Snug Cove, Twofold Bay

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Wed 17 Aug 2011 07:39

Position: Snug Cove, Twofold Bay
Wind: North 5-6 Fresh to Strong Breeze
Weather: overcast, showers
Days Run: 98 nm

At 9 pm, as the tide approached its apogee, I let go our lines from the good ship Talisman, kicked the motor into gear and we slowly made our way out of the Clyde River and towards its dreaded bar. I kept my eyes glued to the leads which were supposed to indicate the deep water over the bar, and sure enough this time, while the echo sounder went down to 2 meters, which means we had only 20cm below the keel, it was sufficient water and we didn't touch bottom. As the depth started to increase again I started to breathe again, and turned my attention to the next part of our departure, looking for an occulting white light shining the path out between the southern shoreline and the Tollgate Islands sitting in the middle of the entrance to the Bay. The conditions were very choppy and the winds light as we motored out. I had hoisted the mainsail while still within the shelter of the bay, fully expecting to have to put a reef or even two in once into clear water as strong winds were forecast for the night and a gale warning for the morning. But such was not the case. The sea remained very lumpy but there was very little wind to cause it. I thought that conditions would improve as we made out way into deeper water and out of the tidal influence of the Bay but it didn't turn out that way, and as we rolled around abominably I cursed New South Wales waters as being some of the worst sailing in the world. Initially I tried putting a reef in the mainsail to reduce the slatting and groaning and still make some headway, but I had to give that up and finally resorted to running before the light breeze with just enough headsail up to maintain steerage.

Fortunately as dawn approached the wind picked up and we were soon bowling along at about seven knots. Sometimes Sylph was as steady as a rock when the waves were right aft (for some reason the seas were not aligned with the wind direction) but at other times with the waves on the quarter the ride was rather on the rolly side. Nonetheless with the fresh breeze we made good time and have now come to anchor in Snug Cove off the town of Eden, in Twofold Bay. This is in fact quite a historic little port on the New South Wales coast, but perhaps more of that tomorrow.

Time to make a curry for dinner.

All is well.