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Author Topic: Moreton Bay, off Brisbane, Queensland, Australia  (Read 422 times)

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Monster Mummy

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Moreton Bay, off Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
« on: July 01, 2012, 08:13:42 PM »
Moreton Bay has several little islands you can visit and moor up behind for a nice protected lunch and swim. We've one that was an old Leper Colony and has been left as a historically preserved island that you can moor up and tender in and have a walk around as is usually only accessed by charter groups so often you'll find yourself the only people on the island.

One of my favourites for an overnighter is to the really hospitably place of Little Ships Club over at Dunwich on North Stradbroke Island.  Usually on the sail back the next day we do a swim behind Peel Island and then head back to Manly.

Little Ships Club can offer non members pontoon mooring from $45 per night - they have a superb shower block and lovely nice hot showers that area really welcome after a hard sail over.

Moreton Bay is well know for it's light air which is why I had a furling Genoa custom fitted for my boat as more often than not you'll be trying to catch breeze - great if you've a kite or spinnaker.  Moreton is also well know for the quick squalls in summer and as the bay is so shallow the waves have a tendency to really stand up so can give you a bit of a workout on some days.

Some days if itís a bit feisty I love just going out for a bit of quick fast adrenalin sail - well as much as you can get in a caravan cruiser but hey - she's quite a quick line on her actually.

Anyhow - back to the Bay.  Coming out off Brisbane - best moorings can be found in Manly - where all the clubs are - you can also get some government moorings if your lucky operated by the Port.  Best access to get straight out into the bay for good sailing.  Down on the coast you've only the Broadwater - full of boaties and their wakes which don't appeal to me.  It seems to take forever just to get anywhere down in the Broadwater. You need to get out through the spit - to get any decent sailing done and away from the frenzied jet skiers and weekender 16 footers with their load of crab pots that are taller than the boat is long.

So Manly it is - well for me anyhow.  Straight out off there you are pretty much on top of three islands in a row north east of the leeds entrance.  A few hours will have out around the nearest of the three Green Island.  They often have races that go around Green as I would think it would be the nav' strategists dream to get the best course and account for the changes in the bay etc. 

Out further and past Green you head into what we call 'The Paddock' which can be the most serene perfect sailing day sun glistening on the water, dolphins, dugong's and a nice crisp sound of water slicing past or it can be the opposite with every wave a boat length long or bigger and each ride up ends up bow under and no less than three breaks hitting you in the cockpit - these are the days when I look forward to the showers at Dunwich - if I've been stupid enough to be the only yacht in the paddock clearly on the day where the weather report forewarned others but seemed like a bit of fun to me.

North of 'The Paddock' is Moreton Island - BEAUTIFUL place.  I go there for longer breaks in my low impact ecological caravan.  They've sunk old barges just off the beach and now are great wrecks supporting an abundant ecosystem.  Hours of holidays spent taking the tender out and snorkel gear and flopping over into the crisp blue to snorkel amongst the friends of below with that familiar coolness on your skin and tinkly tink in your ears and all the squeals and giggles diffused underwater of kids at summer having fun in the water.

There is quite a nasty current running past the wrecks at Tangalooma.  It is advisable to observe the tide start at one end of the wrecks just before the turn and then you are lazily taken along the wrecks with the current before it gets to it's full strength.  Even the best of swimmers will not be able to get back to the beach from the wrecks at the peak of the current as I see so many mismanaged Japanese snorkers washed down amongst boats trying to get across. 

I tie the tender rope to my foot and off I go - as it is an inflatable when it does have the audacity to try and overtake it doesn't hurt thankfully and easily checked back into line.

A short tender ride or stroll along the beach will have you at Tangalooma Resort.  Or as I call it I'm 'off to town'.  They don't allow boaties there after six at night but there is heaps of fun to be had during the day.  They've three pools along the boardwalk on the way. In summer you may have to sample each on your way to the bar.  The Pina Coladas' are to die for and there is always a good lunch to be had.

Be careful to keep and eye on the weather though as quite often a storm front will come from over the ocean side of the island and as you're on the side that faces West (Brisbane) you don't see it until it's showed its head over the mountain above you so some times it accounts for a very quick run to the tender to get to the boat and let out anchor for the northerly that will drag most boats.

Many boaties are unprepared for the current behind the wrecks and a lot drag and so when there is a storm chaos happens.  I usually let out about six metres and let the chain do all the work on the bottom.  Many times I've been greeted during the midst of a storm with power boaties all heading for home.  While I hold watch shining torch on the tender so they don't run it over as they are quite out of control at the best of times.

Meanwhile the rest of us that survive enjoy a chat later after all the excitement is over.

Further to the south of 'The Paddock' is North and South Stradbroke Island.  The north is where Dunwich is as I've mentioned earlier.  There is also bookable buoy moorings available.  The north island has a taxi and great regular bus service and all amenities.  I thoroughly recommend catching a bus to Point Lookout - surf beach and patrolled beach there.  If youíre a surfie you won't be disappointed.  The pub there Point Lookout Hotel - recently refurbished wouldn't be out of place on Hamilton or Dent Island it is so nice.

Anyhow - all good reasons to live in Brisbane and go sailing.

Monster Mummy

 

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