The waterfall at the southern end of the beach traced cool fingers through the boulders, catching the light of the afternoon and reflecting glimmers of sky.
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South Passage Daily Report

CLIENT: GPV Adult Sail & Walk

VOYAGE NUMBER:  20240601

FROM: Townsville To: Townsville

DATE: 5 June 2024

POSITION: North East Bay, Palm Is

REPORT: Red Watch

In the calm of the night, Helen popped down to fetch Chris… something had caught her attention…

When Philip and I started the watch, I said “look at this, calm ocean, no wind, why are we doing these watches when we could be in bed?”

But then, about 15 mins into the watch, I checked the nav screen and the anchor was at 65m. The skipper’s orders were to report anything over 50m, so I went to get Chris, and by the time we’d checked, it was at 70m and we were being pushed quickly by the current. Chris started the motor, and it became obvious that we needed to pull up the anchor and start over. People came up and helped to ensure that the yacht didn’t hit anything, and we reset the anchor.

Philip flung his shirt off and plunged down into the chain locker. Andrew was hosing the chain to remove the mud, but the current beneath the surface was so strong it was washing the mud off on the way up. We moved the ship and dropped the anchor again. There was no clear reason why the anchor had dragged, so we have hypothesized that the situation may have arisen from converging currents. With the anchor set, and Philip safely back in his pyjamas, we all tucked in for the night. Before dawn, Red Watch rose to a symphony of snoring and were delighted to discover that we hadn’t moved at all.

We set off in the morning light and traced our way along all 5.76 km of the Lucinda Jetty, then headed out for tacking practice. We hauled and eased and belayed, and hauled and eased and belayed, and hauled and eased and belayed again. We also kept watch and took the helm. After our zig-zag adventures, we came to rest at Dthoorakool Bay, the North East Bay of Great Palm Island.

Before we could enjoy a swim and a walk though, we had to rehome Bruce “Flush” Coroma. Bruce the Lizard had stowed away in the toilet bowl, but we felt he’d be much happier on Great Palm Island, so he was transported carefully in a container and released onto the island.

Freed from our wildlife carer responsibilities, we explored the shore and discovered waterfalls at either end of the beach. The waterfall at the southern end of the beach traced cool fingers through the boulders, catching the light of the afternoon and reflecting glimmers of sky. The waterfall at the northern end spilled out onto the beach.

We swam in warm waters, shifting through azure, teal, turquoise, and aquamarine, returning to the ship for a bout of clove hitching and shared stir-fry vegetables against a marmalade sky.

Now, in the dark of the main saloon, negotiations have concluded regarding watch times and extra sleep, and we’re all off to bed.

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