Flat out on Bass Strait

Red sky in the morning at Killiecrankie, sailors’ warning!  Only we got a surprise, not the mean old Bass Strait we know and love, but a sedate, slightly boring, flat as a tack crossing, requiring both engines!  This was our 24th Bass Strait crossing and the most benign of all.





Flat as a tack

Although we did not sail much, there was plenty of interest in the sky early in the morning and last thing at night, and different seascapes, with welcome interludes from dolphins and sea birds… oh yes, and lots of snacks and a few catnaps.


With a change in forecast bringing the return of the dreaded westerlies earlier, we pushed on with both engines to get to Lakes Entrance as quickly as possible.

The night was lit up by the Milky Way and a crescent moon, not to mention the oil rigs looking like Christmas trees. Instead of arriving at dawn after multiple watches, we all stayed up and came in at 1.30 am.

It was a bit daunting crossing the bar and entering the Lakes at night. Wade took us in and Chris got us to the Flagstaff Jetty.  There were boats there which made it a bit tight to get in.  Why aren’t these people working?

We got up in the morning, feeling a bit shell shocked.  Ann summed it all up: “From the splendid isolation to suburbia”…  It goes without saying we did not hang around there for long and moved to a deserted spot in the Gippsland Lakes to slowly bring ourselves back to reality over the next few days. We will publish one last post to bring together the reflections and impressions of our Summer 2016-17 cruise.

For now, here are some highlights of our passage back to our home port.


23 thoughts on “Flat out on Bass Strait

    • Thanks John – sunrise and sunset were quite a spectacle, really special. As to the motor across Bass Strait, it is probably lucky given the number of storms we have weathered! At least it was comfortable for all!

  1. Welcome back to the mainland! We are still here (painting is not a fun job) so will get to see you. Yay. Depending on our finish date we are happy to catch up in Melbourne or Gippsland. (And I would love a Bengie cuddle if the dots line up). Cheers Trish

  2. wow, what a smooth crossing, we had a similar one but it was not that smooth. Enjoy your last few days, now for the big pack up yuck. liked the shots

  3. Missed a couple of posts due to short trip to the Eastern Caribbean, will catch up soon. This one has some really beautiful pictures, those must have been some very special moments. Also, thanks again for the recommendation on the Flinders book. I finally got it (e-book) and it is fascinating. Best to read with a map by one’s side, however, which helps enormously.

    • Hi Robin – how was the trip?
      Yes knowing the area or being armed with a map helps makes sense of it all.

      Re our last few posts, lots of great anchorages and doing this with friends is really special. You get to see their reactions and delight. The Bass Strait crossing was an odd one but the sunset and night sail were quite something!

      • The trip was interesting, we spent a few days in St. Kitts-Nevis, followed our standard technique of befriending a local taxi driver who facilitated some exploring beyond the usual tourist spots. No great photos, though; didn’t take my usual gear. Heading to the Galapagos next week, hoping for some better chances there.

    • Thanks Cathy – it was quite an experience and the evening was magic. We are extracting the last bits of cruising fun in the safety of the Gippsland Lakes. Ann says she is not coming home by the way!

      • The days are starting to lengthen here now and the sunsets get a bit less dramatic but we’re still getting some really beautiful skies when it isn’t grey and raining. Just had a strangely mild weekend and my friends actually got the boat out on the South Coast for the day on Saturday. Bit blustery but glorious sunshine 🙂 Wish we could have joined them!!

  4. Lovely pictures. Not often you see Bass Strait that calm, but the sky looked angry.

We welcome and appreciate your comments

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.