The journey began when we departed Fremantle on the 18th October with both Paul and I onboard and two good friends who are assisting with the delivery. A fairly pleasant start turned into a near gale uphill slog, which tested the crew and boat for a few days before arrival in Albany. A few minor running repairs a great deal of boat drying and some re-sorting took place in Albany as well as some dolphin watching, catching up with friends old and new and saying farewell to Paul.
After letting a front play through, we set off for Esperance to wait out the series of three strong fronts that were forecast to bring 7m seas and 50 odd knots of wind. The Esperance yachting community has been incredibly hospitable from arranging a berth (with a little help from Dubbo who knows everyone in this town) to the use of a vehicle (with hand-draulic Windows!) to the offer of an apartment and a yacht race.
Esperance is a fantastic little town and we have all enjoyed our enforced break here, having celebrated Karl’s birthday in style (champagne and cheese of course) and hoisted our rigger Marty (pictured) aloft for a rig inspection. Alas I cancelled the hull inspection due to the presence of a 4.5m white pointer being sighted close in shore the day before the planned dive!
Despite the comfort of sitting onboard in a safe marina we are itching to get moving again on the next leg across the Great Australian Bight and with the last strong front to pass our location around midnight tonight (Friday) our planned departure is 1400 Sunday 29th to allow some of the swell to abate. We are hopeful of about four days of favourable winds to advance us along our track and about a week before anything nasty comes onto the radar.
The philosophy for this voyage is and always has been to break neither vessel nor crew and to enjoy the journey. So far we have stayed true to this mantra.