Year 5 Day 100 Shaw Island: 20S 30.16’/149E 02.86
09 May 2012 | Shaw Island, Near Burning Point
We left Scawfell Island at a “leisurely” hour: 0700. We could have left later but Mary Margaret wanted to get to our next anchorage early in the afternoon. We had thought we would be going to Thomas Island but by 0900 the winds had picked up and were blowing 20 knots from the SE. At 20 knots, we had read that the anchorage there would be rolly. We have had our share of rolly anchorages so we opted to go a bit further and make our anchorage at the SW side of Shaw Island. It is well protected from the swells that typically wrap around many of the islands that lie off Queensland.
It was a great sail as our heading was more WNW than NW so the SE winds were perfect for a wing and wing configuration and we really did not have to keep trimming the sails as we went. While the winds were still behind us (we were running with the wind), they behaved themselves and we were able to make 6.5 knots through the water. We actually went only about 6 to 5.5 knots over the ground since we were bucking a 0.5 to 1.0 current most of the time. However, it was really nice to be sailing and not have the noise of the engine growling in the background.
As we made our passage, S/V Miss Behaving slowly approached us from behind. We were basically on the same course. When it came close to us, I called Justine on the VHF radio and discovered that they were heading to Lindeman Island, which is just north of Shaw. From there, they will be going to Hamilton Island since his wife’s mother, Dot, will be leaving them from there.
Miss Behaving is a 55 foot monohull and they were flying their Yankee and Jib in a wing in wing configuration with no main. They were making about 0.1 to 0.2 knots more than us and slowly cut across our stern to pass us. It was a pretty sight to behold. We hope to bump into them again somewhere in the Whitsundays.
As we started to pass some of the southernmost islands of the Whitsunday group, it started to look more and more like the British Virgin Islands. We think the BVI’s is one of the best, if not the best sailing grounds in the world. It typically has winds in the 15 to 20 knot range, there are numerous islands with great anchorages, wonderful snorkeling and dive spots, and if you want fine restaurants and marinas, you can find that too. From what we have read about the Whitsundays, it sounds like you can have it all here also!
About 1400 we complete our 44 nm run and pulled into our anchorage. There was just one other catamaran here. After the last two anchorages having about 7 or 8 other boats, this was sheer bliss. While we love to socialize with other cruisers, we really look forward to having an anchorage to ourselves and chillin’ as we enjoy the solitude and the raw beauty by ourselves. The other boat is about ¼ mile from us so it is like we have the whole place to ourselves.
As an added benefit, it I take the computer up to the helm and plug in our wifi dongle, we can also get Internet here. Man, are we in seventh heaven or what! If the Internet holds tomorrow, I will start to upload and post the various photos we have taken since we left Keppel Bay Marina. I have a lot to post so tomorrow promises to be a busy day…