Well, it's been an eventful 24 hours.
At around about this same time last night I was out on the deck in blustery
conditions trying to salvage what I could from the white Dory runabout - as it
got repeatedly pounded and filled with water - in the appalling wind and swell
that was knocking us about. This was the scene beside the
I was able to retrieve all the things from the
sinking boat - using lasso and 15' long boathook - which was amazing - and this
morning it was normal again - I pumped all the water out of the Dory
runabout - and apart from - smashing it's little bow rail thru it's deck -
knocking a foot of paint off the side of the yacht - and tearing it's bow
rubbing strip off - we survived OK.
The storm is no problem to the yacht, but 'trapped'
as we are here - the 2 small boats tied alongside were being pounded to
The Dory runabout did not completely sink because
it is foam filled - it floated just at the surface. Also - having
those inflatable plastic fenders tied all round - helped too.
None of this could occur if we were out in the open
at the mooring - or at anchor - as the yacht would be bow into the wind always -
and the little boats streaming safely behind.
Fortunately the winds and swell coming across the
bay - eased after midnight - and this morning we were left with this situation -
of a drowned dinghy - and a bit of damage.
I was able to lower down the big 240v submersible
pump - on a rope from the deck - and activate it's float switch with the long
boathook - and pumped all the water out in a few minutes.
So I suppose - all things considered we didn't
come out of it too badly.
Today I was able to get the exhaust system
completely reconnected and the outlet fitted through the hull again.
Graham the mechanic offered to help me fit up the exhaust outlet thru the hull -
which had been removed for the plates to go on along that
spot. I fed the oddly bent pipe through the hole from the
outside until the flange - and then I needed him to just do up the 2 bolts on
the inside. Then I can connect the muffler to this section - and the
entire exhaust line will be back together - ready for us to be
I will run the engine at the next high tide
tomorrow (so that we are clear of sitting in the mud at the water inlets) - just
to make sure that it is pumping water through OK and there are no obvious leaks
in the system.
Here's a shot I took - of the exhaust outlet and
base plate - cut to fit alongside the hull plates running above there - that we
had to re-install. It's bent like that to go around and through an
opening in the next wall and up - to meet the muffler gooseneck pointing
The little pipe on the top - is where the aft deck
drains hose joins on - right at the outlet - so that the rainwater on the aft
deck runs out there too. So that was a good job out of the
It's been blowing quite strongly - but not
extreme for most of the day - but fortunately the wind has swung around to come
more from the southwest and from the land - which means that we are now quite
protected and the water right here is sheltered.
But out in the bay the yachts are open to this
But still it came as an extraordinary surprise -
this afternoon - to see that somehow during the day - and in what I would
not have called very strong winds - the big yacht 'Woronora' - that I have sent photos out
to you of - only a few weeks ago - had apparently dragged - it's anchor - and
has ended up aground on the other side of the bay - and is heeled over
The situation does not look very nice at all -
and it looks like this amazing - handcrafted yacht - that the fellow
took 38 years to build - is now in quite a bit of trouble.
Here is the best I can do at present for photos -
taken at maximum zoom - on my camera.
I didn't go to the trouble to untie my boats and
take a run out - after all the trouble I've gone to - to secure them in these
winds - but I will certainly get a closer view in the next few days - if it has
not been pulled out.
When this photo was taken at mid afternoon - it was
about 1/2 tide and rising - and as evening drew - the yacht was almost
upright again - but it didn't appear that any effort was being made to try and
pull it out - as there were no other larger boats nearby.
If it spends the night there - it will lay right
over at low tide - and it is probably on rocks, mud, and old oyster leases
- which will make a mess of it's nice hulll. The next high tide
will be at 7.30am tomorrow - and I can't see how they can get it out under it's
own power - particularly as when it blows over - it lessens it's draft -
and allows it to be pushed in even shallower.
All the other yachts - on the moorings and also a
number out there at anchor - including that big ex Navy boat (which is anchored
too) - all had no trouble riding out these SW winds - and as I said I don't
think they would have been much more than 20 knots.
I have no idea at this stage - exactly how it has
happened - but this apparently 70 ton Ferro (2nd only to us) - was only on an
anchor all this time - and not attached to a mooring - the elderly ownerbuilder
- did not want to pay for a mooring -- believed he would be OK anchored
out. There are lessons for me in what has happened - although I
have lived in the past for a number of years aboard the previous yacht - and was
only EVER anchored.
There were quite a few times then - that I sat up
on anchor watch for many hours - and if it looked like we were not holding -
have raised anchor and moved. It's hard to know how this big yacht
could have dragged back that far - without anyone on board knowing - unless
there was no-one there at the time. But I'm sure we'll find out in
Here is one of the photos of the yacht - that I
sent out to you a few weeks ago.
This is actually the direction the boats were
hanging today - too - and as you can see the yacht is ahead of the navy boat
when this was taken a couple of weeks ago - so it has travelled back quite a
distance to end up where it is now. Maybe the engine isn't working -
Well - our preparation continues at a comfortable
for 'dock departure' on Saturday
(Penny certainly seems quite relaxed about the
- and Cliff has made a point of saying
today - that he had offered originally to put the Woronora on the 6 ton mooring
block - that I will be going onto - but the fellow declined.
All being well - our next communication should be
'out in the middle of the bay'.
Bye for now.
('are we going somewhere?')
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