Mission to Melbourne Accomplished!

We have made it all the way back to Melbourne and have taken up residence at Yarra’s Edge!

The last two hops

At long last the SE returned last Saturday, enabling us to head from Cleeland Bight (near San Remo) to Port Phillip Bay. It was a very dark and gloomy day for our 60nm hop, but we sailed well all the way. We came through the Rip, between Point Lonsdale and Point Nepean at noon, encountering some mighty current and had to gybe in the midst of it, which was rather ‘interesting’. The Rip is a narrow passage connecting Bass Strait to Port Phillip Bay, notorious for its strong tidal flow through the very constricted entrance and for its breakers when the breeze is up. A wind against tide arrival is the sure way to get thrown around in the white water and eddies!

Approaching the Heads
Going through the Rip at Port Phillip Heads
Our friends Gaz & Gloria are at Point Lonsdale Lighthouse, watching Anui coming in

We proceeded inside Port Phillip Bay along the eastern shores, to anchor overnight near Dromana. We could have gone all the way into town, but decided to make it an easy day.

It then left about 30nm due north across to Williamstown, a bay suburb of Melbourne on Sunday. We started with a reef in the main, going at a fair pace, but then the wind gradually died down and we motor-sailed the last stretch. We were very lucky to pick up a public mooring there. Parks moorings often end up with derelict boats as was the case here two years ago and at Cleeland Bight just a few days ago. So we were pleasantly surprised. Williamstown is where Wade’s brother Murray left us and caught a train home.

Melbourne skyline
A new view of Melbourne for Murray
Sunset over the harbour at Williamstown

Finally the next morning we motored an hour up the Yarra River to our spot in the Basin at Yarra’s Edge, in the heart of Melbourne.

It is always daunting bringing your yacht up the Yarra. First you wonder whether your mast will fit under the Bolte Bridge – there is only a meter or so to spare for Anui at the highest point. Then you have to go right up to the very low Webb Bridge which bars further access up river for yachts, and make a sharp turn just before it to get into a small basin. Luckily there was no other boat in there so we picked our spot and there we will be for a while.

Motoring up the Yarra about to go under the Bolte Bridge – yes we fit… just!

The only area of deep water in the basin is between the floating jetty and the white buoys. It might get tricky to get out, especially if another boat is behind us, but we will deal with that little challenge later!

Blue day for Anui at the basin, Yarra’s Edge
Web Bridge at night
The Webb Bridge at night

Melbourne has many bridges that cross the Yarra River, ranging from the West Gate and Bolte Bridges to the many others that take pedestrians, cars and trains from one side of the city to the other. The Webb Bridge is one of the most eye-catching and striking modern designs. It has won many awards in recognition of its unique composition. It was designed by famous Australian artist Robert Owen, in collaboration with architects Denton Corker Marshall. The shape of the bridge pays tribute to the Aboriginal history of the land and is modeled on a traditional Koorie fishing trap, used to catch eels. It provides a link for pedestrians and cyclists across the Yarra River between the Docklands precinct in the north and the residential developments to the south of the river.

Our spot in the Basin next to the Webb Bridge will be our base until at least the 11th. It is highly likely we will extend our stay beyond this, but we will see how things develop. In the meantime we dream of many more adventures to come, although we fear they might be quite some time away. Our furry crew Bengie is rather happy here in the cooler conditions, especially when dragon flies flutter under the nets and pique her attention.

It’s a wrap

We have come a long way! From Southport (Queensland) to Melbourne (Victoria), we covered 980nm, were underway for 23 days, but sailing for 11 of these including 4 nights. The rest was spent at anchor waiting for weather windows. We think we have done well. We are grateful for the hands-on help from Waz and Murray, thankful for the moral support from our friends who followed us on Marine Traffic and kept encouraging us.

As a safety measure and to ensure our efforts to sail all the way here don’t get derailed, we remind everybody that we are in lockdown on Anui until we have had our first round of specialist medical appointments – after the 8th of February. To our Melbourne friends, thank you for your patience. Have a brilliant week!

24 thoughts on “Mission to Melbourne Accomplished!

  1. You must be relieved guys! I can’t help but think that if you had a mono, you’d be lucky to be in Sydney by now ….

    • We are relieved, Elgar. The speed and strength of Anui when on a mission was impressive. Even Take It Easy would have been left behind and not coped with some of the conditions we sailed through. Appointments started… we could be here for a while!

  2. You guys have to be feeling very relieved and grateful to have made such a long journey, and in time for your medical appointments. Well done! Entering the harbor in those currents would freak me out! Best wishes, guys! 😎🇦🇺

  3. Well done Anui! Love that spot at Yarra’s Edge. We were there just after launching Bossa Nova in 2014. Memories. Good luck with the appointments.

    • Thanks Amanda. Process started – we’ll be here for a while but have to do what we have to do! Two years ago it was Wadie keeping us here, now it’s my turn!

  4. I’m so glad that you got to Melbourne without any circumstances. You must be needing a bit of “Terra Firma” No? 🙂

  5. I hope all the tests on you both go well and you get some encouraging news and resolutions. I also hope you get to enjoy your home town and eventually get to catch up with your friends. Cheers

    Sue

  6. All good Chris. It was my greatest pleasure to have the privilege to accompany you two magnificent life coaches (ok, and sailing coaches 😀) to Eden. An experience of a lifetime. We are just on our way back from Jindabyne, now at Bateau Bay as my Fliteboard requires some tweaking (another story another time).
    Congratulations on getting back and best wishes for the days ahead with your specialists. Cheers, Waz

  7. Welcome back, Chris and Wade. Very glad you made it safely, and in such good time. Best wishes for your up-coming appointments. We’ll hope to see you when the time is right.
    Cheers, from Mary and Mic.

  8. Belated thanks for the hospitality on a most enjoyable couple of weeks with you and Wade.

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 )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter 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.