Tuesday, 10 June 2014
Geraldton, Jurien Bay, Perth
We had a good sleep, well protected from the westerly overnight, and woke to very cool but calm conditions, and not raining. In fact, we have had very little rain throughout the entire trip.
At 1330, Ron decides to follow the storm down the coast so we raise anchor and head for the exit out of Shark Bay in the SW corner.
As soon as we turn the corner to head out into the Indian Ocean we get a sense of what might lie ahead.
We are heading straight into a strong westerly wind and in the channel the seas are confused around a large swell.
Another night and day (24th) of getting pounded, and due to having to reduce speed we will be arriving late into Geraldton.
Fortunately, we arrive at the channel entrance just before dark, and even Ron commented as we negotiated the channel... "I wouldn't want to have done this in the dark". Geraldton is a large commercial port, also with a large fishing port, and then a marina with boat ramps.
The channel is well markered for the most part but it twists and turns and at times narrow, and for a good chunk of it we were side on to the huge swell rolling in, so it was good to do it with the last light of day.
Even entering the marina is tricky because as always there are shallow areas to avoid.
However just on dark, we tie up alongside a jetty berth and break out the rum.
I notice there is a Coles directly across the main road, so that's good for provisioning but it is late Saturday,
and nothing is open on Sundays so we will be here until at least Monday afternoon the 26th.
After provisioning all morning, we head to the fishing port to re-fuel. This is quite impressive with some large boats, haulouts, and shore infrastructure here. As soon as we have re-fueled we leave the lovely and very friendly Geraldton for an overnighter to Jurien Bay. The weather is still not that flash.... still some seas running and at times 20 knots plus but what is most noticeable is that suddenly it is so much colder!!!!
We arrive at Jurien Bay in the morning and are pleased to be able to tie up inside the marina, protected by the breakwater. There is not much here, but it is a northern getaway from Perth, so there is a lot of batches and holiday accommodation where the "Perthies" come for the long weekends with their boats and head out fishing off the reefs. We are just glad to be stationary.
After a familiar, not exciting, lumpy 80nm from Jurien Bay, at 1430 we finally pull into Mindarie Marina, Perth.
We are here!!!! Almost exactly 3 months later, from having left Phuket, and almost exactly half way home.