Turns out the VHF radio is fine. As soon as we leave Brambles Cove it comes alive again with chatter. phew!! We motor sailed N past Bond Bay to Carvers Pt. to anchor in a shallow 3-4M sandy bottom area between shore and reefs. Nicely sheltered from N to NE winds we laid out a double anchor. Been wanting to try this for more peace of mind especially after reading: http://www.mysailing.com.au/news/anchoring-safely-an-experienced-cruiser-s-techniques
[left: Breaksea Island close up, right: heading north of Breaksea Islands]
[Looking at Bond Bay & Carvers Pt]
[Evan untying dinghy, right: looking for mouth of river?]
It’s 1pm before we finally have every ready to set out on Dinghy safari up the Davey River. The first hurdle is finding the opening to the river and navigating the reefs and shallow bottom. Slowly slowly edging closer to the shore we finally see the river entrance. Warned about a sand bar we are really cautious. Luckily it is just deep enough for our 3HP Yamaha outboard to chug through unscathed.
We wound our way up the river, a few times not sure where to go as perspective is everything and at times what looks like a dead end was in fact the way to go. Having said that I have to admit that we went all the way up the DeWitt River tributary, thinking to ourselves, “Is this it?” “could this little hill be what someone calls a gorge?” , before we found the correct way to go (hahaha blushing). Once back onto the Davey River it was obvious as it was much much wider.
On the way we saw great flocks of black swan with white wing tips and straight necks. Apparently this is a common breeding area. We saw a snake swimming across the river. Evan motored near to get a closer look and a photo, I was worried it might notice us and come our way. We checked when we got home and found many photos of water no snake and finally one with a snake eureka!
[Can you see the snake ? – right photo]
We make it to the first gorge, it is a big proper gorge, and was breathtaking. You wind your way through feeling wholly insignificant as the cliffs loom up both sides. Taking the time to touch the white walls, quartz like, smooth and very hard, with striations that line up vertically give you the sense the earth was very violent here thrusting land upon its end and balancing sheets against each other. Some trees are hanging on to these walls and surviving whilst others have lost their footing and hang with tree tops south of their root systems. You wonder how they continue to survive is such conditions.
Through the gorge the other side becomes shallow with a sheet of small rapids ahead. We could see the next gorge ahead so inched up to the rapids and noted the lack of water beneath the surface and decided not to push our little motor through, the idea of rowing back several miles didn’t sit too well.
Turned the dinghy for home about 4:00pm and made it back to Nashira almost event free, as we touched mud a few times with the propeller, returning by 5:45pm.
[mouth of the river – sand bar visible on the left]
Neighbours on Sea Echo II came over and introduced themselves, Judy and Greg. We had a good chat. These are the first people we have met in Port Davey. They plan to stay a few weeks and thoroughly explore starting with the Davey River tomorrow.
xoxoxo Kelly & Evan