Day 22&23 – POWB Marina to Maria Island, via Kettering, Friday 21st & 22nd

We are back!!!

Our flight back to Hobart left Sydney at 7:35am.  Who booked that so early!!  Sheesh….  (shhh…I did it.)  Working late the night before saw a 4:30am wake up difficult, especially as its raining outside.   Sleeping during rain always seems blissful.  Why is that?

Anyway our flight was on time and we are on our way back to beautiful Tasmania.

At the marina by 10:30am it sure was good to see Nashira.   We borrowed the marinas car to do some food shopping and by 2:30 we were well provisioned, watered and raring to head off to Kettering to have dinner with our bro Frank before heading off for the Denison Canal at Dunalley in the morning.

The trip to Kettering started out with very little W. wind but a great outgoing tide.

We hit 8 knots in Nashira at one stage.  Woohoo lets goooooo……..  The flip side is when we are out of the tide stream we would slow down to 3 knots.  Oh well.   So we ended up motor sailing down past Hobart city and Derwent Sailing Squadron.

That’s when the wind really started.   The further south we went the heavier the wind and harder the wind gusts.   By the time we reached D’entrecasteaux channel we had winds up to 25 knots, mind you it came in gusts then would disappear for a few minutes then return give us a boost.    We reefed both the main and head sails as the wind increased.  It was a good call.

Here is the Ferry to Bruny from the outside!

Once into Kettering and sheltered by the surrounding hills the winds fully abated and we were able to slowly make our way to the marina checking everything out.   Frank watched us floating in and met us at the T-head, he also negotiated with a fellow sitting on his yacht ‘Columbo 2’ to allow us to tie up along him as there was no free space.

We had dinner at the Kettering Oyster Cove Inn.  It is a great place to eat but had some very limited hours that people should know about.   The main restaurant is closed by 7pm generally and the pub closes by 9pm.    When the main restaurant is closed you are moved to the bar eating area.   The food is the same and the views are good but more of a pub atmosphere.  At 8:50 the lights start going out and you are hurried up to finish drinks very expertly.   Probably good for social conduct,  no overly drunk people but not so good if you want to spend an evening out hanging with friends.

Day 23 – Kettering to Maria Island

We Left Kettering just after 7:30am after refueling at the wharf.  Once again almost no breeze just a light Westerly 0-5 knots at the most.   The marina looked peaceful and calm.

We motored out of Kettering past the Iron Pot at the head of the river Derwent and across Norfolk Bay to the Denison Canal.

On the way there was a cheeky seal sun baking and floating along.   He poked his little face up to look at us then back to floating.

Waiting at the Dunalley Bay (west) side of the Denison Canal for One hour and Fifteen minutes after high tide (Hobart).  {The tide runs into Blackman Bay for 2 hours and 16 minutes after high tide Hobart per the bridge transit instruction sheet we previously downloaded from MAST online.)   We found if we wait over an hour the rush into Blackmans bay has calmed down and with a reasonably high tide our 1.95 metre draft will get over the sand bar with no worries.

A sail boat is heading our way.  I wonder if they are going to talk to us.

They did!  They are locals (onboard GeeWis) who noticed us sitting and waiting and asked if we would like to follow them through!  Haleluyah Yay!  We waited another 15 or so minutes before getting the all clear to come through from Denison Canal control.

We felt quietly confident that we could have done this crossing on our own but it IS lovely that they offered and that we have the help of locals.

I have to say that the trip from the canal to the first markers for Marion Narrows looks VERY different heading the other direction.     It WAS good to have people to follow who knew what they were doing.    Once we got to the port/starboard markers we were right and transited through the Marion Narrows with no problems.

Through the narrows and in Marion Bay we caught up to GeeWiz to thank them.  The crew told us we might want to head to Riedle Bay on the East side of Maria Island to hide out the SW that is coming early morning.

Thinking that was a good idea we motor sailed up toward Maria Island with a light SW breeze which grew into a 10+ know SE once out of the protection of the surrounding land.  IT is a beautiful day.  Sun between light grey clouds.  When the sun is out it is hot when behind the clouds its cool again.

Rounding the corner into Riedle Bay at 4:30pm, it has taken us 9 hours from Kettering which always surprises me how far places are by boat,  But wow was it worth it.  White sandy beaches, clear blue water.  Stunning place,

We dropped the dinghy in the water with oars as our little outboard motor has sadly seized up from its dunking in Deal Island.    Arm power it is to be.   Not complaining as I need the exercise.

The sand is quite white and in places pockets thick with shells, unbroken by the tide.   Walking up towards the isthmus (still love that word) we wanted to see Chinaman’s bay on the other side.

Heading back to the dinghy we watched the GeeWis crew along a wall of rocks with their dinghy.  Probably hoping to score some Crayfish, or oysters for dinner.  Eventually they dinghied to the beach next to our parked dinghy.  On our return they offered us local advice on where to visit.  It was good hearing their stories, what a tremendous backyard they have to play in!

Back at Nashira Evan and I celebrated with a chips, dried fruit and a beer & apple cider.  Exhausted (not sure why) we hit the sack by 8pm.

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