Marina Adelaide

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Wed 11 Jan 2012 23:34
Position: 34 48.99 S 138 30.66 E
Alongside Marina Adelaide
Wind: South-west, F4 Moderate Breeze
Weather: Overcast, mild
Distance sailed: 47 nm

We enjoyed a relatively peaceful night while alongside the Edithburgh Jetty, apart from having to get up every few hours to adjust lines with the falling then rising tide. At 5am the tide was approaching high water and small waves were interacting with the underside of the jetty which was causing Sylph to jerk around a bit. I adjusted lines again and tried to go back to sleep but she was still jerking at her lines, seemed Sylph wanted to get underway. So I got up and prepared to get underway. First things first, a cup of tea.

Once properly awake I reduced down to two lines rigged up around piles so as to be able to slip them from the boat. The wind was blowing us off so the departure should have been pretty straight forward – but not so. First the forward line jammed as I tried to let it go, so I climbed ashore onto the rickety piles, freed it, cast it loose and rushed down aft to let go the aft line – which also jammed. Now I was in a spot of bother. The bow swung out ant he stern swing in, eventually coming to rest with the vulnerable and and valuable wind vane resting on one of the piles. I put the wheel hard over to port and gunned the engine to try and swing Sylph around but the lead of the line was too far aft and this proved ineffectual. My only option was to cut the mooring line. I reached under the dodger where I ALWAYS keep a sharp knife, I scrummaged around in the dark – it wasn't there! Impossible. Fortunately I had two other small pocket knifes stowed in the same position and found one, opened it up and cut the line. Hooray, we were free. I motored clear of the jetty and inspected the stern … a little scratched paintwork and the windvane was out of alignment, but there appeared to be no serious damage. The wind was blowing us out to sea, we were in no immediate danger so I grabbed some tools and about ten minutes later had the windvane back into alignment, the mainsail hoisted and Sylph's bow pointing back towards our home port, Adelaide.

The remainder of the 40 mile crossing of the St Vincents Gulf was uneventful, we passed through a large number of ships at anchor off the approaches to Port Adelaide then at 12pm passed behind the shelter of the Outer Harbour breakwater. With the wind in the south we were able to continue sailing through Light Passage but once into Lipson Reach the wind was right on the nose and as it was not practical to tack upwind in the narrow channel I started the engine and we motored the remaining four miles back to Marina Adelaide.

Now we are secured alongside once again, all cleaned up and going to a family gathering at my brother's place.

And I guess that is the extent of Sylph’s summer cruise for now, not quite of the same order as our world voyage but eventful enough for all that. I will have to work on my South Australian anchoring techniques before heading out again – always something to learn. I will post some photos later.

All is well.