05/19/2012, Stonehaven Anchorage, Hook Is. AU
We came very close to running over to Langford Island to go snorkeling today. Our friends of S/V Infini, Mike and Susan, actually did run over there but never got into the water. We were planning to join them but we first wanted to make some calls using Skype. We have great Internet here, which is refreshing.
When Mike and Sue got to Langford Island, they called us on the radio and we told them that we thought we would be over in about a half hour. I had been watching the Met radar and it looked like there would be a patch of blue sky after the second of numerous rain cells that were heading our way passed us by.
As we waited out the rain, we called our three kids, who are all together in San Francisco for the weekend. They were at a restaurant ordering drinks when we called. They take after their dad on that subject. I'm such a bad influence... We had a great talk and we are so thrilled and fortunate that each of our kids are so close and supportive of each other.
Afterwards, it was still raining so we called John and Cheryl of S/V SeaMist. We had just received an email from them saying that they and S/V Kilkea are now at Goldsmith Island, in the southern Whitsundays. It was great to hear their voices. Like us, they too are fed up with the crummy weather. Plus, to make matters worse, at each of their anchorages, they have had very rolly times. It was not too bad a Goldsmith now but they are not happy campers. I suggested that they and Kilkea should go to Butterfly where the anchorage is very well protected from the swells and the water is very calm. You do get bullets and there is no Internet but you can sleep well throughout the night. They may do that and if they do, we will most likely run over and join them. However, to lose Internet, man, that is tough!!!
Once we were done with our calls, I ran up to the helm and prepared to leave. When I returned to the salon, Mary Margaret was rushing around getting things ready also. However, I suggested that we wait a bit longer since the clouds coming over the mountain peak in front of us looked ominous. In a few minutes it was raining again. These rain cells are just popping up as they pass over Whitsunday Island and make their way here. The Met radar changes just about every minute regarding where the rain cells are.
After waiting two more hours, we called Infini and told them we were just staying put. They had motored over to the sand spit and walked it a bit. They said the water look very murky and without the sun, they really could not see the coral as they motored over it.
When they returned to our anchorage, we invited them over so Sundowners. We had a great time together and it was wonderful catching up after not seeing each other for two years. They too are doing the Sail Indonesia Rally so we look forward to getting together a number of more times.
Techno-Tip Of The Week: Grease Those Tools
When you get ready to start your cruising life, you will be sure to bring with you every tool in your tool box. You will end up using each one sooner or later. However, you will quickly discover that they will start to corrode the minute you have them on your boat. The salt air and water environment is just so conducive to the corrosion of metals that it is next to impossible to prevent.
However, if you start early, you can go a long way in slowing down the corrosion process. What I do is I wipe or spray a little CRC Lanolin onto each tool. This coats the surfaces and protects the metal. Before I use each tool, I may have to use a rag and wipe it off a bit but the tool is in good shape and ready to use.
05/18/2012, Stonehaven Anchorage, Hook Is. AU
Early this morning I posted a number of the pictures that I had taken when we were without Internet. While I was doing that, it was pouring rain. However, as the morning progressed, the weather cleared and the sun was shining. I checked the weather radar at Australia's Bureau of Meteorology and saw that while a number of rain cells were making their way toward us, they just might pass closer to the mainland and miss us. Ah ha...a snorkeling trip to Langford Island just may be in the cards today. I told Mary Margaret that low tide was going to be around 1430 so, weather permitting, we should motor Leu Cat over there around 1300 or so. She was as gun ho as I was.
As the morning progressed, the skies remained clear but the winds picked up and we started getting 25 knots. White caps had formed in the passage between us and Langford Island. This was not good as it meant that the water would be all cloudy and even a low tide, we would be fighting a stiff surface current pulling us away from Leu Cat and the reef.
Then... the winds died and I started getting excited again. However, in a few minutes a cloud passed over and it started raining again. But then... the cloud passed by and the winds were only 10 to 15 knots. Maybe, just maybe, the weather gods would stop playing with us and let us get our snorkeling trip in...
Well, what do you think happened? Did we go diving or was it another bust day? For those of you who are faint of heart, not made of tougher stuff, who are weak kneed or just big pussy cats, do not read any further. If you do, tears will flood your eyes and you will fall to the floor and pound the ground in utter frustration. At least that is what I did...
The winds came up and it also rained. It then calmed down and stopped raining only to repeat this cycle again. Mary Margaret looked at me down on the floor, one big puddle of tears; hands balled in fists and red from pounding the floor and finally realized, after 41 years of marriage, what type of guy she had married!
These weather gods are so cruel here in Australia. To make matters worse, the weather report now talks about an upper level trough heading our way to be followed by another upper level trough. Man o' man, a double whammy of upper level troughs! This means that the air is going to be very unstable through all of next week and some of the weather web sites are predicting rain everyday throughout the entire next week! We still may be able to sneak in a quick dive tomorrow. At least that is my story and I am sticking with it...
I was so fed up with the crummy weather I just fell off of Leu Cat to get into the water. Ahhhhh, it felt soooo good. I ended up grabbing the scrapper and a scrub pad and removed the green beard that was growing along Leu Cat's waterline. Of course, as I was finishing after being in the water for about an hour, it started pouring and the wind whipped through the two hulls.
On the positive side, last night before we went to bed the resort that is on Hayman Island, about a nm or so north of us had a great fireworks show. It was awesome and lasted a good 15 to 20 minutes. Also, our friends, Sue and Michael of S/V Infini sailed into our anchorage here this afternoon. We talked a bit on the VHF radio and hope to get together tomorrow. We have not since them for about 2 years so that would be great.
Here is a shot of Leu Cat as we swam back from our dive. Notice the new shade tarp on the front.
One of the many Sargent Majors we aw during this dive.
While snorkeling Mary Margaret spied this two foot across, green-colored giant clam. It was so fat, that it could not readily close up tight when I approached it.