Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sat 2 Mar 2024 01:17

Noon Position: 38 22.0 S 144 34.0 E
Course: W Speed: 5 knots
Wind: S, F4 - moderate breeze
Sea: moderate Swell: S 2 m
Weather: overcast, mild
Day's Run: 140 nm

We have made good time and have arrived off Port Phillip Heads earlier than I anticipated.

The breeze picked up nicely yesterday afternoon from the WSW allowing us to run before it, wing-on-wing, making good a speed of six knots and arriving off Cape Otway at 0100 this morning. Once safely past the Cape we gybed and ran off to the NW towards the entrance to Port Phillip, again wing-on-wing but now with the jib poled out to port.

From there the wind gradually backed further into the south and freshened, pushing us closer to the shore, so at 0400 we gybed back onto the starboard tack, still running before the fresh breeze. We biased our course to starboard of the rhumb-line track as we would be arriving off the Heads well before slack water and with a significant sea and swell running it seemed unwise to attempt running the gauntlet of the Rip outside of its tamer period.

A short while ago, at 1115, we were about two miles off the beach to the east of Point Nepean. We have gybed around onto the port tack, with a reef in the main and partially furled jib, while we await slack water at 1415, some two hours away.

The plan is to gybe again at around 1300 and then run for the entrance, hopefully arriving right on slack water. >From there we will head for Portsea, a short distance inside the heads, and anchor in the lee of its white sandy beach. The wind is forecast to remain in the south over the next couple of days so we will have a restful night at anchor and then tomorrow cross Port Phillip and look for a berth somewhere in the vicinity of Melbourne.

All is well.