Wanderer - November 2014

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Commodore's Report

The Commodore and our unpompous circumstances - Opening Sail Past

Hello everyone,

This month, I am concentrating my report on "What happened on Opening Weekend?"

For those unable to be with us on Opening Day, here is a shortened version of the formalities. Vice Commodore Lyn Wallace started proceedings with the traditional "Acknowledgement to Country" and offered a welcome to Mr. Steve Walker, CEO of Yachting Victoria, Mr. Ken Boddinnar ? Regional Officer SES, Mr Bevit Haywood ? Harbour Master Gippsland Ports, Life members of GLYC ? Bill and Jenny Shand, Hal and Elsie Shand, Sandy McLeod, George Seigmann, Past Commodores ? Jacqui Loft, Don Hannington, Chris Avery, James Frecheville, Colin Lamble, Fellow members, Ladies and Gentlemen.
(And apologies were then received from a number of invited guests and members.)

I then went on as follows:

"Well here we are, good morning everyone and welcome to Gippsland Lakes Yacht Club. It is an honour to welcome you all to this our 78th year of sailing on the Gippsland Lakes.

I would like to start this morning by mentioning a little of what is in store for this year. The season's calendar is jam-packed and includes what promises to be a fantastic year of racing for all ages, types of boats and sailing abilities. As well as these "pure racing" events, we have a number of cruises planned to various idyllic spots around the lakes. There is our annual charity sailing day to raise funds for a 'Local, Community Based Charity'. We have reciprocal sailing visits to and from Metung and Loch Sport Sailing Clubs. The Marley Point Overnight Race will finish at the club as usual. And our annual Easter Regatta will again be a spectacle to be enjoyed by the whole Paynesville Community.

GLYC is very proud of our Sailability Program and in 2014/15 our fantastic group of volunteers will again provide a sailing experience for some of the disadvantaged,disabled people as well as school children in our community.

Our training school kicks off in a couple of week's time and is already keenly anticipated by past participants who are continuing and new ones alike. This year we will again be looking to provide a race-training program after Christmas to further develop the skills and enjoyment of our novice sailors.

Discover Sailing Days have been getting more attention over the last couple of years and we expect this to continue with enquiries already coming in. Finally, a lucky winner on Friday night's member draw!

These activities are of course vital to ensure the future membership of our own club as well as the future of yachting itself. If we don't do it we can't expect others to either!

Twenty members have just completed a two day first aid course conducted for us by Federation Tafe and we are looking at other club based training activities including the ever popular Flares and Safety Day; and of course, our ongoing training updates for Powerboat and Rescue boat operators.

The ever-popular Tuesday night Twilight Sternchaser series commences this Tuesday and with a fleet size last year of up to 35 boats we can again anticipate another great season of sailing enjoyment and camaraderie back at the club to enjoy the social buzz and meal.

Friday night is Club Night, of course, and this year through the warmer periods I am encouraging our family members in particular to come down, enjoy what the club has to offer - the BBQ, some social sailing perhaps and, of course, the great company of other members.

Our facilities are now (I believe) second to none and we will continue to build our amenities and assets as well as our reputation of holding a central position both geographically and as a community based resource center within Paynesville. We will see the continued use of our club by other Community groups for their own meetings and activities. Our ability to provide for other events and activities has been further enhanced with yesterday's completed installation of new, state-of-the-art, AV equipment. The word is already out and with 3 weddings and a major Govt. dept. conference booked for the coming months, I think we are just at the beginning!

Exciting? You bet! And I am so proud to be a member of this club. For a club our size to be able to provide such a comprehensive and inclusive program is truly amazing and I would encourage us all to reflect on this and give yourselves a very well earned pat-on-the-back. It must after all be recognised that we are a totally volunteer club and everything I have spoken of is organised and driven by our member volunteers. Again I say Thankyou!"

(top right) The Commodore and our unpompous circumstances - Opening Sail Past

(above right) Finally, a lucky winner on Friday night's member draw!

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Proper salutes

I then called upon the CEO of Yachting Victoria, Mr. Steve Walker, who kindly offered to say a few words. Steve came up to Paynesville with some of his family to join in the celebration of our Season Opening. Steve then addressed the audience and I have included Steve's address at the end of my report.

After thanking Steve for his address, I continued...

"Last year I mentioned some of the reasons for what I have called the club's iconic presence here in Paynesville and in the wider world of sailing in Victoria, Australia, and indeed around the world. Firstly, the longevity of the club - as I just indicated, this is our 78th sailing season! I alluded to our idyllic geographic location with some of the World's best sailing waters (many would argue the best)? In the end though, what makes this club what it is comes down to the membership, the people who make up the club - both past and present. Last year at this time, we heard from some of our own (present) club members to highlight and celebrate the diversity of our club.

This year I am again stepping slightly outside the more conventional Opening Speaker format to again provide a closer link to Club Membership, what GLYC is all about and how being a GLYC member can have a lifelong effect on people. To do this I have asked one of our past members to speak.

The idea of asking a past member to speak at our Opening Day was perhaps a little more daunting than you might first imagine. We have so many members who have gone on to great things in the world of competitive sailing, Ocean Cruising, not to mention ongoing involvement in administration, training and organisational tasks.

For all that I do hope everyone enjoys hearing from our speaker today. He is perhaps someone that I (may) still have a little influence over and so I was able to secure his agreement to speak for the price of a Plane Fare and the promise of a roast dinner before he flies home. Is it a bit indulgent to ask your own son to speak? Probably, but Phillip is well known to many GLYC members and was part of our family membership for about 15 years before he moved away first to University and then to Adelaide where he now lives with his wife Zoe and his work as a Prosthetist / Orthotist at the Adelaide General Repatriation Hospital. Grace, Ebony and Albert Oldfield prepare for a sail with Johnno on Ghost on Discover Sailing Day

But I know his other passion is still sailing and it is of that, that I have asked Phillip to talk about today.

In short, the brief I gave Phillip was simply:
Tell us something of your life's journey through sailing... Give us a few photos to illustrate your story... And what has or does GLYC mean to you?

Take it away Phillip!"

Again I have included Phillip's address at the end of my report.

After thanking Phillip for his address, I continued...

"So in a moment, we will all take a break and enjoy a delicious luncheon - a big thank you to all who have contributed to it.

Before that however, I will pass you over to our Sailing Captain, James Frecheville to brief us on the sailpast and Commodore's Race. I remind you to join us here in the bar after the race to catch up with friends both old and new.

I thank all members and guests for being here today. I hope you have enjoyed hearing a little from Phillip and his thoughts about sailing and what GLYC means to him. And finally, I throw out an official invitation to everyone to join us on any occasion throughout the season be it yachting or socially related.

I will see you shortly on the water, but now here is Sailing Captain James."

And so the day proceeded with a delicious luncheon and the wonderful spectacle of the sailpast where a total of 45 boats all presented a "salute to the Commodore" (who was very proudly stationed on the 'Wanderer', kindly on loan to us for the day by members Prue and Neale Taylor).

The first heat of the Commodore's Trophy Series then followed. On Sunday we saw heats 2 and 3 of the Series and a fabulous day was had by all. Look for the results elsewhere in this edition.

And so we start the new season! I welcome everyone to it and commend to you all, the preseason, behind-the-scenes work, (particularly that of your committee), that has got us to this point.

So until I speak to you next, may you continue to have calm seas and fair winds from aft of the beam --David

(top right) Proper salutes

(above right) Grace, Ebony and Albert Oldfield prepare for a sail with Johnno on Ghost on Discover Sailing Day

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In this issue:

Sailing Calendar

The Lemon stars in Opening Weekend Commodore's Trophy race start

Sun. 2 1400 Divisional Heats 3 and 4 Divisional Waza Rager
Tues. 4 1715 Melbourne Cup Twilight Extravaganza Mara
Sun. 9 1400 LBB Personal Handicap Race 2 Lifebuoy and Bell (LBB) Performance Kalimna
Tues. 11 1715 Twilight Sailing Mystique
Sun. 16 1400 LB Crawford Race LB Crawford Trophy Saracen
Tues. 18 1715 Twilight Sailing Waza Rager
Sun. 23 1400 Divisional Heats 5 and 6 Divisional Raptor
Tues. 25 1715 Twilight Sailing Danish Pastry
Sun. 30 1400 LBB Personal Handicap Race 3 Lifebuoy and Bell (LBB) Performance Scorpio

Tues. 2 1715 Twilight Sailing Wind Quartet
Sat. 6 1000 Cruise to Nicholson
Sun. 7 Return from Nicholson
Sun. 7 CG Drummond Race, CG Drummond Trophy Growler
Tues. 9 1715 Twilight Sailing Scorpio
Sun. 14 1400 Divisional Heats 7 and 8 Divisional Chibizulu
Tues. 16 1715 Twilight Sailing Christmas Break-up dinner Anarchy / Weapon of Choice
Sun. 21 1000 Loch Sport and return Race Joy Croft Trophy Wow
Christmas Break

January, 2015

Sun. Jenny and Lyn rub shoulders with Governor General, Peter Cosgrove, while boys compete on Lake Burley Griffin at ACT State ff championshi

4 1400 Three-Bay Race Chris Hawkins Trophy Yardstick Longnose
Tues 6 1715 Twilight Sailing Growler
Fri. 9 1000 Cruise to Metung Yacht Club (MeYC)
Sat. 10 1000 Metung and Return
Sun. 11 1400 LBB Personal Handicap Race 4 Lifebuoy and Bell (LBB) Performance Triple Expresso
Tues. 13 1715 Twilight Sailing Raptor
Sun. 18 1400 Divisional Heats 9 and 10 Divisional Ghost
Tues. 20 1715 Twilight Sailing Legless
Sun. 25 1400 Female Skippers Fundraising Day Australia Day Trophy
Mon. 26 1400 Australia Day Race (LBB Personal Handicap Race 5), Australia Day Trophy
Lifebuoy and Bell (LBB), Yardstick and
Performance Nitro
Tues. 27 1715 Twilight Sailing Saracen

(top right) The Lemon stars in Opening Weekend Commodore's Trophy race start

(above right) Jenny and Lyn rub shoulders with Governor General, Peter Cosgrove, while boys compete on Lake Burley Griffin at ACT State ff championshi

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Sailing/Social Calendar

Kitchen antics on Opening Day...always a delectable feast

Club night up in the bar. Come and have a barbie or bring take out and enjoy your evening at the club.

Tuesday, 14 October - Twilight Sailing Start times commencing around 5:15 pm. Twilight meals will be served. Be sure to let the kitchen know if you require a vegetarian meal. (Make note of it on the sign-on sheet.
Note: There will be no Twilight Sail on 30 December.

Sat. 6/7 December - Cruise to Nicholson

Fri. 9 January - Cruise to Metung Sailors can sail back with the fleet on Sunday as part of the Metung and Return race

Sun. 25 January - 1400 Female Skippers Fundraising Day

(top right) Kitchen antics on Opening Day...always a delectable feast

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Commodore's Report, cont.

Steve Walker's address

Story Teller has a winning story to tell

"Many thanks for the invitation to attend, the warm welcome including to two of my kids, Lachie and Millie, as well as the opportunity to say a few words. It is fantastic to make the trip to Paynesville and GLYC in particular. It makes a Melbournian wonder why they don't live here in paradise and enjoy all of the benefits, including a great sailing club in an amazing location, of such a lifestyle.

Yachting Victoria has 90 member clubs of differing shapes and sizes. GLYC is no doubt a leading club; arguably the state's strongest regional one.

When we look at YV's objectives as stated in its mission statement and strategic plan, it is easy to see why we rate GLYC so highly. The factors that we clearly see that align GLYC to YV's objectives include, however are not limited to --
* A clear participation focus.
* An effort to satisfy and retain current members.
* A Discover Sailing culture, and program.
* Tackers.
* An inclusion focus including a leading Sailability program.
* A pride in the high quality facilities and location
* Excellent regattas and events
* Quality people in the various club roles
* And most importantly, a great balance between community/social engagement and competition/racing. Stoked and stacked

It is a good thing if a club has to ask, "are we a social club that sails and races, or are we a sailing and racing club that socialises?" I think this is the case with GLYC as the club covers both areas brilliantly.

Thanks again for the opportunity to attend and all the best for a great season."

Steve Walker
Yachting Victoria

(top right) Story Teller has a winning story to tell

(above right) Stoked and stacked

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Commodore's Report, cont.

Phillip Parish's address

Phillip's first boat

"Thank you Mr. Commodore,

As I look around the room I can see so many familiar faces, faces that I grew up sailing with and against as well as a lot of new faces. To cover my brief I've tried to capture a bit of an overview of some of the sailing in my life.

I was born in Portland and began my sailing on our Castle 650, Chatelaine, which dad put together from a hull and deck. However, I think I spent most of my time sleeping in sail bags and probably didn't really take much in.

When I was 2 I got my first boat, Petite Chatelaine, and I think this really started to kick off my love of sailing. As you can see she was a very stable vessel, maybe a little underpowered but still a lot of fun.

When we moved to Paynesville I think it was inevitable that I was going to sail. I started on a Mirror dinghy called Golden Dragon that we ended up buying and later was my first experience of boat maintenance. Dad had always believed that it was important to learn the crewing in the front and the steering at the back of the boat, however, when I got to the point of heading to Melbourne to do the interschool regatta, the mirror wasn't really an option and thus I moved into a Sabre.

When I moved into Sabres so did all my sailing mates and we all of a sudden had a fleet of 13 boats and our own division. It wasn't uncommon for us to come down to the club after school, pull our boats out from under the club, setup and go sailing.

During year 10 I was selected to do a voyage on Young Endeavour. I was also lucky enough to be selected to, what the full time crew called, the glamour cruise from Cairns to Townsville. When we got under way they gave us all a briefing including that we would be likely to be hammered about day 3 with a nice tropical storm. This is where I first discovered the wonders of seasickness.

I don't have many pictures from my teenage years' sailing, but those who knew me then will understand that I grew out of Sabres in a couple of ways and this led to crewing on a number of the bigger boats in the club. These included a season on an Endeavour 26 with Leigh Robinson, multiple races with Lofty on his Elliot 7, as well as continuing to race with dad and even when dad was away, very carefully taking All In Blue racing with friends. I did a couple of Marley Points on different things and just generally played on and in boats. During this time I learnt a huge amount including the team work involved to make a boat not just sail along but go fast; how to read the weather and water and sail smarter; as well as a deeper understanding of the concepts of sail trim, boat handling and concentration; not to mention the vocabulary used when things are done right as well as when things aren't going quite as smoothly as the person at the back would like!!

Like a lot of young sailors in country areas, when I finished school, I moved to go to uni. At this time I got a call from Brian Carroll who told me that Lynn had decided to retire from the front of his 15 and was I keen to crew for him? I had 3 seasons with Brian and we competed at states and nationals and had some great fun together.

When in my final year at uni, I went to New Zealand for a 3-month placement. On day 1 of placement I met a below-knee amputee and as we were chatting about hobbies, we got on to sailing. Vaughan scribbled a marina number down, Y28, and said that he always had room on his boat for Wednesday night twilights and that if I was keen I should come down. I did go down and as I walked along the marina past the little boats in row A B C D and then the bigger boats through row H I, and when I finally got to Y28, I found that Vaughan was the boat manager of SABABA, a Farr52 IRC. During my 3-month uni placement learning as much about prosthetics and orthotics as I could, I spent Wednesday nights doing the twilights. I did Mount Gay rum races on Friday nights and then club races Saturdays and Sunday. I also delivered SABABA to the Bay of Islands and competed in the Bay of Islands regatta and Kaiwai island race week.

After I graduated, I moved to Adelaide. As well as still sailing the 15 with Brian for major events, I started sailing in Adelaide. Clones, Dad and Phil, on Three Cool Cats

I rocked down to the Royal South Australian Yacht Squadron for a twilight race and met Ian, the new sailing coordinator who had just received the keys to Squadron Mentor, a Sydney 32, that was designed to be a bridging boat to help youth move from dinghy sailing to keel boat sailing. As I got chatting with Ian it became quite clear that he was going to need a hand to get the program going and he also hadn't really spent any time steering anything bigger than a J24. Having completed my instructors certificate while at GLYC we discussed the potential of coordinating the boat together. Over the following 2 years we successfully graduated 36 crew between 16 and 24 through our competent keelboat crew course and managed to stitch up the division 1 club IRC championship 2 years running. We also secured sponsorship from Musto to take a youth team to New Zealand to compete in the Australasian Platu championships where we managed to finish mid fleet.

When Squadron mentor was no longer available I became the strategist on 3 Cool Cats, a Farr 42 IRC. The owner was a pretty busy guy and when he wasn't around I had the pleasure of taking the boat out to ensure we completed all races during the season. During the following 2 years we raced 75 races each season including Geelong week and Adelaide to Port Lincoln offshore races, Lincoln week and many other short course regattas in SA.

In 2009 I was asked to sail the Flying 15 Worlds at Royal Victoria Yacht Club with Clive Arnold on his classic IFFY and after a shaky start in the pre- worlds, we came together and finished second in the classic division beaten by a British team and only 1 point ahead of Les who I'll be sailing with this weekend.

Currently I'm sailing on a J111. It's a 36-foot racer cruiser with big asymmetric kites and a very fast planing hull. Again the owner Mark is a very busy guy with lots of interstate travel and I have the privilege of taking the boat out when he's not available. I also do the tactics and crew management for the boat which can be like herding cats at times but is great fun.

As a kid you don't appreciate what you have. I grew up with the ability to sail all summer and ski all winter and that was just how it was. Having now moved away and sailing all over the place, I take every opportunity to come back and sail at home when I can. The last time I was home was for the 50th Flying 15 state title which was a huge success and I was fortunate enough to hold off some stiff competition from James and Ben and John and Nolene to take home the state title classic trophy.

When Dad asked me to speak today I was a bit hesitant at first. I'm by no means a star sailor and I'm by no means the most successful sailor to come out of Gippsland Lakes Yacht Club. After speaking with a few people, however, I came to realise that the honour of being able to stand here today and talk about my experiences and the opportunities that I've had in sailing, are all thanks to the absolute grounding and building of foundations in the sport. Dad ran the junior program on Sunday mornings at GLYC for many years; this and training programs such as country sail, were instrumental in kick starting my sailing.

Dad's guidance and the opportunities that senior members of GLYC provided, have also helped me develop the skills and confidence to jump on boats all over the place and competently do the job required. It has also given me the drive and desire to ensure that I coach and train future sailors to hopefully love the sport of sailing as much as we all do. And for all this I am so thankful. GLYC was an extension of my family when I was growing up and I feel that this culture continues to grow.

I'd like to say a huge thank you to (of course, my family) and the many Gippsland Lakes Yacht Club members (past and present) for sharing their love of sailing with me and I'm sure this will also be the case for future sailors of the club.

And without further ramblings, it is my great pleasure and privilege to hereby declare the 2014-2015, 78th Gippsland Lakes Yacht Club sailing season, open. "

Phillip Parish

(top right) Phillip's first boat

(above right) Clones, Dad and Phil, on Three Cool Cats

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Division 1

A close start in Sunday's Div 1 LBB personal handicap race

It has been a great start to the season for the expanding division one fleet. Welcome back to Rod and Wendy Gardiner in their new boat, Reliance 17. John and Noelene are going well in Molly "O'. There is another boat soon to make its presence known. David Adams has recently purchased Gunnadoo. It is hoped that we will see Andrew Peck out later in the season, as well.

GLYC had three Flying Fifteens represented in the ACT state titles held on October the 15th on the always challenging Lake Burley Griffith. Well done to all three with the Craig Rainey 4th, Brian Carol 7th and Trevor Williams 8th.

In our club racing we have had 6 to 7 division one boats on the start line which is great to see. First off was the Commodore's Cup which was a Personal Handicap race. Brian and Kelvin took out the honours for division one with a 2nd. On October the 19th the divisional heats 1 and 2 were raced in moderate to light and shifty conditions. There were 7 division one boats in a closely fought set of races. Craig and Ian Rainey finished with 1st and 2nd followed by Bill Shand 2nd and 4th and Brian Carol two and third.

The first race in the Lifebouy and Bell series was held on October 26th and sailed in light to moderate conditions.

On handicap Nitro went really well with Mark and Anthony taking out 3rd. The next division one boat was John and Noelene in Molly "O', and then our division took out the next four places. It looks like it will be an exciting and competitive division fleet this season.


(top right) A close start in Sunday's Div 1 LBB personal handicap race

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Division 2

A boisterous Div 2 start

A start of yet another season... A couple of "Blow Outs" not unexpected at this time of year, however combined with Tuesdays we have managed to get a fair bit on the water. The usual suspects are starting to show up, in particular, a very "slippery" Status Slipstream. Our last year's champ, "Chippi", has some serious competition so far; however, we understand that the recent Mexico trip by skipper and crew has resulted in a big boat acquisition, to be sailed home, we understand in the new year, well done.

Tuesday nights continues to be our draw card; 28 boats last Tuesday and, may I say, the majority areTrailables. Competition is just as intense as the round the buoy men; just listen to the post race analysis in the bar.

No mention of Tuesdays can be made without our collective thanks to all those unpaid people who man (and woman) boats, bars, kitchens, and to our handicapper whose skill encourages more boats on the water and enables anyone a chance for a win.

Mention should also be made of our boat parking markers... Pavers have been laid to better identify the areas to put our boats. This relay has resulted in an additional two spaces being made available. The pavers will be dug in and will make the space and angle more identifiable to all.

That's it from me,
CU out there

(top right) A boisterous Div 2 start

Division 4

The secretary spied this dubious looking<br /> vessel/restaurant under construction in<br />Vietnam

The season is underway and the cats are slowly emerging. They were represented on opening weekend by Karma Cat who finished the Commodore's stern-chaser in style by passing almost the entire fleet on the run home to the finish, to end up 8 seconds behind the winner Spindrift.

For the first LBB race three Mozzies took part. Although the personal handicaps had them all at the rear end of the results B-Alert and Karma Cat had a very close race with B-Alert breaking away early and Karma Cat catching up later and finally beating the B over the line by just 20 seconds.

The Victorian Spinnaker state titles will be on at McRae next weekend so the GLYC Mozzies will be there (and the pressure is on for Gary to get Still Bitten on the water). This weekend at McCrae is traditionally blown-out for at least one day. There now I've said it we should be assured of some light winds :)


(top right) The secretary spied this dubious looking
vessel/restaurant under construction in

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Continued tales of Slinky Malinky

The Big Island is Still on the Left

Butty Harbour 20 miles from Esperance.  Sand dunes or winter snow?

The big island is still on the left, although I was somewhat surprised that it hadn't moved a little to the west after four days of relentless easterly wind and rain in Albany upon my return. The south west endured a battering not seen before as a deep low deepened and the hail just got bigger.

Before I left Paynesville on Wednesday afternoon the forecast gave me little confidence that I would get out of Princess Royal Harbour before the following Monday. So we hired a car and did the tourist stuff. As you do. An old sailing mate Gary and his daughter Bianca had joined me for this part of the Slinky cruise.

Albany was gearing up for a centenary celebration of the departure of the troop ships in 1914 bound for the conflict of WW1. For many of the thousands of soldiers to set sail from Albany it was to be the last time they saw Australia and we witnessed a mad rush of infrastructure projects being completed in time for the main event. We held no thought of staying around for the festivities although with rolling rain squalls there was little incentive to set sail.

To enable me to stay in the open marina at the Princess Royal Sailing Club, I had become a member of the club and on my return after five months absence Slinky was still where I had left her but with a bit of bark off on a rubstrake and at the stern where a jetty pier won when a line chafed though during an out of season gale from the east that rattled everyone's cage. One section of the pier leading out to our boat was at a decidedly precarious angle courtesy of a big old boat and that same gale. Unfortunately that boat didn't stay afloat.

The members we met offered great hospitality and after a slow cooked braised beef cheek dinner and copious amounts of fine shiraz at the club I was invited to hang onto the mainsheet on a Mumm30 for the Saturday race. You know the kind. Start is at 2pm and this is the course. The course took us out into King George Sound and uphill in 25 knots of wind and passing showers. This was just hard work but the ride home under asymetric kite was even more so. We only put her on her side once and the ride rated as fast and frightening. We didn't win nor did we break anything so it was counted as a good day out. The ff's stayed in the flat (ish) water of the harbour and reveled in the conditions.

Then as at all YC's we all did the post race stuff. Gary was glad he declined an offer to be ballast on another boat citing the need to spend some time with his daughter. He felt he would have plenty of time under sail in the coming fortnight.

On Sunday we drove a coastal tourist route stopping at all the scenic points to look out into the angry Southern Ocean. I commented that I was glad I was not out there going either way. After a very wet and wild night snatching at the mooring piles we slipped the lines and headed over to town after our hectic weekend for final provisioning and a quiet anchorage. It was not to be; but, there was a fine spot to drop the hook just outside the harbour in the shallows and lee of some sandhills in King George Sound. At least we had got out of town.

Tuesday morning brought lighter winds and we sailed under spinnaker south and east towards Two Peoples Bay and a fine anchorage. Once there and with an updated weather forecast we decided to move on another twenty miles to a land locked river anchorage suitable for weathering the soon to arrive easterly blow. At this time of year the winds jump from west to east with abandon and we just had to work them as best we could. Waychinichup River anchorage, WA, not far from Albany

I had no intention of bashing to weather, unless there was no option. We had an option. It was called Waychinicup River, open to the Southern Ocean but with no bar at entrance. We had been advised not to attempt the entrance in an established swell nor to try and leave if one developed while inside. It was good advice and we sat out the first of many blows, this time watching wind driven seas crash around the 50m wide river mouth. The fishing was good and we dined well.

Wind was light on departure a full day later and the confused seas just made the motorsailing intolerable. We hung in and passed inside some islands before the wind freshened and the kite was hoisted. Soon the kite was retrieved and followed a succession of shortening of sail as we ran east towards Bremer Bay. There we anchored inside a little fishing boat harbour just meters from the beach as the now 25 knot winds buffeted the boat. We were safe.

By climbing a nearby hill we were able to access the internet and get a weather forecast and some observations from further west. The weather for following day looked promising and we needed a good window for the next leg. By 0530 next day it had all changed. The BoM had got it right but the timing was out. It happens. So instead of broad reaching and then with sprung sheets the last 30 miles to Investigator Island, where nearly 200 years ago Finders sought refuge, we were faced with it on the nose or worse for the 50+ miles. Unless I can point the boat where I want to go I really am not interested, and, so it was as we anchored across the bay only 4 miles away all before 0630 hours. It turned out to be a good call.

As we departed Peppermint Beach next morning the autopilot went AWOL so we had to endure a day on the helm motorsailing for 50 odd miles to our next safe anchorage from the west in Starvation Bay. No chance of that happening as we caught fish enroute. Starvation Bay was a gem upon arrival late afternoon in a light easterly which had headed us at every turn. Here anchored in shallows of the Southern Ocean we could look to sea and be out of the swell. The water was crystal so we swam and watched the sunset over the protecting sandhills.

A westerly was forecast and arrived as expected. We were now traversing unsurveyed waters so a very good look out was required. Sighting the many offlying rocks was quite simple given the size of the swell and breaking seas. We just wandered through the paddock with rising winds and seas under mostly triple reefed main and small headsail rolled out. Clearing the last headland before Butty Harbour was a tad more than exhilarating and it was with some relief that we rounded a short rocky isthmus and settled in the lee of huge sand dunes and relatively quiet water. We were exhausted after averaging 8.4 knots and having to steer in the uncomfortable seas. It was not a pleasant night rolling around but I was glad not to be in a monohull.

With less than 20 miles to sail to our destination of Esperance we departed next morning and motorsailed through the western approach and islands of Recerche Archipelago. It was a blue sky day. Esperance Bay Yacht Club has a prime foreshore spot with beachfront right in the heart of town. The members all seem to have a big heart too as they helped sort a mooring so we could safely leave the boat until after Easter next year when I plan to return, and after some much needed repairs and replacement of now 14 year old rigging, continue on keeping the big island on the left. Someone has to sail the boat home.

(top right) Butty Harbour 20 miles from Esperance. Sand dunes or winter snow?

(above right) Waychinichup River anchorage, WA, not far from Albany

Junior exploits

From Minnow to....what!!!  Taj does it all.

Taj, Steve & Sharna just returned back from a fabulous trip to NZ. In between some great fly fishing and sight seeing, they were able to get out on the water in Auckland and on the Bay of Islands - just awesome. Taj also met Joey Allen, Team NZ coach & crew member from their 95 Americas Cup win.

(top right) From Minnow to....what!!! Taj does it all.

Discover Sailing Day a success

A busy foreshore and junior helpers

So many members were out in force to welcome visitors on Sunday, 26 Oct., on Discover Sailing Day. With their gift bags and caps in hand, people got to go out on the water in big boats as well as dinghies. Our juniors were especially busy with the influx of kids who got out on the water and who almost all signed up for sail training that morning. A sausage sizzle rewarded visitors and members alike. Once again Lyn did a fabulous job with the day. It's how our club grows and prospers!

(top right) A busy foreshore and junior helpers

Sail Training blazing along

The Swimming Test or intercepted before Christmas Island

We had a busy day this Sunday, 9 November, at the club with Sail Training commencing. A perfect morning of light breeze to allow the kids a classroom briefing, then hit the water before their swim test...The beach was a buzz with nearly 30 Juniors enjoying the first session of the seven-week program. How exciting, as some of these kids will be the future of our club...

(top right) The Swimming Test or intercepted before Christmas Island

Gippsland Lakes Yacht Club

P.O. Box 194, Paynesville VIC 3880

Club phone03 5156 6864

Flag Officers

CommodoreDavid Parish5156 7523 / 0437 516 666
Vice CommodoreLyn Wallace0414 292 289
Rear CommodoreJames Frecheville5156 7103 / 0412 979 824
Sailing CaptainJames Frecheville 5156 7103 / 0412 979 824


SecretaryRuss Peel5156 6691 / 0408 589 805
TreasurerJenny Brown0403 819 635
Sailability OfficerAndrew Thistlethwaite5156 0141
Immediate Past CommodoreJacqui Crawford0468 987 684
Publicity and WandererChristie Arras5156 7861
Club HouseDave Bacon5156 7524
TropiesLou Hill0418 580 780
BoatsAndrew Somerville5156 1118
Training SchoolSharna Baskett0409 207 331
Training SchoolJess Heaney0403 856 803