January 2018

Happy New Year.

2017 went out with a bang

No, it’s not the Boat Shed exploding, it’s the fireworks


Last Month

The dust has settled & heads have cleared after the Fitzroy Island end of year party. (See the previous newsletter). The time for eating and drinking too much has also passed. It’ll soon be time to get back into sailing. Congratulations to Scott Davis for convincing Santa to bring him a new boat. We are all eager to see it at the Marina and screaming past us on the water.

We had two significant CYC voyages this month.

Wazza’s adventures in Sydney mixing it with the Sydney Hobart leaders out of the Heads (He said he could have passed them if he was trying). See the Feature Story (below) for more exciting adventures of the Big Green Cat or Barefoot.

Anastasia also sailed south for the big event, 18 days of sailing including 9 or so nights got Gary & Shari down to experience the magic or Sydney Harbour where they were joined by Kerry D for a couple of days. If anyone is looking for a trip back on Anastasia call Gary on 0418 381 656‬

Dinghy Learn to Sail

If you are interested in training, please contact the CYC office for more information, 07 4031 2750. There is no age barrier and, especially if you crew on a bigger boat, this is highly recommended. It’s only four weeks of Saturday mornings with a BBQ after. The first course starts on Saturday 3rd Feb. Please call Scott Davis (the dinghy fleet captain) on 0410 477 166 to confirm you are coming.  Bring a stinger suit (or long sleeved shirt), hat and shoes that you don’t mind getting wet (no thongs).

Coming UP – This Month

16th January 2018, Tuesday – Sailability gets going again, thence every Thursday and Tuesday. If you want to help call Andy 0435 013 709.

3rd Feb 2018, Saturday – Week one of the learn to Sail course. Call Scott 0410 477 166

4th Feb 2018, Sunday – Skippers Briefing at 10am – all you need to know about getting your boat ready for some fun sailing with the rest of the CYC fleet in 2018. To get an idea of the equipment you need on your boat, check out the EQUIPMENT AUDIT FORM – CATEGORY 5 MONOHULLS or MULTIHULLS.  Call Neil ‭0417 625 236‬

10th February 2018 – Biggest Sign On Day – Organised by the Cairns Convention Centre, the free, fun, family day out is an opportunity for young people to discover that there is more to a sport than chasing balls in footy, cricket & thugby. We hope to have a stand with several dinghies set-up and of course we will need enthusiastic members to go along to show young and old that sailing with the CYC is low cost and high fun. Call Kevin 0412 306 130

10th Feb 2018, Saturday – Week two of the Learn to Sail course.


WAGS – Every Wednesday. A fun sailing day with others, stress-free and a chance for non-members to sail for the day, just $20 gets you on a boat. Be at the Boat Shed at 12. No need to call anyone, just turn up. Backpackers welcome.

House Keeping

We still need more people with RSA’s so we can keep the bar running longer. A big thank you to those volunteers that have been keeping thirsty sailors throats wet, but it’s not fair to leave it to just a few. They’ll burn out.

Keelboat skippers and crew – if you want to broaden your experience there is an easy way to find boats that need crew or an easy way to find crew. Get the “SailConnect” app on your phone. It’s free from Yachting Australia. (Click here to load on an iPad). Click here for an overview.

Want to sail a little catamaran?

Help, I need sailors

We have several Nacra 350’s at Ellis Beach that are available for anyone to sail. (Best to have done the Learn to Sail course first though). If you don’t use them, they will be SOLD. Same goes for the Lasers so, contact Barry at Ellis. Even though the Ellis Beach opening is not until 3rd March I’m sure if several members got together Barry could organise something. 0428 369 303

Cyclone Season

Review the Ports North Cyclone Contingency Plan. Click this link.

Feature Story

Continued from last month…. (thank you Wazza)

Well, the old “Wreck in a paddock” has finally made it to Sydney.

On arrival yesterday the Green boat sailed in under the rarely used black and green spinnaker right amongst the multihull fleet that were racing in a stiff 20-knot northeaster. The wind picked up fast, and I was massively overpowered and had to get the kite down FAST!

Gaining control, I watched as the very fast “Quickstep” came screaming by (another Cairns built boat ) followed by the great looking tri, “Lukim Yu”. These boats were smoking along looking like huge balls of spray making the very expensive, and big, local racing mono’s look like slow semi-trailers.

 Catching up with Nolwenn who has crewed on “Barefoot” in Airlie, Cairns and Port Douglas was great, and it will be sad to see her leave the country for France… We’ll miss the arrogant frog!

Awesome Sailing moment….

Comanche sliding past Barefoot

We were motoring along Sydney’s Beautiful Harbour on the Double Gherkin when the fastest sailing monohull in the world comes by blotting out the skyline with its towering mast and sails while practising starting manoeuvres for the Sydney to Hobart race in a couple of days. This is an amazing boat and to see it powered up sailing this close was pretty cool.
The sound of the sheets being wound on was heard over 1000 meters away. Can’t wait for the start on Boxing day.

Next on the calendar will be going for a sail on “Panther” the ex “Cynophobe” from Airlie beach. The new owner wants to get her moving a bit quicker, so I’m going to share the things that I’ve learnt along the way.  Hopefully, we can squeeze some speed out of her. This will be followed by the boxing day spectator fleet for the Sydney to Hobart race then the fireworks for Sydney Harbour New Years Eve!!
The Sydney to Hobart yacht race, The second most significant day on the Harbour and the Green boat was part of the spectator fleet. 

Knowing how wild it gets at the start line we decided to go outside the heads to avoid the traffic, and it was awesome to have the big guys coming straight at you with overwhelmingly tall sail area and boat speed. Blackjack was first out of the heads and Barefoot sailed alongside for a few miles keeping a respectable distance when Wild Oats 11 came up behind, and I had to tack away to stay clear of the old girl.

The scene is pretty intense with the big powerful 100 footers and the out of control spectator fleet, big planing powerboats that push out large wakes and confused seas tossing you about. It sure was a spectacle that would be hard to beat.Was under Mainsail only and about to pull out the screecher like those guys had, but it was insanely rough, so I didn’t unfurl it. I’m sure I would have passed them with it. 

I wish I had the opportunity to take more pictures but hands were full.

Several friends had rung telling me that they had seen the Green cat on the TV coverage which was exciting as Cats aren’t actually invited to the party in this neck of the woods. Barefoot has not broken anything on this trip, and it will be good to do the same thing on the way home!Now for the big day on Sydney harbour….. New Years Eve fireworks!

Thanks to Kerry D for the photo

Its a fantastic party and it doesn’t get any better than being on a boat.

9th Jan 2018.

Sitting at Yamba on the northern NSW coast waiting for the next weather window to head north, Barefoot has racked up some miles, adventures, exciting mishaps and of course being in the best spot in Sydney Harbour for the NYE fireworks.
Freinds came down from Cairns and Melbourne, and we escaped the dramas of boats anchoring too close that is always a problem in the Harbour at NYE. It was happening all around us though with people losing control of their big expensive boats and crashing into the bows of other boats while others dragged anchors and picked up other boats’ anchors as they got blown with the wind. It was entertaining and sad at the same time.

Sydney harbour is such a beautiful place, but an unseen force was influencing the decision to head north so up came the shiny stainless steel anchor and Barefoot sailed out the harbour in light east winds heading towards home with no plan or timetable.
As we sailed past Pittwater, we saw the big Monos that were doing the Pittwater to Paradise race.
The wind had gone light northeast, and we were close hauled. The green boat jumped on the tail end of the race fleet and started catching the boats out in front, Wishing that all that cruising gear onboard wasn’t there so we could go a bit faster and was hoping a bit more wind would come in so she could lift her skirt. We got our wish off Swansea when the breeze freshened, and the windward hull started to fly (always exciting no matter how many times I do it) the boats in the race fleet disappeared in the distance and Barefoot was topping 14’s to windward! Oh yeah!
The excitement was shortlived though as a massive thunderstorm was rolling in and that suggested we bravely run away to the shelter of Newcastle while the race fleet stayed out at sea and I hope they didn’t get battered by the front too much??
Next adventure was breaking a rudder at 20 knots fully powered up, but I’ll save that for the next story.

ED: We’d love to have your stories too. Please call the editor, Hew on 0409976888 or email at iwantone2@icloud.com (We can fix spelling and grammar slip-ups)


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