22 October 2021 | 'S: 'E, Grand Chancellor Hotel, Brisbane
15 October 2021 | 27 26.662'S:153 06.434'E, River gate marina, Brisbane
12 October 2021 | 26 18.073'S:156 00.246'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
11 October 2021 | 25 41.635'S:158 24.609'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
10 October 2021 | 25 03.764'S:160 40.921'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
09 October 2021 | 24 16.537'S:163 21.449'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
08 October 2021 | 23 23.005'S:166 09.112'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
07 October 2021 | 22 12.270'S:168 20.490'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
06 October 2021 | 21 00.046'S:169 58.439'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
05 October 2021 | 19 49.684'S:171 35.302'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
04 October 2021 | 18 37.463'S:173 06.679'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
03 October 2021 | 18 11.767'S:175 05.347'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
02 October 2021 | 17 46.369'S:177 22.935'E, Port Denarau marina , Fiji
18 September 2021 | 17 46.369'S:177 22.935'E, Port Denarau marina , Fiji
16 September 2021 | 17 46.369'S:177 22.935'E, Denarau, Fiji
15 September 2021 | 17 46.369'S:177 22.935'E, Denarau, Fiji
14 September 2021 | 17 44.915'S:177 22.373'E, Denarau, Fiji
13 September 2021 | 17 44.915'S:177 22.373'E, Quarantine anchorage, Denarau, Fiji
11 September 2021 | 17 14.384'S:178 18.007'E, At Sea to Fiji
10 September 2021 | 17 32.600'S:179 35.350'W, At Sea to Fiji

Mr Toad's wild ride

06 October 2021 | 21 00.046'S:169 58.439'E, At sea from Fiji to Brisbane
7th October

21 00.046 S

169 58.439 E

Weather; squally, wind 5 - 22 knots, waves 1.5 - 3 meters

The unexpected happened when we were least expecting it, we got wind! But to back track the day light hours of yesterday passed in a whole lot of nothingness, the wind was noticeably absent for the most part and we motor sailed when we could and just motored when we couldn't keep the sails from flapping uselessly. The swell had died away and we were on glassy, mirror like water with just and occasional lift. The sky was a brilliant blue without a single cloud to cast a shadow. We tried our best to keep our speed at about 5 knots but fell short of this a lot of the time as Gerry just didn't want to push the engine too hard, he was happy as long as we could keep above 4 knots. We saw nothing on or in the water for the entire day. On the plus side it made cooking some brownies and a fish pie easy Ð we ate like kings last night. Having consulted the predict wind app. Gerry decided that we needed to have the main out to starboard for the up-coming wind which was supposed to be kic
king in and would be mostly on the nose with a slight movement to Port a little later. To this end we moved the main across and took the preventer off, we didn't think we were going to be needing it as the wind was only supposed to be up to 15 knots on the nose. Then a little later on Gerry thought we might as well take the spinnaker pole down and stash it away as he couldn't see us needing it if the wind was as predicted. It went away fairly easily as there was little to no boat motion at the time, as it turned out it was a good move to take it down at this point, not that we knew it at the time. Then came the night, and along with it the sky clouded over at sun set. There was a sun but we never saw it actually set as it disappeared behind a band of cloud that just suddenly appeared on the horizon and almost surrounded the entire boat. As we headed closer to the cloud the sky was getting its night time apparel on and had turned pitch black, it was hard to distinguish the no
rmal sky from the cloud cover. It began to look like we were in for another session of rain so the entire enclose was closed up in preparation, but it failed to eventuate. We took turns in going below to try and grab some sleep and in between we played at putting out the staysail and taking it back in in an attempt to move us along a bit faster, with no great success I might add we were still only managing to do 4.5knots with the engine running and the sails flopping and flapping. Gerry had gone for his turn at sleeping and I was won watch when at around 1am the wind suddenly went from 7 knots on the nose to 18 knots, without any preamble. This sounds good I hear you thinking, they must have picked up speed and been rocketing along, quite the opposite happened though, our speed dropped off to 3 knots and we began rocking horse motion as the wind was still directly on the nose. After a few minutes the wind began to move slightly to port, I fiddled with the main ( this being t
he only sail we had up at the time) to see if I could get us moving along a bit faster, we should have been doing more than 3 knots in 18 knots of wind but my fiddling did nothing to improve our speed and the wind was beginning to gust up to 20 knots so I reluctantly called Gerry out of his pit to see what we could do to improve our lot. He was astounded that we were going so slowly and thought that putting the staysail out might help, it really didn't. I got the Spanish inquisition about how and when this squall had appeared, what speed we had been doing before and what I had tried as even Gerry's fiddling was having minimal effect, we were having difficulty keeping the speed at 3.5 Ð 4 knots. That was the end of the sleeping for the night. It took at least another hour for the wind to come around to 30 degrees off the nose and we were able then to pick up a bit more forward motion, the swell was on the rise at the same time and the wind was now gusting at 22 knots making i
t an uncomfortable pitching motion. We tried to run without the engine given that the wind speed had picked up so much but this wasn't a viable option due to the inconsistency of the wind direction so the engine was left running and we settled into a sort of pattern at 4.5 knots but bashing our way through the waves which has continued right through to now. we have had waves coming over the gun whales at times and "caught" a couple of flying fish on the deck which got consigned back to the deep once day broke. At dawn there was still dark cloud cover on 3 sides of us but as the sun rose it began to burn off and we are now under a clear blue cloudless sky. The wind has remained at 30 degrees so we are pinching our way forward, trying to remain on track. The forecast of 17 knots is actually more like 21knots at the moment, it is supposed to come further round and on to the beam later today Ð can't wait for that to happen as we should be getting a faster and more comfortable ri
de at that point! So I'm going to leave this at this point as I'm finding it difficult to hit the correct keys with all the bouncing around we are doing.
Vessel Name: Opal of Queensland
Vessel Make/Model: Tayana 52AC
Hailing Port: Bundaberg
Crew: Nicky, Gerry and Priss
About: Motley mostly, especially the cat
Opal of Queensland's Photos - Main
30 Photos
Created 22 October 2021
10 Photos
Created 16 September 2021
25 Photos
Created 14 September 2021
57 Photos
Created 7 August 2021
44 Photos
Created 17 July 2021
69 Photos
Created 11 July 2021
41 Photos
Created 10 July 2021
33 Photos
Created 13 May 2021
49 Photos
Created 3 May 2021
59 Photos
Created 9 April 2021
34 Photos
Created 5 April 2021
9 Photos
Created 5 April 2021
68 Photos
Created 4 April 2021
21 Photos
Created 12 March 2021
26 Photos
Created 27 February 2021
plenty of broken bits and things to fix in Colombia
44 Photos
Created 25 February 2021
25 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
27 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
29 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
36 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
20 Photos
Created 13 February 2021
13 Photos
Created 5 December 2020
Wind indicator replacement
12 Photos
Created 24 November 2020
15 Photos
Created 3 November 2020
leaving Port Louis marina, travelling to Spice Island Marine yard and hauling out to do the anti fouling
60 Photos
Created 3 November 2020
10 Photos
Created 29 July 2020
20 Photos | 2 Sub-Albums
Created 5 July 2020
28 Photos
Created 26 June 2020
62 Photos
Created 20 June 2020
10 Photos
Created 4 June 2020
155 Photos
Created 4 December 2019
104 Photos
Created 4 December 2019
55 Photos | 2 Sub-Albums
Created 1 November 2019
The life and antics of Miss Priss aboard Opal
27 Photos
Created 1 November 2019

Who: Nicky, Gerry and Priss
Port: Bundaberg