November 09, 2010
After a very unpleasant night at Ruby with howling winds and rain we were eager to get going the following morning. The choices were either continue south and take shelter in another reef or west to Hope Isles located 9km off the coast north of the Bloomfield River.
Because we had been at sea for about 6 days and it looked like this next blow was going to be around for a while, we decided on Hope Isles where we could at least get off the boat and explore the islands which we had never been to before.
Tic Tac lead the way and we left around 9am when there was just enough reef to make our way through the coral bommies and back in the deep water. The angle of the sail was not the best and we had large waves hitting us side on, some breaking over the rails and hitting the wheelhouse. The sea water would fill the decks and then drain off through the scuppers until the next soaking. At times both ours and Tic Tic’s keel was visible when we heeled over with the force of the waves.
After about 40km or hanging on with white knuckles, we gladly turned into the relatively calm bay at Hope Isle. There were 3 other vessels there, some anchored, some on the moorings. Luckily there was a mooring available in 6m just off the beach and so we took that one and breathed a sigh of relief glad for that leg of the journey to be over.
There was a prawn trawler anchored in the bay and so we wasted no time in buying some fresh prawns caught the night before. There was another island nearby that was covered in mangroves and so we had visions of munching on juicy mud crabs while we sat out the bad weather.