Stormy Weather

It is not always life in paradise on a boat, especially in stormy or rainy conditions.  You do feel you are at the mercy of the elements in inclement weather – even when you are not out there in the rough and tumble, but just simply at anchor, waiting for the storm to pass, the fog to clear or the rain to cease.

Shades of grey

Shades of grey

We have had a few of those days of late.  Our last night at Wreck Bay saw us weathering a spectacular storm.  It never got too close, but the sky was eerie with heavy dark clouds and odd patches with greeny blue tinges.

It rained and rained all night and the next day it was soggy, but dead calm: not a breath of wind, oily sea and fog.  With a southerly change forecast, we had to leave Wreck Bay (so as not to get wrecked) and make our way to our next destination to explore: Batemans Bay, 50nm further south.  It was again an eerie scenery as we motored out:  low visibility, glassy sea, and the nearby hills appearing like small islands out of the mist.  There were just shades of grey, yet it was quite breathtaking in the silvery stillness.  We were both on watch in the cockpit, keeping a keen eye on what was ahead as it would have been easy for tinnies or crab pot buoys to appear out of the fog with little warning.

Snapper Island anchorage

Our Snapper Island anchorage

In Batemans Bay we explored several anchorages.  The Tollgates, islands that guard the mouth of the bay were impressive with their basalt outcrops and sea caves, but not very inviting with very deep water and little space to swing around on anchor under their shelter.  We ended up spending three nights right inside the bay, at Snapper Island, another very rugged basalt outcrop with amazing folds in the rocks.  For three days we had rain; one minute the weather would clear a little and we would see our surroundings, the next the rain would descend on us, obscuring the entire bay.  We filled up our water tanks though!

We also had more storms with disconcerting thunder claps and lightning strikes right above us.  “Thunder and lightning, very, very frightening” hummed Wade, as he dropped the copper plate and wire in the water.  This gives lightning a path to the water, away from the boat, if it hits the mast… at least we hope!  And of course we all pray to Hocus Pocus the lightning deflector, that dandelion seed looking thing on top of the mast.  Don’t ask how that works, it is a PTCTE, a process too complicated to explain!

After three days cooped up in the cabin in front of Snapper Island, we are at risk of snapping!  I wonder whether that is where the name comes from.  It certainly is not from the amount of snapper fish we catch here!  It is now time to move to one of the coves to the East of Chain Bay for a change of scenery – still in Batemans Bay.

Our next chance to escape out of the Bay and avoid cabin fever is likely to be on Wednesday, when we will head to Broulee or the Moruya River.  We will see how things develop.

Here are a few moody photos of our stormy time from the past few days.  Click on the first image to display the gallery in full screen slideshow.


25 thoughts on “Stormy Weather

  1. yeah its cool and stormy here today. Actually its a plesant change from the heat. (good boat building weather) BTW the rudder drawings have been posted to James. We hope to catch you later this week.

    • Hi Chris – thanks for sending those plans off. Our plans at the moment are to spend today and tonight at Chain Bay (Batemans Bay) then tomorrow we’ll sail to Broulee and stay there till the southerly stops. We may still be there when you arrive, but no promises! C&W

    • It is true, cats are much more stable particularly on a beam sea. A mono will roll gunnel to gunnel whereas a cat will make quick jerks side to side, but not much roll… Much easier to live with and you don’t roll out of bed! But as a friend once said you hit every wave twice! 😊

  2. Gorgeous captures! Man, those clouds are incredible, especially where there are holes offering peaks of blue. The islands are beautiful too. Looks like you are making the most of your trip and staying safe. Hope all continues well for you.

    • Hi Carrie, have been staying hidden for a few days to keep out of the weather! But things are on the improve. Just been for a coastal walk with the macro!

      • Oh! Can’t wait to see those, glad to hear you used your land legs for a bit. I am sure it felt good to get out of the cabin. Hope the weather keeps improving for you 🙂

  3. Hi,
    wow, impressive pics indeed – and I love the “PTCTE” (new term for me…). Thanks for your comment on my site… and I do look forward to more of your posts here!
    Take care,

    • Hi Hubert, yes PTCTE is what we say with most things concerning thunder and lightning protection! 😀 Glad you enjoy our posts… More coming soon! Chris & Wade

  4. Hi Guys, I loved the sky shots and my heart went out to you Wade with the lightning happening.Your flower at the top of the mast obviously works well eh!! Keep safe Sue

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