway was spent getting the last few things stowed away. Then it was out in the maelstrom (just kidding). It was a bit lively on the bar, but not in any way dangerous. We pottered out slowly with the current (ebbing tide) and were soon out in 20m water. The depth continued to fall away. We got the genoa out, and motorsailed for the morning trying to put as much distance east in as possible. The wind had been about 10 knots.

The afternoon saw us switch to the screecher as the wind dropped and continued to go behind. The surprise for the afternoon was seeing a whale blowing near us. I hadn’t expected them to be out here so early in the season - but always nice to see.

Today has been about making some distance. Tomorrow the same. Monday and Tuesday will be the windy days of the trip, and then it should calm down a bit, and move to a beam reach for Fiji. Fingers crossed everyone!