There is something about cruising through areas you have never been to before… it awakens your sense of adventure, rekindles the child in you when everything you see is a new experience.
We are bound for Magnetic Island and Townsville. We could have done this in a couple of long passages, but why rush? We have no schedule and enjoy the leisurely pace. Over the past few days we have made small hops… from Stonehaven anchorage in the Whitsundays to Little Jonah Beach, then through the Gloucester Passage to Bona Bay on Gloucester Island, then a longer sail to Cape Upstart, Cape Bowling Green and Magnetic Island.
The area is scenic with rugged ranges right down to aqua waters, there are attractive sandy beaches which means Bengie has resumed her dinghy rides and morning walks and so have we.
It is sunny and pleasantly warm during the day, cool at night for comfortable sleeping… typical tropical winter cruising. We are sailing every day, alternating between the screecher and the spinnaker with the light downwind conditions. Some days we go for just a couple of hours, others it is a day-long sail. Sue is clocking up a few hours at the wheel, getting used to the beast and doing less and less meanders! It takes a while to get a feel for the boat and it is hard to concentrate for very long, but she is doing well, nearly as well as George, the autopilot.
Today as we post this, we are sailing to Magnetic Island. We will explore here for a few days, top up supplies in Townsville then continue going north. But we will tell you about this in a next post. As for Sue, she is keen to stay on board till Cairns, so we may have her with us for a while longer.