We pick up our From There to Here story in Esperance, Western Australia. Making landfall in Esperance after the long passage in and across the Great Australian Bight was welcome in many ways. Though the passage across the Bight was challenging, it was also amazing. Now that is was behind us, however, getting back to civilization definitely had its pluses.Read More
We regretfully left Esperance after nine lovely days and headed west towards Albany, our next port of call. With early morning light winds, we opted to leave a little later than usual and do an overnight run to Bremer Bay, ~135 nm miles away, as a stop in between. A late departure ensured a daylight arrival which we prefer, especially when we're searching for sand patches in which to anchor.
The winds were not quite as predicted … what a surprise! The forecast of 18-25 knots were mostly from the south, not SE, and a bit more boisterous than anticipated. We saw gusts to 40 knots and sustained winds in the high 20's for most of the night. We moved along rather briskly in bumpy, rolly conditions … the persistent southwest swell was up to 3 meters (~10') and the southerly waves built with the winds, making for very confused seas. We managed, but I was glad I had a passage soup ready to heat and eat with little fuss and minimal time below deck.
The night was clear and beautiful. A sliver of a crescent moon glowed in the sky, but it was short-lived and had already set before David took over watch at 9pm. The stars took over the sky, twinkling and sparkling in a brilliant display. The pungent smell of smoke was thick in the air … farmers miles away doing controlled burns of their autumn fields.
A loud crash during David's watch around 0400 had us both scurrying into the galley. The gimbal on the stove had broken. The gimbal pin looked to be sheared off (after only 28 years … things just don't hold up any more). There was my poor stove laying a-tilt, a kettle of passage soup teetering precariously close to toppling off. The soup secure, David lifted the stove out of the other gimbal, set it down on the base beneath and lashed it in place. It still worked, just a bit low for convenient use. Something to repair in Bremer Bay, perhaps?
We had little to no sleep during the night and the sunrise was candy for the eyes. Pinks, purples, oranges filled the sky and lent a rosy hue to the grey ocean waters behind us.
Our approach and anchorage in Bremer Bay in the early morning was more than welcome. Bremer Bay is just beautiful. The anchorage is fringed with a white sand beach. The clear, aquamarine waters were absolutely dazzling and a-sparkle with the bright morning sun. There were lots of people on the beach … camping, walking, fishing … most stopped to watch us anchor. Not much to watch, the anchor caught immediately. We tidied up and headed below for a quick cuppa and a long, well-deserved nap.
That's our day/night at sea … I'm thinking your day on land was a bit more exciting and less bumpy ... and your stove's probably not broken.