Showing posts from December, 2015

Flinders - 38° 27' 04" S 144° 57' 27" E

Flinders - home for Christmas! Days filled with friends and family, cycling and lazing on beach after beach, the mandatory jumping off the pier, chicken parma at the pub, eating, visiting and a tad too much drinking. Down at the Flinders Pier Hot days means the beach. Which beach depends on the wind, tide and appetite to hike up the sand dunes. McCrae, Flinders Back Beach, Shoreham, Flinders Pier, Fingal...  and we are yet to scratch the surface.  We are noticing how conditioned we are to start a hike by going up, reaching the goal and having an easy skip back to the starting point.  It doesn't work that way when the goal (eg. a sandy beach) is at sea level.  We have to remember to save some energy for the slog out. Un-squished roadside attraction Early bike rides looping though Red Hill, Shoreham, Flinders or Arthur's Seat, Red Hill Flinders. Well maintained, undulating roads with mostly courteous road users.  We both truly appreciate the lack of sand/grit

Bruny Island - 43° 29' 21" S 146° 08' 39" E

Another ocean, another island. Despite having beautiful white, sandy beaches and crystal, blue seas, the water temperature is a little brisker at these latitudes!  We are staying at Richard's shack at Apollo Bay on the D'Entrecasteaux Channel, a short ferry ride and a hop, skip and a jump to Hobart. We are enjoying a slow pace with breakfast on the veranda overlooking the water and feasting on Richard's fabulous meals cooked up in the pizza oven (when not a total fire ban!). Echidna A spotted quoll We arrived tired from our trip back from Thailand so spent a lovely first day lazing on the porch, overlooking the natural bush garden that runs down to the sea.  Critters abound.  We have spotted quolls gamely venturing onto the porch, only to scurry away when we move.  Bennetts wallabies lazily hop by and we have visits from the local echidna.  Snake - we think a young tiger... Yesterday, we hiked the 16.9km walk up and back the Labillardiere Peninsula on South

Kuala Lumpur - 02° 44' 43" N 101° 41' 03" E

Back in Malaysia enroute to Melbourne. Our SE Asia trip in summary: Flew to Phuket Sailed to Kuala Lumpur Raced to Langkawi Sailed to Phuket Caught ferry to Langkawi Sailed to Phuket Flew to Kuala Lumpur ...and tomorrow, we fly to Melbourne then to Hobart!

Ao Po Marina - 08° 04' 09" N 98° 26' 32" E

Last night, whist enjoying a fabulous Last Supper, Kokomo was struck by lightning. A very loud bang, sparks showering and rain hammering. We were below, snug in the air conditioning with lights blazing and every device connected to wifi. This morning, in the cold, hard light of day, we discovered Kokomo had lost all her nav instruments, AIS, VHF radio, auto helm and the deck lights. We motored into Ao Po Grand Marina where calls were made to surveyors and insurance companies. It appears to have been a very expensive bolt from the heavens and Julie and Mark will be enjoying the luxury at Ao Po for some time while repairs are made. Ao Po is where we farewell Kokomo so like rats leaving a sinking ship, we head back to Australia. Thanks Julie and Mark hosting such a fabulous adventure - we look forward to many more! Sean found another place to do laps Mark and Julie looking over the marina

Ko Muk - 07° 19' 37" N 91° 16' 01" E

the lovely Kokomo On the last night we were in Langkawi, we met an Australian couple sailing a boat with a Canadian flag and got to chatting with them.   Mark is a master mariner and has spent most of his life on large container and cargo vessels.   Julie, his wife, is new to the cruising life but game to join Mark to live aboard Kokomo, a 60 foot Cooper sloop that they bought in Vancouver.   They started living aboard in June and are now retired and exploring the Singapore/Malaysia/Thailand area.   They let us tour their lovely boat, fitted with Canadian maple and many luxuries that would make life aboard very pleasant.   How excited do you think we were when they asked us if we wanted to sail with them from Langkawi to Phuket? This is the absolute BEST Immigration line I've ever been in. We needed to get Popeye up to Kata Beach (on Phuket) for Craig and his charter group first, so having done that and spent some time on the island, we then needed to get bac

Ko Lipe - 06° 29'16" N 99° 18'29" E

 Ko Lipe, the start of the Andaman Route and our farewell (for a day or two) to Thailand.  Immigration on the beach and the very best line-up I have ever been in!

Krabi Boat Lagoon - 08° 00' 37" N 98° 57' 41" E

Popeye raced The Kings Cup under charter by a boatload of Russians. With a few professionals onboard, she was put through her paces and the sail wardrobe suffered another casualty - the heavy spinnaker.  With a spare in the storage at Krabi, we volunteered to do the seven-hour return trip so Craig could continue his owner's obligations with Popeye. This time, on land We headed out through the craziness of peak hour traffic. Scooters piling out of side streets, cars passing on both left and right, across double lines, on blind corners.... Despite the chaos, we thought the drivers far more courteous than in the order of Canada and Australia. Oncoming car on your side of the road, threatening a head-on?  No problem.  Just slow down so he can get back onto his side of the road. No fists shaking, horns blaring in anger or obscene gestures. Our route took us through the stunning Phang Nga province with its towering limestone monoliths soaring above palm and rubber plantations.