Saturday, April 27, 2013

shakedown cruises aka fixing the boat in beautiful locations

We planned (will we never learn) to leave Rosslyn at the end of February to continue our cruising. Of course we then experienced a spell of nasty weather which slightly delayed us.

We did our first shakedown cruise early in March in reasonably poor weather to test Manatee and regain our sea legs. We decided (by unanimous vote) to head to Great Keppel and surrounds, so anchored off Svendson's Beach as a change from Fisherman's Beach which was our favourite spot.

Svendson's Beach
We all jumped in the dinghy to head to the beach to stretch our legs and the blasted outboard would not start. We took turns working on it for what seemed like forever before rowing to the beach (not an easy feat in an inflatable). We spent most of the next day working on it as well. What fun we had!
The anchorage was rolly and uncomfortable, the weather miserable and Ruby refused to find her sea legs. We finally got the outboard going and made the most of our first shakedown. Oh we also managed to kill a battery! The generator was also being very temperamental, which combined with iffy weather (little sun for our solar panels) meant we had to keep our power consumption low.
We headed back to the marina.
Our second shakedown was also Marg's birthday so we again headed for Svendson's. This time we only broke the inverter. Our genoa was looking very tatty but we decided to put it into our large "later" basket. The weather was perfect, we had fabulous long walks and we had big smiles on our faces (even Ruby).
much better weather!

a windswept Marg 
a chilled AK
                                                                    happy Jack
On the day of Marg's birthday we picnicked on the beach, ate oysters straight from the rocks and celebrated our fortunate lives with champers.
milky oysters straight from the rocks
We trissed around the island in the inflatable and the outboard was serviceable if a bit rough. We came across the grandmother of all turtles near the reef who calmly watched us motor past. Below is some coral from the reef that will be dredged to make way for the new marina on the island. Too sad for words.

We headed back to the marina to provision and pick up a new inverter.
Onward ho!

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