Departed Cooktown

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Thu 5 Sep 2019 04:34

Noon Position: 15 32.1 S   145 19.5 E
Course: East  Speed: 5 knots
Wind: SSE, F3 gentle breeze
Sea: slight  Swell: negligible
Weather: sunny, warm

I awoke early this morning, restless with the promise of getting under way.  Standing on deck with the grey dawn breaking, I found that the wind had eased significantly. The rigging was no longer moaning and wailing and the Australian flag on Sylph’s backstay no longer snapped angrily, but merely fluttered.  Back down below, I checked the weather forecast – light south easterly breezes for the next few days.  It was an ideal opportunity to start heading south. As I was having a cup of tea deliberating on the situation, a neighbouring boat weighed anchor and motored out to sea. Clearly, they concurred with my assessment. I immediately set to getting Sylph ready for sea, the first priority being to get a cup of tea for Kate.  That done, I then got the dinghy on board and secured, removed the mainsail cover, fitted the windvane to the self-steering, and had a general tidy up down below. 

At 0830 the anchor came home onto Sylph’s stub bowsprit and I guided her out over the shallows of the mouth to the Endeavour River, past the Cooktown wharves, out between the buoys marking the entrance channel, and into deep clear water. Kate hoisted the mainsail, I unfurled the jib and shut down the motor. Sylph was free again.. It felt good to feel her softly rising and falling, heeled to the gentle breeze, the odd splash of spray landing with a sparkle on her foredeck.

All is well.