For those of you visiting our blog for the first time and our friends who have been following it here is a brief summary of what has been happening since our last post which was back in 2012.
In December 2014 Red Sky was lost and her crew rescued . Below is a link to the story about that sad event.
Red Sky Rescue
We had sold her early in the year after what was a pretty rough couple of seasons for her.
In December 2012 we were in Fiji aboard Red Sky when Cyclone Evan - a cat 4 storm with winds of 235 klms per hour hit our location in Vuda Point Marina.
It was a scary experience and not one we hope to ever repeat.
Below is a video we recorded early in the storm , at this time the wind was about 70 kts , at the height of the storm it reached well over 100kts.
Apart from the emotional scars we were ok but Red Sky suffered a fair bit of cosmetic damaged and as a result she spent 6 weeks on the hard while we repaired her.
With the repairs completed we enjoyed the next few months cruising Fiji and this was one of the most memorable times ,,, we love Fiji.
You can see posts and pics from this time on our Facebook page Adventures in Fiji
Facebook Adventures in Fiji
We decided to tempt fate again and spend another cyclone season in Fiji but this time in the event of a cyclone we would haul red Sky out and put her in one of the Cyclone Pits at Vuda Marina .
The majority of boats that were properly prepared and located in these pits during Evan suffered no damage so we we pretty confident that we would be ok ,,,
We flew back to Australia for Christmas and although
there were no cyclones in 2013 Red Sky was struck by lightening while we were in Australia and it happened on the same day that Evan hit in 2012.
She suffered a direct hit to the mast and the damage was extensive ,, The hull had been compromised and of course all the electronics were fried !
The insurer once again came to the party , the same one who had paid out on the cyclone damage to the tune of $90,000 just one year before .
This time the damage / repair bill was over $200,000 . We decided to take a cash settlement and sell Red Sky "as is where is" . The thought of being stuck on the hard and making the repairs during the hot and humid summer in Fiji was not that appealing !
Red Sky was sold in 2014 and temporary repairs effected by the new owner who then sailed her to Australia to complete the work needed.
Having spent almost 8 months doing the repairs Red Sky set off on her maiden voyage with the new owner and his family aboard .
They departed the Gold Coast and were on route to Sydney when in very poor and challenging conditions Red Sky hit a submerged object , was taking on water and was subsequently abandoned.
The owner and his family were rescued by a passing tanker and happily they were all ok .
Red Sky Rescue
It was to be the third year in a row that the month of December proved to be unkind to Red Sky.
Sadly this time it was the end for her , she eventually washed up on the beach and the damage that resulted deemed her to be unrepairable. Red Sky had sailed her last passage.
We spent the 2014 season in Fiji on a friend's yacht and returned to Australia in late October .
The search had been on for a new boat since January 2014 and it was to be a Catamaran this time.
In February I inspected a 48.8 Ocean Cat "Songlines"
and really liked her but she was well out of our price range. In October I received a call from a yacht broker friend informing me that "Songlines" was still on the market and invited us to make an offer. In November we settled on the price and we were now the proud new owners of "Songlines"
We spent November & December taking care of some maintenance that "Songlines"
needed , new rigging , batteries and other stuff . In January she was ready for a shake down so we sailed her from the Gold Coast to Sydney ,, all was good and we were looking forward to our next adventure ,, Sailing to Fiji in April .
This was to prove to be an eventful voyage which at times made me thing that we might need rescuing !
To read about click this link ;
Australia to Fiji Passage
Anyway we made it to Fiji and we once again really enjoyed our time there.
In September we departed Fiji and returned to Australia with the Down Under Rally.
The Down Under Rally is our own creation and we are very pleased with the outcome of the inaugural 2015 rally
To learn more about the Down Under Rally visit ;
Down Under Rally
The current plan is to spend the SW pacific sailing season, May-October in Fiji , Vanuatu & New Caledonia enjoy the islands and promote the rally and then to return to Australia with the rally for cyclone season, November-April.
We regularly post updates and pictures about our adventures on The Down Under Rally website "newsroom" and the Down Under Rally Facebook page.
Down Under Rally Newsroom
Facebook Down Under Rally
So that's it 3 years in one post !
Hope to see you somewhere "out there"