Category Archives: Cruising North Coast

it’s a wrap …

By | November 17, 2019

Our 2019 sailing season is nearly over … and it’s definitely a wrap for my snorkeling season! My last snorkel was at Lady Musgrave Island. We snuck out to Fitzroy Reef and Lady Musgrave after we were doubting we’d

lady musgrave island

By | November 11, 2019

We’ve been to Lady Musgrave Island several times and we love it, particularly this time of year as it’s turtle nesting season.  It was a hard decision … stay at Fitzroy Reef for an extra two nights, or spend some time on LM island hoping to see a turtle lay

fitzroy reef

By | November 10, 2019

After five fantastic days at Yellow Patch we had hoped we’d see at least a few days of outer reef weather and we did! Fitzroy Reef and Lady Musgrave Island were ‘sort of’ on our way south so we grabbed the opportunity. We entered Fitzroy Reef with 

yellow patch

By | November 3, 2019

In 2016 we visited Yellow Patch on Curtis Island. We have finally returned! Yellow Patch is a treasure! A large orange (not yellow) coloured sandhill slopes down to a deep water beach, extensive white sand flats fill the inlet and endless mangrove creeks meander deep in to the inlet, further than the eye can see.… Read More »

keppel magic

By | October 28, 2019

It’s timely being at Great Keppel Island. My friend Chris from Anui (ex Take It Easy) has just had an article published, ‘Keppel Magic’, in the Australian Multihull World magazine, Sep/Oct edition. (Multihull World used to be Neville’s ‘must read’

whitsundays to great keppel island

By | October 19, 2019

We dropped Tim at Hamilton Island last Sunday with the northerlies having just arrived so it was time to go south! No time to wash the three sets of bedding and towels, and no time to provision. I am very grateful for the IGA on Hamilton Island at least,

our week with Tim … hardy lagoon

By | October 14, 2019

After a few days at Bait Reef we then entered Hardy Lagoon.  Hardy Lagoon is a large lagoon and it is a little tricky to enter.  There is a very narrow entrance and its recommended to only enter close to or at high tide, when the water has stabilised. We

our week with Tim … bait reef

By | October 12, 2019

Soooo … we were left with Tim (and his drone)! We had another week with our son on board and we struck gold … an outer reef window!  Could not have been better timing.  We dropped (a sad) Kaycee at Hamilton Island airport, picked up a few necessities, refuelled and we were on our way.… Read More »

family time – part two

By | October 6, 2019

Damn … got the layout wrong!  Thats what happens when you are chasing internet … here’s Take Two! (Ignore the last email post.) Yes, it was busy on board with six of us!  But a special time too.  We enjoyed watching the Tigers winning the GF while at Hamilton Island and those that didn’t, they… Read More »

whitsundays snorkeling

By | October 2, 2019

Here’s a few pics from a few snorkels around the Whitsundays during the last few weeks … Butterfly Bay, Chalkies Beach, Waite Bay and Langford Reef.  I’m really looking forward to some calmer days out in the water!  Getting buffeted around by

family time … part one

By | September 28, 2019

Now for a different experience on The Bossa … family visits … and with partners. We’ve often had Tim and Abbey join us here in the Whitsundays, usually at different times, but this is a first with each having their

lodestone reef

By | September 8, 2019

I wonder if there’s a “five-year rule” on boats?? Bossa Nova turned five last November (how time flies!).  We had already replaced our VHF hand-held radio a few months back, then, not long after we officially turned south just recently (which means this season is half over 🙁 ), our toilet holding-tank pump stopped working, our… Read More »

beaver reef

By | August 31, 2019

Finally, after some false starts, we got to the outer reef. We have several waypoints for reefs off Orpheus and Dunk Islands so we have been keen to explore them.  But like all outer reef ventures, it’s the weather, particularly the wind and tide, that guide our decisions. Beaver Reef was our first reef

hinchinbrook magic

By | August 23, 2019

According to our Alan Lucas ‘bible’ the Hinchinbrook Channel “is the most scenic, calm waterway on the east coast of Australia”. We like it! We were fortunate enough to see quite a lot of whale activity on the way in to the Hinchinbrook Channel.  A pod of five or six whales kept us entertained but… Read More »

sexy or sinister?

By | August 21, 2019

Sexy or sinister … I have stolen this title from a friend! I am talking about clams. We have just visited Orpheus Island after a stopover at Townsville and the ever popular yachtie haunt at Horseshoe Bay on Maggie (Magnetic Island). Orpheus Island has a Research Station in Pioneer Bay. Threatened with extinction many years… Read More »

clams and clownfish

By | August 12, 2019

A reef weather window at last! Bait Reef and maybe the Hardy Reef lagoon were our destinations. Unfortunately, Bait Reef was everyone’s destination. As we approached Bait Reef it was apparent we would be travelling further on to Hardy Reef as the 5 moorings were already occupied, with another 5 boats anchored. Busy! Bait Reef… Read More »

whitsunday wandering

By | August 5, 2019

We are currently sitting out a few days of ordinary weather with strong winds, showers and cooler days, in Cid Harbour. Time to catch up on my blog, watch a film, read, clean and cook. Fortunately, we are getting some intermittent phone signal, thus internet, so it’s not too bad. But we are a tad… Read More »

whitehaven beach

By | August 3, 2019

With the wish to be in phone contact with home and our friends on ET, we decided we would only venture a short distance to Whitehaven Beach.  We have two ‘must do’s’ when we visit the Whitsundays … Whitehaven Beach and Hill Inlet. Our friends on Chances and Vivacious were at Whitehaven and had been… Read More »

family and friends

By | August 1, 2019

This is one of the more difficult posts I’ve written. When we return to The Bossa each year we leave our family and friends behind for six months.  We’ve always felt ‘connected’ though, with our mobile phones and the internet. We are only a phone call away we would say.  And then only a flight… Read More »

percy islands

By | July 22, 2019

After our extended marina time in Keppel Bay we were ready to ‘escape’.  The strong winds and big seas had eased and the Shoalwater Bay military training zone had reopened which was quite timely. We had no wind!  One extreme to the other. After two days of motoring we revisited South Percy Island for a… Read More »

we gotta get out of this place!

By | July 6, 2019

We have been in the Keppel Bay Marina now for two weeks.  We originally came in for birthday celebrations and the need for a VHF radio repair.  We’ve been here ever since! After enjoying a fantastic run of beautiful weather from Boatworks to Great Keppel Island, we are now waiting for strong winds and BIG swells… Read More »

great keppel island

By | June 26, 2019

We had a great sail from Heron Island to Great Keppel Island. Flat water and a steady 10-15 knot breeze. Dinner was covered for five nights with a spotted mackerel caught on passage and we enjoyed some repeated breaching by a very energetic whale off our starboard transom.  While it was too far away for… Read More »

heron island and wistari reef

By | June 21, 2019

Heron Island has one of the few resorts located on the GBR.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t welcome yachties who might venture out this far, however there’s always a walk around the island on offer as we have access up to the high-water line.  We did visit reception though and they were generously agreeable to us having… Read More »

Fitzroy Reef

By | June 19, 2019

Apologies to my email subscribers, another try … There are so many coral cays out here but the weather and time dictates how many you can visit as sheltered anchorages are a must. If there is an island, they are quite small. We can usually circumnavigate them in under an hour by foot, so it’s the… Read More »

southern great barrier reef

By | June 18, 2019

It’s so wonderful to be back in the water! A warm and calm patch of weather over the last week has meant I’ve unexpectedly been able to enjoy my underwater world in the Bunker and Capricorn group of coral cays and islands, in the southern section of our wonderful GBR. We are now back in… Read More »

Wide Bay Bar

By | June 6, 2019

Woohoo, our 2019 east coast journey begins! After we left The Boatworks we caught our breath with a few nights in the Broadwater, familiarizing ourselves with our ‘second home’. Living between two homes involves some clumsy moments remembering just where things are. Of course, on The Bossa, it’s a tad more important as many things… Read More »

Here We Go Again!

By | May 30, 2019

I think we left Melbourne at the right time!  Winter has well and truly set in now with wind, rain, hail and even snow. And it’s COLD downsouth!!  Sunshine and 25 degrees up here. We are now on the water enjoying a rest … and the sunshine!As per the previous four years, we left The Bossa… Read More »

It’s all over now … take two!

By | November 9, 2018

Take two!  I’m trying to improve on my layout for you email subscribers. This is what your post update should have looked like … It’s that time of the year again … when we swap ‘homes’.  Our 2018 sailing season has come to an end. We have arrived back at Boatworks and packed our boat… Read More »

It’s all over now …

By | November 9, 2018

Take two!  I’m trying to improve on my layout for you email subscribers. This is what your post update should have looked like … It’s that time of the year again … when we swap ‘homes’.  Our 2018 sailing season has come to an end. We have arrived back at Boatworks and packed our boat… Read More »

5 Years Today!

By | November 3, 2018

It was on this day 5 years ago, when our Bossa Nova slowly glided down our driveway, behind a monstrous truck. It was such a memorable day! After three years of blood, sweat and tears building our Fusion 40, our baby was finally leaving our paddock.  A big truck entered our work yard, backed under… Read More »

Lady Musgrave Island

By | November 1, 2018

Lady Musgrave Island is probably the most well known coral cay in the Southern Great Barrier Reef.  Day tour boats visit from Bundaberg and it’s a popular stopover anchorage for yachties on the way north and south.  It’s approx’ 35 nautical miles from Pancake Creek, south of Gladstone. We had visited Lady Musgrave a few… Read More »

Fitzroy Reef … day two!

By | October 31, 2018

We loved Fitzroy Reef.  The lagoon has a white sandy bottom, such clear water and so much reef to explore.  I had snorkeled every day for a week now I think. Was I snorkeled out yet? Nearly. If Heron Island was all about big fish, Fitzroy was about the little fish. After a long 2-hour… Read More »

Fitzroy Reef … loved it!

By | October 30, 2018

Entering the Fitzroy Reef lagoon entrance on dead low tide made it quite spectacular. Once inside, it was a glass-out! Not a breath of wind.  Absolute perfect outer reef weather … whoopee! After a 3-hour motor on flat oily water from Heron Island, we followed Take It Easy through the somewhat narrow Fitzroy lagoon entrance, with both… Read More »

Heron Island and Wistari Reef

By | October 28, 2018

After a calm night at anchor at North West Island we woke to glassy water and a blue sky. It was a short motor hop to Heron Island and Wistari Reef. Fortunately, the two moorings were free so with TIE and The Bossa securely attached, it was snorkel time, once again taking advantage of the midday… Read More »

first stop … North West Island

By | October 27, 2018

We left Great Keppel Island at day break (5 am) and arrived at North West Island at lunchtime, after 7 hours of motoring (remember, we didn’t want wind). An uneventful 43 nautical mile trip, our longest passage, until we leave Lady Musgrave Island at the end of our Southern Reef adventure. North West Island is a large… Read More »

Southern Great Barrier Reef

By | October 26, 2018

In my last post I mentioned we were heading out to sea. We have just spent the last seven days in the Southern section of the Great Barrier Reef, at the Capricorn and Bunker Groups of islands. Why haven’t we visited here before??!! I suppose Lady Musgrave Island counts, but I also think perhaps we are… Read More »

my underwater world … part two

By | October 20, 2018

I hope I haven’t bored my readers with this endless collection of underwater snaps yet?! We are venturing out to the southern section of the Great Barrier Reef very early this morning.  Maybe more underwater photos that even “gazump” this collection? There will be no phone reception out there so my next post will be… Read More »

my underwater world … part one

By | October 19, 2018

Snorkeling has become my number one activity when I’m on The Bossa.  I’ve mentioned how disappointing and sad the state of the Great Barrier Reef is around the Whitsundays.  The silt and algae, along with the damaged coral, will be having a big impact on the tourism there.  However, back south, here at GKI, it… Read More »

Great Keppel Island

By | October 19, 2018

Each morning we get up in anticipation.  The weather forecast! We are planning to hop down the coral cays of the Southern Great Barrier Reef with Take It Easy. We need light winds, clear sunny skies, neap tides, a low tide in the middle of the day and a favourable wind direction to get us… Read More »

Southward Bound!

By | October 13, 2018

We have arrived at Great Keppel Island (GKI). The northerlies finally arrived so several yachts departed the Whitsundays around the same time, all southward bound.  I counted 30+ yachts in a few of our anchorages. It is approx. 200 nm from the Whitsundays to GKI so its usually a 4-day passage.  We had a brilliant weather… Read More »

one more time …

By | October 12, 2018

We hopped down south to Plantation Bay, Lindeman Island. An unexpected treat was another ‘last snorkel’.  Little did I know I would finally see some Anemonefish. Here’s a few pics …

2018 … “cruising blues”

By | October 3, 2018

Friends (non-boating ones) often ask … “what do we do?” We sail, we fish, we read, we walk, we talk and we just love the cruising life.  But, it’s the people we meet along the way that have the biggest impact on our cruising life. Lasting friendships are formed. We are beginning our southern journey… Read More »

my last snorkel here …

By | October 3, 2018

My last snorkel in the Whitsundays! While the reef here is not what it used to be, there’s still plenty to see under the water.  While the bottom is covered with a layer of brown murky sediment and the water somewhat cloudy, seeing the bright fish life and the new corals, is still my favourite… Read More »

the highs and the lows

By | September 23, 2018

It has been a rollercoaster ride over the last few weeks here in the Whitsundays. There are a few ‘safe havens’ in these waters.  When the wind blows too hard, we yachties look for shelter (contrary to what some think … we don’t like strong wind either). Nara, Macona and Gulnare Inlets, along with Cid… Read More »

Back in the water …

By | September 18, 2018

It’s so good to be back in the water. However to date, I’ve only managed to get to the fringing reef around the islands.  The outer reef is hopefully not too far away … we are waiting on a ‘weather window’! The popular Whitsundays snorkeling spots here have been the likes of Blue Pearl Bay,… Read More »

A Must Do!

By | September 4, 2018

Wow … Wow … Wow! We picked a day with a clear sky forecast and then a time with the sun overhead and also low tide. We booked a one-hour Reef and Islands flight out of Airlie Beach.  The day was perfect with little wind and no clouds.  My last experience on a small plane… Read More »

12 days …

By | September 3, 2018

We have just enjoyed 12 days of glorious weather, but more importantly, 12 days of family time with Abbey on board. First stop … Whitehaven.  THE best beach! After many visits to the Whitsundays over the years, on our last visit here in 2016 we actually visited a bay we hadn’t been to before. Waites Bay… Read More »

Back in the Whitsundays!

By | August 20, 2018

It has been a few weeks since my last post.  We are anchored in Gulnare Inlet, near Hamilton Island, ready to collect Abbey tomorrow. We have had such a run of great weather. Clear blue skies, warm and gentle sailing breezes.  We’ve even had super calm days without a breath of wind.  We do treasure… Read More »

the big and the small …

By | August 9, 2018

The big … While we have seen so many whales on our trip north this year, I’m still hoping for that ‘special’ shot of a whale breeching.  We have seen some acrobatics, but way too far away.  We’ve also had whales close, sometimes too close, but they’ve been simply heading north like us. We have… Read More »

Magnetic Magic!

By | August 8, 2018

Did you know … Magnetic Island was named by Captain Cook, whose compass played up when he sailed past in 1770? Visiting Horseshoe Bay on Magnetic Island is a bit like visiting a friend.  Familiar, easy, friendly, secure, pretty and calm (its protected from most wind directions) … a ‘yachties paradise’ Neville would say. It is… Read More »