Wednesday, July 30, 2003

Trade winds greet traditional sailors
Sunday saw a superb fleet of traditional boats sail a course from Airlie around Langford Reef and return. We sailed in the finest trade wind conditions the Whitsundays can provide, the sun making up for the salt spray across the decks in the boisterous seas.
The Derwent Hunter Perpetual Trophy was awarded to the newest addition to the fleet of traditional sailing ships; the beautiful 1961 built Alden ketch 'Enid' and proud owner Leo Rodriguez.
Not a race, but a regatta and let the trophy also show that in the gaffer fleet Providence V was really pushed by her captain and crew to pip Windjammer at the finish.
Derwent Hunter took advantage of the fresh trades and waterline length to stay ahead of Atlanta. Pearling lugger Ise Pearl and the Atkins design gaff cutter Pequot sailed one tack from Langford Island to the finish in Pioneer Bay averaging five and a half knots to weather. Southern Cross attended from Bowen and visitor Centurion peeled off at Stonehaven for a leisurely lunch.
Everyone agreed it was a fantastic day on the water. Over a couple of rums afterward, it was thought that this kind of traditional theme, timber, tallship and gaffer fleet should meet again, perhaps as part of the Rotary Boat Show next June. It would show visitors and sailors alike that there was life before plastic boats and that it still takes sailors of steel to sail timber ships with traditional rigs. Beware the gaffers off the wind. Aargh!
Special thanks to Peter and Jill on Pequot (pronounce pea-coy) from your Waterfront writer for the best day on the water.

'Ranges to the Reef'
Saying they want to personalise the heart of tropical Queensland, Personalised Plates Queensland (PPQ) is set to develop their newest regional plate with a visit to the region this week.
When designing a personalised plate for a regional area, PPQ say their primary focus is on capturing the essence of regional areas by giving residents a say on what theme should be chosen and how the region should be represented.
"We recognise that regional Queensland is a vital part of the Queensland community and therefore love creating personalised plates for the area. It is a great way to develop and foster a sense of identity and community for regional areas," said PPQ General Manager Ian Andrew.
PPQ have launched personalised plates in a number of regional areas and are keen to consult the locals as to how they feel the region's life style and essence can best be depicted on a plate.
ABC Radio Tropical North gave residents the opportunity to have their say about the plate slogan, called a sash, during Anne O'Keefe's breakfast program this week.
Here's some of the entries that ABC Tropical North listeners came up with in the slogan competition: Yvonne, who was busy with three slogans entered with 'Sailing through Heaven' that was 'right up there'.
Listener Olga thought 'A world of Wonder' would get people thinking, while Tex was obviously thinking about his car with 'Paradise on Wheels'.
Graham was thinking about the coastal interface with 'Blue meets green', with Mark going for 'Islands in the Sun,' which would also make a good song title.
The winner was Lorraine with 'Ranges to the Reef' who will be the proud owner of a set of Whitsunday Personalised Plates when they're released early next year, although not necessarily with her slogan.
"Lorraine is from Mt Hector Station, up on the Hinterland - the last property in the Whitsunday Shire before the border with Mackay" said ABC Tropical North breakfast presenter Anne O'keefe. "So, it's appropriate that Lorraine won with a slogan that represents the whole region,"

Pool for My Baby

The tycoon bought a luxury yacht for his only daughter upon her graduation.
Large and white, the yacht that is, it even had an onboard pool. Mr Moneybags brought the daughter aboard for a tour of the boat.
Around the pool were shirtless ship construction workers finishing up some painting.
The daughter clasped her hands and screeched, "Oh, daddy it's a wonderful pool and you've even stocked it for me!"

Fishing winter reds
"The winter reds have turned up right on time. Recent high winds have made fishing difficult but when we have been able to get to the reef it has fired. The reef fishing scene is great with both red emperor and sweetlip on the chew. The lippers are all full of eggs and their stomachs are full of anything including coral. This means they are very hungry due to their spawning and will feed on almost anything."
"The Spanish Mackerel have gone a little quiet as they do during July but will be back on the bite on the first quarter moon in August. Sailfish and Marlin should be showing their bills any day now and with the amount of baitfish north of Hayman Island, we are in for a big season."
"Speaking of the grounds north of Hayman it is one of the areas that GBRMPA want to close, so don't forget to put in a submission objection to this area and Bait reef being closed to fishermen."
Tight Lines, Capt Ken on Marlin Blue

Green flash figured
A green flash is sometimes seen just as the sun sets or rises. This occurs because green light is bent most strongly by the atmosphere. So the green is seen before other colours at sunrise, and after the other colours have vanished at sunset.

Mackay Harbour buoy
Mariners are advised that an unlit yellow marker buoy has been established in the position of (Chart Datum WGS 84) Latitude 21°07.025'S, Longitude 149°13.8'E off the southern wall of the marina off Mackay Harbour. Charts affected: AUS 249, 250, 823

Fair winds to Ye!
Cap'n Dan

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Aussies take Admiral's Cup

Australian sailors have broken a 24-year drought by taking the Admiral's Cup
in a closely sailed series. The coveted international series went to the
line with the Aussie team trailing the Spanish crews before the final race.
Two owners with no previous Admiral's Cup experience put the winning team
from the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club, Sydney, together. Bob Oatley, the
owner of Wild Oats, is one of Australia's foremost wine industry figures,
with a long sailing history, but mostly on the domestic circuit. Businessman
Colin O'Neil chartered Aftershock, a Rodman 42, and named it after his boat
in Australia. This was his first foray into international competition.
The series of nine races was pretty much a two horse race from the start
between the Aussies and the Spanish team, which included the King of Spain.
The Spanish went into the final race with a one-point lead.
Typical Aussie humour included; 'The convicts have beaten the King!' said
Mark Richards, helmsman of Wild Oats.
Australia won the Admirals Cup in 1967 with Mercedes III, Balandra and
Caprice of Huon and again in 1979 with Police Car, Impetuous and Ragamuffin,
but that wasn't a year for celebration due to the Fastnet tragedy.

Your position?
The would-be rescue ship tuned in to a faint distress signal from a sinking
pleasure craft. "What is your position?
Repeat, what is your position?" shouted the radio operator into the
Finally a faint reply crackled over the static, "I'm executive vice
president of First Global Bank - Please hurry!"

Multihull Rendezvous
"Don't miss this highlight of the Whitsunday sailing calendar..." say
organisers of the Multihull Rendezvous.
"Join a varied fleet of multi's from racers to cruising liveaboards for five
days of traditional Rendezvous revelry ... Sensational daily racing topped
with the usual doses of decent partying! This year sees the Whitsunday
Sailing Club and Abel Point Yacht Clubs joining forces to make 2003 the best
yet - competitive sailing in Australia's premier cruising grounds with
enjoyable celebrations daily at two of the best venues in Queensland - how
could it not be a Rendezvous to Remember? "If you're 'multihulled' in
Airlie in August - See ya there!" organisers said.
The Notice Of Race is available from WSC, Abel Point Yacht Club, and
Emultihulls. Three divisions will compete in racing, performance cruising
and cruising/liveaboard.
The briefing will be held on Friday 15th August at Abel Point Yacht Club
with the presentation on Wednesday 20th at the Whitsunday Sailing Club
More Info? Ring Lockie Wilson - 0405-612-233

The 'new' cruising cup

Join the fleet in this inaugural event for monohulls, created to complement
the traditional multihull Rendezvous - after all - why should they have all
the fun?? Enjoy a weekend of competitive sailing, along with a "play day"
on Monday 18th...including the Cock of the Bay Sabot Championship and relax
with a few beers and snags at the BBQ. The Inaugural Whitsunday Cruising Cup
is the beginning of an Airlie tradition with a perpetual Trophy featured and
a future sure to see the event carved forever into the Whitsunday Sailing

Name new 'brand'

The Australian Yachting Federation, now to be known as Yachting Australia,
launched a new brand that will exist to create a bond between governing
bodies and clubs and form a common visual link for all aspects of yachting.

Did you hear about the new pirate film? It's rated Aarrrgh!

Tropical shirts
"We are looking forward to having fun with the boat in one of the best
places in Australia, at one of the best regattas, where the weather is
usually sensational. Not much wrong with that picture" said Sandringham
Yacht Club Vice Commodore Coombs.
Sandringham Yacht Club from Victoria has a 12-boat contingent competing at
Hog's Breath Race Week in all divisions. Vice Commodore Phil Coombs will be
racing No Fearr at this year's regatta. Coombs also raced aboard No Fearr in
this year's Melbourne to Osaka yacht race.
This year's Hog's Breath Race Week has competitors travelling from all parts
of Australia to compete in the annual regatta on Pioneer Bay. Australian
boats and crew from every state and territory are making the trip as well as
international boats from New Zealand and Hong Kong.
Commenting on the fact that the Tropical Shirt Regatta will resemble a
Sandringham Yacht Club AGM, Coombs went on to say "Hog's Breath Race Week is
very popular with Sandringham Yacht Club people, as it gives us the chance
to race at an affordable regatta in the Whitsunday's and to enjoy the
hospitality of Airlie Beach township".
This year's Hog's Breath Race Week will be the first time that three of the
Volvo 60's now in Australia will be on Whitsunday waters together. Andrew
Short Marine's djuice sponsored by Club Marine announced that they would be
racing along side Indec and Magnavox 2UE at Hog's Breath Race Week.
" We are looking forward to the racing at Hog's Breath Race Week with the
two other Volvo 60's and seeing how we match on the Pioneer Bay and Island
courses," said Andrew Short.
The racing up north will be close with all three boats having raced around
the world in the last Volvo Ocean and Whitbread races. The Volvo 60's will
race in the Big Boat division at Hog's Breath Race Week before going across
to the Hahn Premium Hamilton Island Race Week.
The new Abel Point Marina at Airlie Beach will be accommodating the entire
fleet this year allowing the crews easy access to the extensive post-race
entertainment in Airlie Beach.
"Seeing three Volvo 60's racing on Pioneer Bay at Hog's Breath Race Week is
a wonderful boost to our event. Apart from the spectacle they will provide,
all three teams are led by great Australian sailing identities. We look
forward to hosting the growing Volvo 60 fleet at Airlie Beach," said Regatta
Director Andrew Palfrey.

Not enough

"Just living is not enough," said the Butterfly. "One must have sunshine,
freedom, and a little flower."
Hans Christian Anderson

Fair winds to Ye!
Cap'n Dan

Friday, July 18, 2003

Race Weeks looming on horizon for Whitsunday
Sailors are gearing up for a busy sailing season in the Whitsundays. The trade winds have been pumping and organisers have been working hard to make this sailing season the best yet.
The sailors and more and more their families, have been coming up the coast for the last twenty years to our sailing playground paradise.
That's right. Hamilton Island has been hosting the annual Race Week for twenty years and this year will see another fabulous fleet of racers enjoying the delights of the Whitsundays.
"If you speak to anyone who has competed at Race Week at Hamilton Island - they'll tell you of the perfect balance between sailing and socialising and the 20th anniversary of the event is ensuring that both categories are world-class," said Race Director Warwick Hoban.
"On the yachting side, we will see some of the world's best ocean racing sailors lining up for honours in the various divisions, plus the super-fast Sydney-38 class will be incorporating their Australian championships into the event.
"But the great aspect about the Hahn Premium Race Week, starting on August 16, is that it is not just about fast and furious racing - there's a fun side and the 20th anniversary celebrations will be huge.
"This year the lay-day on Monday August 18th will feature the traditional Moet and Chandon lunch at the Beach House followed that evening by a street party and concert by top Australian rockers Jimmy Barnes and Diesel. Every evening will feature an array of entertainment across the island.
"And of course there's the famous Whitehaven Beach Party on Thursday August 21st, where the crews will kick back and unwind with a game of beach cricket with some members of the Queensland and Australian cricket teams after a quick race from Hamilton Island," said Mr Hoban.

Hog's shirtsleeves event
The first event of the program this year is the Hog's Breath Race Week starting on xxxxxxxx
"This year's Hog's social programme won't be one to forget with the new marina providing a social hub for the fleet. The Wolverines will be playing each afternoon for after race drinks. There will be a daily Coconut Lotto with each competing boat in the draw as well as the traditional "Foam Parties" during the regatta" says Hog's Sam Crichton
"The Hog's Breath Race Week Daily Chronicle will provide information on what's happening around town, who is making the most of their visit to Airlie Beach and what is happening on the racing side of things."
This year's Lay Day has plenty of activities organised with a Skydiving display at the Whitsunday Sailing Club as well as live bands, Team Tug of War and the Coconut Lotto.
For more information on Hog's Breath Race Week, including Entry forms, go to:

A true fisherman won't say . . .

"Wow, I've never caught a fish that big!"
"Hey! Lets take our wives fishing!"
"Let's go shopping, fishing can wait."
"Those hip boots make your butt look big and they don't match your belt!"
"We don't need to buy those lures and beer, let's send our wives flowers instead?"
"I don't think Duct Tape will fix that."
"I feel guilty not washing the breakfast dishes before coming out fishing!"
"Hey somebody land this fish for me. I need to tidy up the camp."
"I can't go fishing, my neighbour is having a Tupperware party and I really need a mixing bowl."
"I think electronic fish finders should be banned."
"Let's throw this fish back, I don't think it will fit in the frying pan."
"We can always go to the fish shop on the way home."

Hi Gang,

"The lack of reports lately has been due to a very busy start to the season. Together with the Mackerel season, bringing the new boat up from down south in the cold country and the RAP program there has not been much sleep.
'The Gun' will back up 'Marlin Blue' while I am up north for the marlin season this year. I do still have some spots available for the heavy tackle marlin season. 'The Gun' is a 40-foot Blackwatch with all the toys. The vessel is a state of the art fishing machine.
"The RAP program is coming to a close with submissions to be into the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority by the 4th of August. Please view the web site at and have a look at the zoning plan. The green zones are what we are objecting to - most importantly the area north of Hayman Island and Bait Reef. Please fill a submission form on the net with your objection to these two important areas.
Fishing has been great with a bumper Mackerel season. Tight lines. Capt Ken Bryant on Marlin Blue.

Another 'consultation'

Maritime Safety Queensland are conducting a review of the Transport Operations (Marine Safety) Regulation 1995, including two rounds of community and industry consultation, it is proposed to remake the regulation in 2003. Written comments must be provided no later than 25 August 2003.
A copy of the regulatory impact statement and a draft copy of the proposed new regulation are provided at
One interesting point is the proposed name change for the grandly named Recreational Ship Master Licence, formerly the Speedboat licence to a new Marine Drivers licence.

Course offered

The Queensland Marine Academy is conducting a seminar on "Collision Regulations and Bridge Resource Management"
The course is designed to provide professional development to the industry and seafarers. This brings increased awareness of safety and the role of crew onboard as managers.
The seminar will be conducted as a refresher and will benefit those people already in the industry and for those just commencing their career.
Cannonvale TAFE. Tuesday August 5 at 17:30 - 19:30. Cost $20 per person. Queensland Marine Academy. For further enquiries phone 07 49464151

The ocean is . . .

The ocean is a body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.
Ambrose Bierce

Fair winds to Ye!
Cap'n Dan

Thursday, July 10, 2003

Most marine accidents in good weather: report says

Daytime with good visibility and clear weather are major defining factors of marine incidents resulting in fatalities or serious injuries in Queensland. These factors, perhaps surprisingly, were each involved in more than sixty per cent of the 58 fatal and serious injury incidents contained in the Marine Safety Incidents Annual Report 2002.
The next largest attribute was human operational error reported as a contributing factor in 42 per cent of incidents. Another human factor, 'inattention' was also up represented in 16 fatal and serious incidents.
The report, issued each year by Maritime Safety Queensland profiles Queensland's maritime safety performance as measured by marine incidents during the year.
"The data contained in the report is foundational to understanding how and why marine incidents occur on our waterways and developing effective and innovative measures to continuously improve maritime safety in Queensland," says Captain John Watkinson, General Manager of Maritime Safety Queensland
"In the last five years, Queensland's population has risen by more than ten per cent and the number of registered vessels by a staggering 31 per cent. Despite this significantly increased exposure on our waters, serious marine incidents have been trending downwards." Captain Watkinson said.
Recreational vessels represent 96.8 per cent of Queensland's total registered fleet. Speedboats make up 84 per cent of all registered vessels. Sailing vessels make up 3.1 per cent of registrations.
Recreational personal watercraft, or jet skis as they are better known, continue to trend downwards with their involvement in fatal and serious incidents down more than 30 per cent below their previous four-year average.
Recreational jet skis make up about three per cent of the total Queensland registered recreational vessel fleet and during the reporting period their numbers grew by more than 24 per cent.
Commercial vessel registrations have steadily increased over the last five years with 2.4 per cent growth in 2002. They were involved in 66 per cent of the year's 629 reported marine incidents.
Commercial fishing vessels, while making up less that 0.001 per cent of all registered vessels, were involved with 33.3 per cent of incidents involving a fatality, 30.7 per cent where the ship was a total loss and 14.6 per cent of all reported marine incidents.
Volunteer marine rescue groups responded to 2559 callouts for assistance statewide in 2002 - 190 more than the previous year. Breakdowns accounted for 64 per cent of callouts. VMR groups provide a strong safety net for the professional and recreational maritime community in Queensland the report says.
On the Waterfront thanks Captain John Watkinson and his staff for supplying a copy of the report. It is available from Maritime Safety Queensland offices.

Boat owner fined for safety breaches

A charterboat operator has been fined $4000 for breaching marine safety regulations under the Transport Operations (Marine Safety) Act 1994.
The Cairns based operator was fined and also ordered to pay $4000 costs in the Cairns Magistrates Court on 26 June 2003 for causing the vessel to be operated unsafely by allowing the vessel to carry an excess of passengers and failing to equip the vessel with sufficient life jackets and an inflatable life raft sufficient to carry each person on-board.
Department of Primary Industries Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol (QBFP) apprehended the man in the early hours of New Years Day 2001.
The master of the same vessel was fined and ordered to pay nearly $4000 for similar breaches of overloading passengers, deficient safety equipment and failing to complete the vessels logbook earlier this year.
Cairns QBFP District Manager Bob Koch said the court finding highlighted that breaches of the marine safety legislation are taken seriously and will not be tolerated.
"When offences are detected there have been serious consequences for both the owner of the vessel and the master," he said.
Mr Koch said the majority of the marine industry runs professional operations in accordance with the legislation and he reminded all users of the water to comply with marine safety rules.

Missing the sea?

A few more suggestions on what to do if you get lonely for the sea. You know you are missing the sea when you wake up every night at midnight and have a peanut butter sandwich on stale bread. Optional: Canned spaghetti or cold soup. This is particularly good and reeks of realism if eaten while standing under the lawn sprinkler on a cold night.
You raise the thresholds and lower the top sills on all your doors so that you either trip over the threshold or hit your head on the sill every time you pass through one of them. Best fun in the dark.
Sleep on the laundry floor with the dryer running. Make sure the dryer is full of diesel steeped clothes and old socks.
When making cakes, prop up one side of the pan while it is baking. Then spread the icing really thick on one side to level off the top. Eat it with your hands. Yum, Yum!

Edgecumbe Bay light restored

The F.G (F by day) leading light bearing 329° which marks the channel to the wharf in Edgecumbe Bay at Bowen has been restored to normal. Charts affected: AUS 268, 826

Bow, wow!

"If you're not the lead dog the view is always the same..."

Fair winds to Ye!
Cap'n Dan

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

Sailors with disABILITIES smash record
When the sailors with disABILITIES left Sydney on May 25 to circumnavigate Australia, their one wish was to finish what they started, to sail their way around Australia, non-stop and unassisted, and to make the public aware that disabilities do not stop people from achieving their dreams. But just quietly, their dream was to also break the existing race record - and it was a dream, until Tuesday afternoon.
Tuesday 3.04.16pm AEST, their Lyons 54' yacht, KAZ and her crew crossed the finish line at Sydney Heads to write themselves into the world record books. Not only the fastest time recorded for a circumnavigation of Australia for a monohull yacht, but the first disabled crew to successfully circumnavigate and break the existing record for this journey, which prior to their finish, had been held by an able-bodied crew.
The sailors with disABILITIES story is one of true grit and determination in the face of disbelievers and knockers in the past. Today, as in past endeavours, this group of dedicated, experienced and determined sailors did what many able-bodied sailors have been unable to do - they completed a circumnavigation in record time - the previous record of 43 days 19hrs 29min,was set by Australians, Jeremy Pearce and Kanga Birtles in October 1999, on a 60' monohull yacht.
KAZ and her crew shattered that record, shaving over six and a half days off the prior record.
An emotional David Pescud, owner/skipper of KAZ said on crossing the finishing line 'I feel humbled, fantastic, unbelievable - 6500 nautical miles and we're here.'
On breaking the race record, he commented, 'it's an amazing feeling, when we crossed the line my guts went up and down a hundred times when I realised what we had done.'
Out on the Harbour to greet KAZ and her crew, John Messenger, Commodore of the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA), said, "this is a fantastic effort and what a great achievement, for them, for our Club and for disabled sailors around the world. David Pescud and his crew have put Australia on the map in terms of disabled sailing, they are leading the way for others, I feel very proud of what they have done."
Following his comments, John Messenger presented each of the seven crew, David Pescud (severe Dyslexia), Phil Thompson (arm amputee), Kim Jaggar (arm amputee), Al Grundy (polio), Harald Mirlieb (deaf), Albert Lee (double leg amputee) and Brett Pearce (Spina Bifida) with individual commemorative plaques.
Asked about the best and worst of the trip, crew said "the hardest was the Southern Ocean, it was really cold. The best was rounding Maatsuyker Island at Tasmania; it was just awesome, wonderful, and spectacular. We were in close and saw the lighthouse, the first land we had seen since Cape Wessel. We did see an oilrig too, and Brett was convinced there was a McDonald's there and wanted us to stop. The top of Australia was awesome too, I had never been there before, so that was something special."

Gallipoli Rally 2004
His Excellency Mr Tansu Okandan, Ambassador, Embassy of the Republic of Turkey invites you to take part in a unique and memorable sailing event to include the Anzac Day Commemorative Service at Gallipoli
Apart from the special symbolism and emotion of being part of the 89th Anzac Day Dawn Service at Anzac Cove on the 25th April and the Commemorative Service at Lone Pine or Chunuk Bair, the special cultural and sightseeing program being offered in the program will provide all participants with an everlasting memory.
For more information and a detailed program, contact Rally Director, Teki Dalton C/ Waterfront.

Fishers to meet
A group of commercial and amateur fishers will meet on Friday evening at the Les Stagg Oval to discuss the proposed changes to reef zoning.
Organisers say there has been a good response with many keen to attend the meeting.
Those invited to the Proserpine meeting include 'anyone who likes to throw a line in the water' according to supporters. The meeting will commence at 7 pm. Further information: Ian Lade 4946 1882

Low Rock light restored
Mariners are advised that the North Cardinal Mark Q light, which marks the northern side of Low Rock, has been restored to normal. Charts affected: AUS 252, 253.

Blessings of freedom
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
Thomas Paine (1737-1809)

Fair winds to Ye!
Cap'n Dan