Final Leg to Darwin - Departed Alcaro Bay at 6:45 am
Dropped anchor at Cape Don/Alcaro Bay at 2:30 am after a good and fast sail from Cape Wessel. Winds dropped below a level where we could continue under sail just before dusk and we then had to motor the remaining 9 hours 55 nm to the anchorage. Had adverse current (1 - 2 kts) over much of that distance which kept the speed slow even with the motor running. For the first 30 hours we averaged over 8 kts while seeing lots of 10's and 11's on the speed over ground display as we surfed down 3 meter swells going our way. We were so looking forward to the peace and tranquility fo that selected anchorage that it was disappointing to see our available hours for sleep dwindle down to just 4 hours....but, as Cheryl put it, 4 hours of totally peaceful, undisturbed sleep feels like a full night's restful sleep....all good!!
When we left the anchorage this morn, S/V Kilkea and S/V Miss Behaving were just passing our anchorage at a distance of about 6 nm out in the open water. We came out from the anchorage and once we turned south and passed close by Cape Don, we were flying with speed over ground between 12.5 and 13.5 kts. That was close in shore, the other boats passing in the middle of Dundas Strait reported 2 - 2.5 kts of favourable current.
That favourable current was accompanied by 20 -25 degrees of tide set on our beam which resulted in us heading 235 - 240 degrees magnetic to hold our 210 M course.....now there is a real "dog walk" ....or should I say "crab walk". THe current is dropping steadily and is now at about 2 kts favourable for us....and with the decreasing current, the tide set direction impact on our heading is now down to about 10 degrees...getting back to "normal".
But NOT for long....we have to go through another tide change and reversal of current flow later in the day...hopefully we have the timing correct for our arrival at that channel so that we again have favourable current.
Our current indicated Darwin ETA shows about 7 pm...we will see how the day goes.
DTG to Darwin: 82 nm