Coffin Bay to New Years Eve, Adelaide

Because the seas were so flat and calm it allowed us a more restful sleep in a 2 hour watch pattern. As the sun rose we were nearing the mouth of the Coffin Bay, and Scarlett was close behind,

as they had been motoring all night! It was difficult to find the way into the bay as there were confusing navigation marks. I weaved our way back and forward across the mouth of the bay until I finally saw a charter fishing vessel coming out. I turned on the radar to identify his path as it overlays the chart. Then I headed in with Scarlett hot on our tail.

Once we were in and following the inner leads, it was easy to navigate the bay, zigzagging back and forth through the oyster leases with the oyster boats whizzing straight down the bay, knowing exactly where they were going! We finally made it to the Coffin Bay Public Jetty where another Seawind owner, Kerryn was eagerly waiting for us to arrive. After morning tea on Scarlett we headed to the anchorage suggested by a local fisherman and had a sleep.

After a quiet night, the wind and tide changed the next morning and with it came several problems, 1) we found ourselves running out of water underneath us and 2) the generator started to cough and splutter and the temperature rose, and the Genset shut itself down.

Just in the nick of time we pulled up the anchor and moved further south in the bay but the generator was still not happy. Alan went to investigate further and looked into the intake where he found the strainer to be full of tiny jellyfish and weed. Once cleared everything was back working but alas only for 15mins before it went off again. Same problem, and back to the stainer for another clean out. Again only 15mins later, same story, this went on for a few hours, before I answered an email from local, Les who had read the website address on our stern and said that he was watching us from he verandah, and asked how we liked their bay!! I relayed the events of the day and informed him that we were going to have to leave as the problem was not improving and Alan wasn’t happy sitting in the engine room all day!! Can’t see why not!!! Anyway Les told us he was the person in charge of the fuel wharf and advised us to come in and tie to the jetty where we could plug into power! Problem solved and this gave us a chance to meet with other locals.

During that all happening, I made the Christmas Puddings!

We enjoyed oysters for Happy Hour on board Scarlett and came back with 2 boys, Stephen and Lachlan and dog, Rhett, so they could have some play time on shore!! 

Below: At Coffin Bay Wharf

Scarlett leaving Coffin Bay!

With Christmas fast approaching we all wanted to be ‘in town’ beforehand, so we pushed on and stopped at D’Anville Bay on the Eyre Peninsular.

This ocean anchorage had several cray boats anchored whilst they wait for the crays to get caught, but it also had a 3m swell coming in. This was another time that we were thankful for our flopper stoppers!! Scarlett arrived a few hours later and radioed asking for a lend of one!! In the rise and fall of the swell their cabin would disappear completely. There is another story there about ‘something about me hooking the ocean floor’ but I will leave that for Alan to tell over a beer!!! Too Funny!

D’Anville Bay at sunset. one of the Crayboats and the wind farm!

Early, early next morning we left after doing a complete circle of Scarlet to wake them and then rounded Cape Gurnot and Cape Catastrophe before entering Thorny Passage. From here we motored north to round Cape Colbert before tucking in and anchoring in Colbert Bay so we could get the tinny up before we arrived at the marina in Port Lincoln. It was a beautiful sunny day and the bay was protected, National Park boarded the bay and the waters were crystal clear. We enjoyed a few hours fishing, washing and enjoying the sunshine before we pulled anchor for the 5nm trip across the bay.

We berthed in an extremely tight spot alongside Scarlett and awaited their return from the shops. I joined Craig and Kerry for a taxi ride to town the following day, Christmas Eve to gather supplies.

Festive dinner, Christmas Lights, carols and a cruise on board Scarlett to wander up the festooned canals, trying to dodge a lot of smaller boats in a very narrow space in the dark filled in until it was time to go to bed and await Santas’ arrival!

Port Lincoln Marina

Craig and Kerrry cooked pancakes for Christmas Day breakfast before we all caught a taxi into town to enjoy Christmas Lunch at the Port Lincoln Hotel. Stuffed full and tired we had an early night.

On Boxing Day we untied the docklines for Scarlett as they were leaving to make a quick passage to Adelaide as they were expecting the arrival of another new crew member. We stayed behind as we had to wait for the O Ring for the Transmission cooler to arrive by courier. A $5 part with a $30 courier fee!! It was supposed to be overnight delivery, ordered on the 22nd Dec,arrived the 28th!! You can see how fast a week gets chewed up!! Thanks to a close network of Nordhavn owners, we had full instructions at hand and Alan replaced it quite easily. If this part completely failed the transmission oil would have gone into the coolant and this would have been a very major job! I think it was a stitch in time

Job!! He was determined not to move again until it was replaced!

Whilst be waited we met nearby boat owners Breck and Robbie (also Nordhavn Dreamers) who were visiting from Adelaide. They invited us for Happy Hour and we joined them for dinner at the pub on the marina front, very enjoyable.

Next morning we followed the local fishing fleet out of the port in darkness and turned SE for Wedge Island, only 40nm. It was less than desirable seas so we were very happy to stop, have a fish and continue the next day!

With 70nm to go until a respectable anchorage at Troubridge Island, 36nm south west of Adelaide, we left early but this time had to wait until first light so we could take a short cut inside the off lying islands. We arrived at Troubridge Island and sought anchorage near the other yachts west of the island in calm water.

New Years Eve was here! Boy where has that year gone! We started reflecting how far we have come?? Where were we this time last year?? Scary!

The waters of the Gulf of St. Vincent were glassy the entire way across. We had now entered the Port Adelaide shipping area and kept a close eye on the shipping lanes as we crossed.

We followed the leads into Adelaide and found our berth at the Cruising Yacht Club of South Australia where we were met by my cousin Helen and her daughter, Tamra.

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