The wind began to bluster in at 3am as it does, disturbing sleep and causing mayhem. We have lost one of our hatch covers, new last year. It will be out in the Tasman Sea by now if it hasn't found it's way to the bottom of the lake. "Money, Money, Money", by Abba is our theme song at the moment. I have had to put the oil, cordial bottles etc that we keep on the bench away because the boat is heeling so much at anchor that they threaten to deposit themselves on the floor. The forecast says we are getting this blow until middle of the afternoon, six hours away. However, I am glad we are in the Lake as there is no tide to speak of here, so at least we don't have that to contend with.
Lovely Lake Macquarie
|Toronto town from Olivia|
We motor sailed down from Port Stephens in comfortable sailing conditions and arrived at the Swansea Bar too early, in fact at dead low tide. Advice from Marine Rescue and our friend Roger informed us to wait at least 2 hours after low tide to be sure of enough water to enter safely. We sailed around, out to the ships and back and finally entered at two and a half hours after low tide at 4.30pm. As we crossed the Swansea Bar Peter saw a reading on the depth sounder of .8m briefly. Good thing we waited. This left us just half an hour to get up to the Swansea Bridge for the last opening at 5pm. We made it. Bridge openings always provide interest as we stopped the whole Pacific Hwy at 5pm for us to go into the Lake.
In the fading light we slowly motored up the Swansea Channel, ploughing a furrow in the sand ridges off Pelican Flat. The tide did still look a little low up here. We managed to motor over to Toronto and anchor just south of the yacht club where we are still situated. Peter has made arrangements for us to hire a swing mooring for six months from the 1st October. Apparently it is a big, strong one. It will need to be if this wind is any indication of things to come. The cost is $245 per month, much cheaper than a marina. We have several groups of friends here who will keep an eye on Olivia and Peter will come over once during January to check up on how she is going.
|Looking to Olivia at anchor (opposite to the above)|
We have caught up with Roger and Carol just before they left for a month on the Murray River with their small motor boat, Zeus, at their house while we did the washing and then later for a meal at the Royal Motor Yacht Club Toronto.
On the way down from Port Stephens Peter noticed that one of the cars that attach the sail to the mast had broken. It is a complicated looking piece of equipment and after a bus trip to Warners Bay to source a new one we found that these parts no longer exist, that a replacement would cost over $500 and that it may not fit!!! ("Money, Money, Money"!) We bussed back to Olivia with long faces and Peter decided to have another look at the broken part whereupon he discovered that it could probably be fixed by someone who could weld stainless steel. He then emailed Ric and Val for some ideas and they advised that another couple we know here, Geoff and Ellen from Bluglass, have a son who is a welder. We contacted them and they came and took the part assuring us that they thought it was possible to fix. Yay!! We have met up with another couple we know here, Bob and Libby from Synergy. Not counting relatives, I think we know more people here than in Albany. Greg will remember Bob and Libby as they were moored next to him in Cameray for a year or two.
|This is how it should look|
|The broken car|
|Waiting for coffee|