Lush green and plenty of rain. Hmmm, I must be talking about in other years. It’s dry!

Blog Post 33 by Jon Sanders: Southbound, beyond Bundaberg

Bundaberg Queensland: East coast of Australia. Bundaberg region population near 100,000. Lush green and plenty of rain in the region. Hmmm, I must be talking about it in other years. It’s dry!

In Perth, on Australia’s west coast (the other side of the continent, i.e. the other side of the desert), it has a Mediterranean climate: rains in winter and dry in summer; homeowners and tenants in the suburbs hand water their lawns.

Not in Bundaberg. They are not used to that. The lawns are brown and dry. They won’t be that way for long, as the northern storm season is near.

In the meantime, the fronts and low-pressure weather systems come from the west to the southern portion of the south-west region of Australia. They sweep across the Great Australian Bight bringing rain, wind, gales and storms.

In the Bass Strait region, this weather can squeeze with other lows and depressions (The Bass Strait being between the Island state of Tasmania and the south-east of Australia), causing fronts with gales to sweep northwards along the Australian south-east coast.

The Equinox period (September) bring gales, sometimes severe. One must pick; ‘be picky’ and sail between the weather patterns. It would be stupid not to be picky (when possible, that is).

Bundaberg was a nice experience; in fact, everything has been A1 Read More

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My progress over the last several hundred miles may have seemed slow.

Blog Post 32 by Jon Sanders: Bundaberg Queensland

I have arrived Bundaberg Queensland. My progress over the last several hundred miles may have seemed slow.

Ok, so it was.

My ETA was Monday morning, from New Caledonia, but I got here on Monday.

One can always slow down. That’s a bit easy. Speed up. Hmmm.. “get real”. Me anyway.

The heavies delivering on large ocean racing yachts with all the athletic talents, that I have not, would speed up and blow out a spinnaker or two. “Who cares.” Rich owners will think that’s normal. (Cruising yachtsmen insurance premiums increase. Funny about that.)

The passage from New Cal. was perfect. Quiet and mild, with some zero wind for several hours – some of the time.

Calm. That is when I connect the tiller and put the electric auto steer tiller pilot to on. It wasn’t working leaving New Cal., but I got it going with WD40.

I think moisture had found its way in. It stuck things and helped not the electric circulation.

The wind vane self-steerer, which connects to the wheel – not the tiller – needs a bit of wind pressure, but it’s reliable.

I had a nice reception in Bundaberg

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Entering Bundaberg, QLD

Departed Noumea, New Caledonia, for Bundaberg, Queensland Australia

Blog Post 31 by Jon Sanders: New Caledonia to Bundaberg

Departed city of Noumea, New Caledonia, for Bundaberg, state of Queensland Australia. I was going to leave on the Saturday, but didn’t.  Slack you say, common sense I think. Fresh west and sou-west wind forecast over the weekend, true and proper head winds, that means going nowhere much. Bumpy.

As it transpired, when asleep, as snug as a bug – in the protected comfort of Port Moselle Marina, Noumea – 5 yachts outside at anchor, or on moorings, went onto the rocks. Sadly damaged; I think nobody was onboard. Other yachts with crew all OK.

Come Monday, there was not a lot of favourable wind, as per forecast, with the swell becoming less and less. Nice travel stuff.

Engine at low revs. Soon to come there was a bit more wind, though just a bit. No engine, on course, maxed out comfort.

Tied up near Perie Banou in the marina were Pip Sawyer and John Sharpe, in their wonderful, New Zealand built, Elliot 45ft named Sharp Focus. Pip and John would entertain me with the odd evening meal.

A few drinks first, of course

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