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 Post subject: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 7:40 pm 
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Location: Calga NSW, Australia
Chekika wrote:
We've all been waiting--bring it on!
Keith

OK, here's my account. We all met at Shoal Bay on a sunny and auspicious morning. We drew the usual crowd of curious onlookers as we prepared the boats and a couple remarked that is was a bit choppy outside of the harbour. We shrugged and blithely sailed off through the heads into a ....hmmmm, whats the word?... oh yeah, maelstrom. So, we got totally hammered for about 3km. After we passed Cabbage Tree Island, to the North, things got better. The swell was still big, but at least it was all heading in the one direction.

I arrived at Broughton a little ahead of the others and proceeded to sail into the wrong bay and ended up chest deep in turbulent water, dragging my boat off some rocks. By this time, the others had arrived (at the correct destination) and radioed the Coastal Patrol that they had arrived but were missing one member. Fortunately, I was able to find them after about 45 minutes, before the rescue helicopter was dispatched.

Here's Esmerelda Cove, our destination:
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and here's the bay where I landed:
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Slaughter suggested that if I hadn't survived, they might have been able to have it named Chrisj Bay. That peak on the horizon, is the Northern Headland of Port Stephens, where we had come from.

There were some people staying in the huts at Esmerelda Cove, so we moved a bit further around the bay to Little Poverty Beach:
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The camp is top left and that's Stringy in the foreground, setting up a sun shelter.

Here's Stringy's pal Geoff, Mickeymouse, Stringy and Slaughter, sitting around the ring of stones at dusk (no campfires allowed). Please note the rectangular object next to Mickey's right knee - a four litre cask of red wine, which was certainly much appreciated as the evening wore on.
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After dinner, Slaughter disappeared into his tent and produced the iconic Australian dessert, a Pavlova:
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He steadfastly refused to divulge how he had got it through all that rough weather intact. All he would tell us was that his tent was now lined in whipped cream.

Unfortunately, the sea was just too rough for our planned adventure, exploring the sea caves around the island in kayak mode, so we spent the next morning exploring the island on foot. It is a wild and beautiful place. The photos speak for themselves.

We were a little apprehensive about a repeat of the previous day's conditions for the return journey, but, as it happened we had a steady following wind and swell for the trip back and everyone arrived at Port Stephens with a big Hobie grin. The swell was 2 to 2.5 metres, but with long period waves, so we got to ride the waves all the way back without any bow-burying issues.

I'm sure the others will have better photos and more lucid accounts of the journey, but that was my perspective.

Thanks fellas, it was great :D.

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 8:38 pm 
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Location: Maui, Hawaii
ChrisJ Bay, it's got a nice ring to it! :) Glad you survived and found your way back.

Great pictures. nice report.

Don't they allow you guys radios down there! Half the fun we have 'yak sailing here is the banter on the radios, especially when it gets wild out. The more wind and waves, the more chatter to keep the communications going.

As long as it all turned out well, and everyone had fun.

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 8:48 pm 
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Location: Calga NSW, Australia
Bob, I've got a brand new, allegedly waterproof Eagle marine radio, which failed when I tried to use it after the wet trip out :( . I totally agree with you that we should all be staying in touch by radio on these outings (you listening fellas?). BTW, I've found that even the mighty sprayshields don't keep you dry when 8' waves start crashing over the beam :lol:.

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 9:17 pm 
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Location: Maui, Hawaii
Waterproof radios are the way to go, but then I put them in a waterproof radio bag, mounted on my PFD. Easier cleanup, and easy one handed use.

Most waterproof items are rated for 3' (1m) under for 1/2 hour. Most any wave coming into our laps has more force than that. So, not so waterproof. :o

I've even taken to keep my phone and other non-waterproof items in waterproof bags for use, but then stored in a waterproof container attached to my aka crossbar (see below). Quick access, but I'm not gonna get another phone wet! :shock:
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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 11:38 pm 
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That trip looks like fun. I'm a bit upset I couldn't make it. Keep the pics happening and I'm all sure we want to hear about the magic tricks involved getting a pavlova over there in one piece.

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 4:35 am 
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Location: Lake Macquarie NSW AUSTRALIA
When I first started the thread, I pictured a gentle sail up gentle Cowan Creek, with a overnight camp and a laugh. A few weeks later I'm staring at a 4 metre + walls of water 7 kms from land. I must say that the trip was life changing for me.

Top report Chris. Firstly though, I don't reckon I'll be able to produce any better photos. They look spot on to me except the one of Esmerelda Cove where you photoshoped the waves out ?? And you'll be happy to know that in our 'Hobie World' ChrisJ Bay is now officially ChrisJ Bay. Also you forgot to mention that you broke your speed record.

Great bunch of blokes and good to finally meet with Mickeymouse and Geoff for the first time.

I hope to get my shots, some words and perhaps a youtube clip on the thread tomorrow.

And CGM, what are you talking about getting the Pav 'Over there in one piece' ? It was all done bit by bit. The hardest part was separating the egg whites from the yokes and then quietly whisking whilst in a 1 man tent. :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 6:35 am 
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Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
Nice work Chris! 8)
Looking forward to more pics/info.
It was a great trip. I am trying to edit some of the HD videos I took.
The lumpy horizon meant confused seas, especially at the start and end, as swell was bouncing off the rocks and hitting us from all directions.
This clip shows Slaughter just to starboard and gives an indication of the seas we were in.


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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:00 am 
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Location: South Florida
Good report, Chris. And, Stringy, nice video. You look fairly smooth, but Slaughter is catching some air!

You guys need to have radios, reliable radios! Kayaking Bob has very good advice. I've use a Uniden Voyager (available at a great price from Amazon) for years. If you buy a 2nd battery, which are very easy to change out, you don't have to worry about it going dead. In fact, on our recent 6-day trip, we used these radios regularly on a single battery. My first Voyager I used unprotected and it worked fine, but the controls gradually became corroded. Now, my wife and I each have one, and we keep them in an AquaPac dry bag--a bit less convenient, but corrosion free.

Nice trip.

Keith

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:32 am 
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Stringy! Is that as bad as it got? I thought you guys had BIG waves :) :lol:
Your video looked like a nice leisurely sail in a nice swell 8)
You must have turned off your camera when it got rough :lol:
You're brave though, with those full tramps on during that adventure. :shock:
Nice trip guys! I hope someday to visit.

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 12:43 pm 
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Location: South Florida
It looks like you fellows had a nice starter trip. The dessert shows you have real promise. If you want to see luxury AI camping, I've posted another one of our AI trips--4 AIs, so you have the camping trip record with 5. The link to our trip is
http://www.hobiecat.com/community/viewtopic.php?f=70&t=7276&p=96715#p96715

It is the 2nd post on that page.

Keith

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 1:33 pm 
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Goodness Stringy, I must have been hallucinating. It sure didn't feel that smooth.
Keith and Bob, thanks for the radio advice. The Cobra is only available through one outlet in Australia and doesn't seem well supported, but I will check out the Uniden.

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 1:50 pm 
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Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
Keith and Bob,
The wide angle and slo-mo make the waves look much smaller and smoother! :wink:
Your point about radios is a good one. We had tried them on other trips but gave up as it was very difficult to hear anything clearly with the radio in a plastic bag.
Some more pics:
The entry to Esmerelda Cove. Looking Glass Island the high point on the right.
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The Eastern side towards Looking Glass Island
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The Southern side:
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Looking South
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Looking North
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Last edited by stringy on Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:14 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 2:39 pm 
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Real time video, no slo-mo! :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 2:52 pm 
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Now THAT's more like it! :)

Stringy, I was just picking on you. I also have the hardest time actually showing the wave size and strength in stills and video.

Nice video of a great adventure.

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 Post subject: Re: Broughton Island Log
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 10:49 pm 
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Location: Gippsland Lakes Victoria Australia
I've just got home and read the Log thus far. All good stuff - hopefully I'll check out my video and stills and get something up tomorrow - or asap 8)
It was my first camping trip, first coastal waters AI trip and first time sailing in that very beautiful part of the world. :D
I would never have undertaken such an adventure without my four companions - Stringy, ChrisJ, Geoff & Slaughter. :) Thanks guys :wink:
Driving up, I must say I was a little alarmed to see signs to the Australian Shark & Stingray Centre enroute to out departure location. http://www.ozsharkandray.com.au/
Fortunately I had just purchased an electronic Shark Shield - so that gave me lots of reassurance :wink:
http://www.sharkshield.com/Content/Home/
I was amazed at how much equipment you can transport on the AI :shock: Apart from the wine, one of my biggest concerns was ensuring I had enough drinking water. As it turns out I had far too much and ended up tipping most of it out prior to the return journey - I wasn't the only one :wink: I would like to know how you guys that go out for 8 days manage to carry enough water and still have room for all the other necessities :roll:
I was far too spartan in my approach to a one night trip. :( Next time I'll take a leaf out of Stringy's book and take along gourmet sausages, eggs, bacon and a huge teflon coated pasta pot that would be capable of feeding a small army :lol: :P
Slaughter's magnificent Pavlova was a nice "happy ending" to out evening campside dinner - how about some ice-cream on the side next time Slaughter :lol: :P
I think we were all truly amazed and reassured to find the AI can cope with seas that would terrify many a trailer sailor 8)
I now feel confident that providing you choose your weather carefully, it would be possibel to island hop across Bass Straight to Tasmania. That would be an adventure and a half :shock: I think a support vessel would be comforting - if not essential. :wink:

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