After Darren had finished his interview on Friday afternoon, we powered up the engine and set course for a waypoint at the entrance to Endeavour Straits – 318nm as the crow flies. However our crow was a little bit under the weather and as a result zip zagged his way along the rhumb line.
Shortly after we left I’d gone to bed to get some shut-eye and not 10 minutes later I heard a swoosh of water. I got up to find the front window had not been shut properly and a wave had got under it and came into the cabin. Magazines, charts, seats table, and floor all got a good salt water wash. Spent the rest of the afternoon rinsing and drying everything out.
After we got to deep water things settled down and we got down to the business of tacking our way across the gulf. The wind swung ESE and that wasn’t too bad an angle and reduced our need to tack. The winds were quite light, barely getting above 12kts and the swell was light and we were able to leave our main unreefed.
The next day, Saturday I believe, was much the same with light winds and little swell. We consulted the road atlas and found we were in Queensland – beautiful one day, perfect the next!
Not a ship or boat in sight, just the daily visit from the customs plane being the highlight of the day. That night, the wind completely dropped off to next to nothing and we partly furled in the jib and motored sailed directly towards our waypoint. Then within half an hour of Dragan coming on shift the wind went from 0 to 20 knots, the rain came and the swell grew. Everyone got up and we reefer down.
Sunday morning started off reasonably rough with a short 2m swell but turned out nice as the sun came out and the wind died off.
By late afternoon it was positively balmy and given we needed to slow down a little to make coast fall after sunrise, we decided to turn the motors off and drift along at 2kts listening to Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here”.
But as usual it did not last. Once again we went from zero knots to plenty in the blink of an eyelid. So in went 3 reefs again and we bounced our way along for the last 50 nm to Endeavour Straits.
Morning came and the wind and swell dropped as we neared land and up went the full sail. And then down came the rain as the wind swung north. Great day to be sailing south.
So here we are sailing through Endeavour straits towards our anchorage at horn island (opposite Thursday island) with everyone checking their phone and Internet after 3 days at sea.
So far we have done 366nm and have another 30+ to go until we drop anchor. Looks like an interesting day though. Just went through a squall and have got the 3rd reef in again. Plenty of rain to wash Camelot down.