New Zealand 2018

3829 Nautical Miles

One should always have paper charts. We went one step further, 3D charts ie a globe.

Back in Tassie!

It was a long, but easy ride down from Jervis Bay to Bryan’s Corner on Frecyinet Peninsula.  Seventy-five hours of mostly motor-sailing, through easy seas with light or no winds. 

Hopping Along Currents

From Jervis Bay to Eden, hug the coast to avoid the slight north going current. But from Eden to Tasmania there are eddies begging to be used.

The Last Leg

We’re on our way!  We left Newcastle at about 3pm on Wed., once the SE wind had eased, and motor-sailed through the night.

Rested in Newcastle

Well, we did cross the Tasman back to Aus, albeit arriving in Newcastle, 260nm north of the intended destination of Eden.

Passage to Aus: Day 11 and Arrival!

Just a short blog to say that Rusalka arrived in Newcastle at around 4 pm.  They made very good time yesterday and today with wind off the beam and a favourable current, reaching a maximum of 10.4kt over the ground!  More details tomorrow, but just a note to say all are well and enjoying a well earned whiskey.

Passage to Aus: Day 10

Rusalka spent the night trying to swim upstream, with a strong current (over 3kts) against her.  It made for very slow progress.  All night the winds were strong and Rusalka was pounding and bashing her way into the wind at 6-7kt through the water, but barely 3kt over ground.  It was a very uncomfortable night for all.

Passage to Aus: Day 9

Rusalka is still trudging on towards Newcastle.  While the wind is now favourable, they’ve battled a current of 2kts against them all day and so are only averaging around 4 – 4.5kts.  They are expecting the current to ease in the next few hours and are still hoping to make Newcastle on Saturday.

Passage to Aus: Day 8

This is Alex's report on the events of the last two days:

How was it that we found ourselves in this storm?

Passage to Aus: Day 7, Comments from Alex

It was quite a wild night. The severe weather was a series of events beginning on Monday afternoon and finishing early Tuesday. The effect of storm meant we could not go on our planned course to Eden due to wind and wave strength and direction that persisted afterwards.

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  • Home Again
    Written by

    During the night we heard the odd noise or two outside – maybe a block moving? maybe a few drops of rain?  Nothing to get out of bed and investigate.  In the morning all was revealed. 

    Written on Tuesday, 19 March 2019 13:08
  • Relaxing in Shoal Bay
    Written by

    The weather has been quite benign, with light winds and comfortable temperatures, so we don’t feel in any rush to go home!  We left Wineglass Bay and motored south into Mercury Passage, passing Ile de Phoques, with it’s huge seal colonies. 

    Written on Sunday, 17 March 2019 19:42
  • Banks Strait to Wineglass Bay
    Written by

    We left George Town at the almost civilized hour of 06:50, on the outgoing tide, and enjoyed a 2kt push out of the Tamar.

    Written on Friday, 15 March 2019 16:26
  • Still in the Tamar
    Written by

    We enjoyed our stay at the Tamar Yacht Club, sleeping in and eating out.  I thought I might get a bit of exercise and ride my folding bike (that we’ve been lugging across Bass Strait and back) to the shops to get some cheese to go with the champagne we’d planned to have in the evening. 

    Written on Tuesday, 12 March 2019 04:13
  • Homeward Bound!
    Written by

    We spent a week happily lounging around, visiting family and friends, and playing with our grandson, but with one eye on the weather forecasts.  A 2-3 day window of light winds seemed to be consistently showing for the end of the week, so we gathered up provisions and motored out of of the marina on Thursday morning.

    Written on Saturday, 09 March 2019 16:23
  • Arrival in Hastings, Victoria
    Written by

    The wind at Oberon Bay howled all night at 25 kts, gusting to 30, but we managed a reasonable sleep.  We got up at 5:15 and set off in the dawn light with the intention of stopping at San Remo, on the eastern side of Westernport Bay. 

    Written on Friday, 01 March 2019 17:51
  • Flinders Island to Oberon Bay, Victoria
    Written by

    I was very pleased to see that my anchor drop the previous day had been accurate and we had indeed dug well about 1m from the small sandy spot I’d aimed at.

    Written on Thursday, 28 February 2019 07:15
  • Hobart to Victoria: On to Flinders
    Written by

    Binalong Bay turned out to be a horribly rolly anchorage, with the swell coming in on our quarter and slapping the hull outside our aft cabin.  At midnight we couldn’t take the noise any more and decamped for berths further forward! 

    Written on Saturday, 23 February 2019 17:30
  • Hob to Vic: Maria Island to Binalong Bay
    Written by

    After a windy day and night at anchor in Shoal Bay on Maria Island (with strong wind shifts from the east, south and west), we set off for Wineglass Bay, further up the coast. 

    Written on Thursday, 21 February 2019 17:30
  • Hobart to Victoria: Hole in One
    Written by

    We were enjoying breakfast this morning while the winds blew moderately from the north.  Suddenly the anchor alarm went off and we could see from the track on the chart plotter that we were indeed slowly moving southward.

    Written on Monday, 18 February 2019 18:54
  • Hobart to Victoria: Maria Island
    Written by

    We’ve set off on our trip to Victoria to visit family and friends! I’ll try to post every few days or whenever we get a reasonable phone signal.

    Written on Sunday, 17 February 2019 15:01
  • Australian Wooden Boat Festival 2019
    Written by

    We joined in on the Parade of Sail, along with hundreds of other boats, to welcome the tall ships and other wooden boats to Hobart for the Australian Wooden Boat festival. 

    Written on Sunday, 10 February 2019 14:47
  • Down the Channel
    Written by

    We had been planning a 2 week trip to Port Davey and Bathurst Harbour with our friend Lindsay, but an expired alternator meant a change in plans.  The weather in early January was too good to waste, so we decided that a jaunt closer to home would be enjoyable and more prudent with only a single small working alternator.

    Written on Friday, 25 January 2019 13:58
  • Christmas 2018
    Written by

    After one or two false starts we set off from Kettering on Saturday, the 22nd Dec.  It was a beautiful day and we enjoyed a gentle motor-sail across Storm Bay.

    Written on Friday, 28 December 2018 03:47
  • Greeting the Golden Globe Race
    Written by

    We’ve been following the GGR for over a year on their facebook page and website.  This solo round the world race aims to recreate the conditions of the original GGR in 1968.  There are only two “gates” in the race that the entrants have to sail through – one in the Canary Islands and one just south of Hobart.

    Written on Wednesday, 10 October 2018 16:02
  • Cruising in the Baltic
    Written by

    Warning - this post is a long one! I decided to tell the whole story of our trip to Denmark in one post.

    Written on Wednesday, 10 October 2018 01:55
  • 3829 Nautical Miles
    Written by

    One should always have paper charts. We went one step further, 3D charts ie a globe.

    Written on Sunday, 29 April 2018 23:03
  • Back in Tassie!
    Written by

    It was a long, but easy ride down from Jervis Bay to Bryan’s Corner on Frecyinet Peninsula.  Seventy-five hours of mostly motor-sailing, through easy seas with light or no winds. 

    Written on Tuesday, 24 April 2018 19:20
  • Hopping Along Currents
    Written by

    From Jervis Bay to Eden, hug the coast to avoid the slight north going current. But from Eden to Tasmania there are eddies begging to be used.

    Written on Saturday, 21 April 2018 04:31
  • The Last Leg
    Written by

    We’re on our way!  We left Newcastle at about 3pm on Wed., once the SE wind had eased, and motor-sailed through the night.

    Written on Friday, 20 April 2018 13:53
  • Rested in Newcastle
    Written by

    Well, we did cross the Tasman back to Aus, albeit arriving in Newcastle, 260nm north of the intended destination of Eden.

    Written on Tuesday, 17 April 2018 03:18
  • Passage to Aus: Day 11 and Arrival!
    Written by

    Just a short blog to say that Rusalka arrived in Newcastle at around 4 pm.  They made very good time yesterday and today with wind off the beam and a favourable current, reaching a maximum of 10.4kt over the ground!  More details tomorrow, but just a note to say all are well and enjoying a well earned whiskey.

    Written on Saturday, 14 April 2018 12:06
  • Passage to Aus: Day 10
    Written by

    Rusalka spent the night trying to swim upstream, with a strong current (over 3kts) against her.  It made for very slow progress.  All night the winds were strong and Rusalka was pounding and bashing her way into the wind at 6-7kt through the water, but barely 3kt over ground.  It was a very uncomfortable night for all.

    Written on Friday, 13 April 2018 12:34
  • Passage to Aus: Day 9
    Written by

    Rusalka is still trudging on towards Newcastle.  While the wind is now favourable, they’ve battled a current of 2kts against them all day and so are only averaging around 4 – 4.5kts.  They are expecting the current to ease in the next few hours and are still hoping to make Newcastle on Saturday.

    Written on Thursday, 12 April 2018 15:22
  • Passage to Aus: Day 8
    Written by

    This is Alex's report on the events of the last two days:

    How was it that we found ourselves in this storm?

    Written on Wednesday, 11 April 2018 12:44
  • Passage to Aus: Day 7, Comments from Alex
    Written by

    It was quite a wild night. The severe weather was a series of events beginning on Monday afternoon and finishing early Tuesday. The effect of storm meant we could not go on our planned course to Eden due to wind and wave strength and direction that persisted afterwards.

    Written on Wednesday, 11 April 2018 12:24
  • Passage to Aus: Day 7
    Written by

    It wasn’t a very nice 24hrs for the crew of Rusalka.  Yesterday afternoon they were punching into 2.5-3m seas, making slow progress SW into 20-25kt WNW winds.  About 6pm NZ time, while having mushroom barley soup for dinner, they crossed the magical “halfway” mark of 162.05E (halfway between Nelson and Eden).

    Written on Tuesday, 10 April 2018 13:00
  • Passage to Aus: Day 6
    Written by

    Alex sent in the text for today's blog. They're nearing the halfway mark and getting ready for tonight's bad weather.

    Written on Monday, 09 April 2018 11:33
  • Passage to Aus: Day 5
    Written by

    Storm Preparations: As Rusalka charges NW trying to get out of the way of the bad weather to come on Mon/Tues, Alex and crew are doing a few things to prepare for the wind and waves. 

    Written on Sunday, 08 April 2018 15:59
  • Passage to Aus: Day 4
    Written by

    The topic of the messages that went back and forth with Rusalka today was “Weather”! 

    Written on Saturday, 07 April 2018 18:55
  • Passage to Aus: Day 3
    Written by

    Last night was still, with glassy seas. This morning there was a very slight low swell and grey skies. 

    Written on Friday, 06 April 2018 13:13
  • Passage to Aus: Day 2
    Written by

    Here’s today’s report from Alex, with a few pictures:

    Written on Thursday, 05 April 2018 13:35
  • Passage to Aus: Day 1-2
    Written by

    No pictures today, I'm afraid!  Just a quick update from Alex.  Rusalka's course on Day 1 was NNE across Tasman Bay and Cook Strait, with wind more or less on the beam.  A pod of dolphins escorted the boat out of Nelson - always a good omen! 

    Written on Wednesday, 04 April 2018 15:19
  • Setting off for Australia
    Written by

    I (Jackie) took the easy way home, by plane, on Easter Sunday.  Alex, David and Anne continued to prepare the boat and wait for the right weather to leave. 

    Written on Tuesday, 03 April 2018 11:34
  • Getting ready to go
    Written by

    Summer’s gone and it’s time to head back to Tassie.  Alex has been checking the Predictwind forecasts daily and it’s starting to look like there will be windows available to get to Australia – at least somewhere in NSW, if not directly to Hobart, in the next week or so. 

    Written on Monday, 26 March 2018 17:03
  • Road Trip
    Written by

    Since we had decided not to take Rusalka further afield than Marlborough Sounds, we hired a car to do a short road trip to explore the South Island further. 

    Written on Tuesday, 20 March 2018 19:39
  • One last trip to Abel Tasman Park
    Written by

    We spent the better part of a week in Nelson, doing chores and chasing up leads for crew for the return journey, so we decided that we deserved a couple of days of play in Abel Tasman National Park. 

    Written on Sunday, 11 March 2018 17:08
  • A little rain must fall...
    Written by

    We woke up in Muzz’s Cove on Monday morning to heavy rain and low visibility, but decided to move on to another bay in Pelorus Sound. 

    Written on Saturday, 03 March 2018 13:35
  • On to Pelorus Sound
    Written by

    As always, the weather guides our plans. With a forecast of two calm days before a Northwesterly gale we decided to leave beautiful Queen Charlotte Sound and head back around Cape Jackson to visit Pelorus Sound. 

    Written on Sunday, 25 February 2018 13:10
  • Cyclone Gita fails to impress
    Written by

    We booked the ferry to Wellington for Sunday for a short getaway, expecting to return on Wednesday.  Cyclone Gita was coming, but it was uncertain when, where or how hard it would hit NZ. 

    Written on Wednesday, 21 February 2018 18:56
  • More of Queen Charlotte Sound
    Written by

    After a couple of rainy days we were getting itchy feet and decided to spend a few more days looking around the inner QCS area. 

    Written on Thursday, 15 February 2018 18:13
  • Cruising Queen Charlotte Sound
    Written by

    Monday was a windy day with strong NW’s, but we decided to head up Endeavour Inlet to Furneaux Lodge.  Some of the resorts here have moorings that they allow visitors to use for free – with the expectation that you’ll have a coffee or meal in their restaurant.  They will even ferry you to and from your boat in their dinghy. 

    Written on Sunday, 11 February 2018 13:25
  • Nelson to Marlborough Sounds
    Written by

    After the big blow we spent Friday getting ready for a week of cruising – food shopping, fueling the boat, having one last restaurant meal.  We left Nelson on Saturday, in light winds heading for the notorious French Pass, that would let us slip under d’Urville Island and avoid some exposure to Cook Strait. 

    Written on Monday, 05 February 2018 10:36
  • When bad weather hits...
    Written by

    Extra-tropical cyclone Fehi was heading our way and had been forecast to hit NZ several days in advance.  We came back from our mini-trip to the Abel Tasman NP and tied ourselves securely into our berth to await the storm.

    Written on Friday, 02 February 2018 16:21
  • Passage to NZ - The Videos
    Written by

    A few videos of the relaxing passage

    Written on Wednesday, 31 January 2018 21:22
  • Abel Tasman National Park
    Written by

    Our original plan was to head off towards the Marlborough Sounds as soon as we were all settled on the boat, but there was an “extra-tropical cyclone” forecast for Thursday which sounded pretty nasty so we decided to be in the Nelson marina when that hit. 

    Written on Wednesday, 31 January 2018 16:29
  • Passage to NZ - The Numbers
    Written by

    For those interested in how much fuel we used, and so on, here are The Numbers.

    Written on Wednesday, 31 January 2018 00:42
  • Finally in here, in Nelson
    Written by

    Showers, beer, whisky, laundry, shopping, no watches.... we have arrived

    Written on Saturday, 27 January 2018 04:04
  • But wait, there's more...
    Written by

    This is just a placeholder.  Judy B. and I (Jackie) are flying over to Nelson on Saturday to join Rusalka and to sail in the Marlborough Sounds.  We might not post for a few days while we get ourselves organised and provisioned, but then we'll share our pictures and stories on this blog site.  So keep watching.

    Written on Friday, 26 January 2018 17:44
  • They've arrived!
    Written by

    I've had a phone call from Alex.  It looks like they arrived early this morning and cleared customs around 10:30am NZ time.  The photo is from Andrew Boon. I'll update when I hear more.

    Written on Friday, 26 January 2018 13:55
  • Passage to NZ: Day 9 - All in one day...
    Written by

    All in one day...

    Written on Thursday, 25 January 2018 23:58
  • I can see Rusalka!
    Written by

    News flash! Rusalka can be seen passing Farewell Spit from the lighthouse webcam (just a dot on the left hand of the picture at 7:49pm): http://www.takeabreak.co.nz/webcams/126/farewell_spit_webcam

    Written on Thursday, 25 January 2018 17:08
  • Passage to NZ: Day 9 - update
    Written by

    Well, the fine weather and seas have given way to give a commonly heard of introduction to NZ. What started as a beautiful early morning, sailing gracefully, by late morning we found ourselves in the midst of a mild belting.

    Written on Thursday, 25 January 2018 15:20
  • Passage to NZ: Day 8 - Position report
    Written by

    1230 Wednesday 24 January 2018

    We are closing in on our distination. We will arrive on Friday 26 Jan. Customs has been advised of ETA 1400 on 26 Jan.

    Written on Wednesday, 24 January 2018 13:40
  • Passage to NZ: Day 8
    Written by

    Morning Wednesday 24 January 2018 (Position report to follow this afternoon)

    OFF WATCH

    So what do we do when we're off-watch? Well, it's hard to say, but one thing is certain, it is not boring. It's been a very good passage so far....

    Written on Wednesday, 24 January 2018 11:53
  • Passage to NZ: Day 7
    Written by

    Sorry, no pictures from Alex today, but here is today's report from Rusalka:

    Written on Tuesday, 23 January 2018 14:43
  • Passage to NZ: Day 6
    Written by

    Not much to report from Rusalka today. More light winds and calm seas. They finally turned the engine off again at 1pm today and are doing 6kt under full main and genoa.

    Written on Monday, 22 January 2018 14:30
  • Passage to NZ: Day 5 - addendum
    Written by

    ADDENDUM: 17:50 21 Jan. Ten minutes ago, just as the spaghetti bolognese was being served, we passed the halfway mark!!!

    Written on Sunday, 21 January 2018 17:57
  • Passage to NZ: Day 4
    Written by

    From Rusalka:

    Morning, 20 Jan. 2018. 

    Settled into the routine of 3hour watches. All together for the main meal at about 6pm AEDT.

    Written on Saturday, 20 January 2018 11:51
  • Passage to NZ: Days 2-3
    Written by

    9am Fri. 19 Jan: Quite bumpy overnight. Winds 24-28kts, gusting into 30's as predicted. Seas mainly wind waves, not too bad, occasionally nasty.  Water in cockpit every now and then gets down below! 

    Written on Friday, 19 January 2018 09:25
  • Passage to NZ: Day 1 - addendum
    Written by

    Rusalka sailed on today, passing Tasman Island around midday in calm conditions.

    Written on Wednesday, 17 January 2018 11:03
  • And they're off!!
    Written by

    The weather gods (Predictwind and MetBob) decided that there would be a good window to leave from this evening onward, so Alex and Bill brought the boat up to town from Kettering this morning, stopping to fuel up at the RYCT dock and to raise the CYCT burgee!

    Written on Tuesday, 16 January 2018 16:34
  • Waiting for weather...
    Written by

    Alex and crew are ready to go! The boat is ready, passage planning is done and documentation is in order.  Provisions are stowed and meals are cooked, frozen, and waiting to be loaded on board.  But the weather is refusing to come to the party! 

    Written on Tuesday, 09 January 2018 22:18
  • New Year's Eve
    Written by

    We'd made a long-standing promise to our friend Pam to watch the Hobart fireworks from the water with her nephew and his wife who are visiting from the US. 

    Written on Monday, 01 January 2018 00:34
  • Christmas Eve
    Written by

    Christmas Eve dinner on Rusalka in Norfolk Bay.  Quail in herb, champagne, and cream sauce with veggies and beetroot salad.  And dessert!!

    Written on Sunday, 24 December 2017 08:55
  • Pre-Christmas getaway - “Shakedown” cruise
    Written by

    After many weeks of maintenance chores and getting ready for summer cruising, we finally got away for a few days to make sure everything is still working and to remind ourselves how to sail! 

    Written on Sunday, 24 December 2017 01:21
  • More preparations
    Written by

    Servicing continues. It's time for a new prop shaft seal after perhaps 7 years life of the old one

    Written on Friday, 24 November 2017 04:20
  • Back in Kettering
    Written by

    Back in Kettering after a relaxed 4 1/2 motor and sail from Kermandie.

    Written on Wednesday, 22 November 2017 03:34
  • Preparation
    Written by

    Rusalka has been with Dean Marks in Kermandie undergoing annual antifouling and other tasks in preparation for the planned trip in January. After 20 days at Kermandie, today we brought Rusalka back to Kettering.

    Written on Monday, 20 November 2017 07:47
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