Broome to Cape Leveque

A croc was sighted in the waves off Cable beach the day we arrived, so the dreams of the kids having their last beach days for some time were dashed.

Arriving at spring tides meant we had 8m difference in tide heights. Visiting Guy and Kat ashore at low tide meant we had to drag the dinghy up 800m of beach so we would still have it at high tide. Not the easiest task I’ve had for some time now and I realised how quickly you become unfit when you only have 13m to walk around.

Sunday the 24th was spent trying to organise our storeroom/spare cabin to give some space for Gilbert and Ursula when they arrive tomorrow (25/7).

Gilbert hired the smallest car he could find, which was a very good thing as it allowed for multiple trips to get the stores and fuel for 2 months in the Kimberley and we always forget at least one thing from our list. After 3 days of reprovisioning and afternoon sunsets, Gilbert realised he would also need to get more wine. I still think its going to be close to a dry ship by the time the float plane comes to Talbot Bay to fly them back to Broome.

Cable Beach sunsets


The Joker
The Joker and Monkeyman enjoy some 80mile muddies

With all we could fit aboard and a lower waterline again, we left Broome on the 30th of July at 0700 with a beautiful 10-15 SE pushing us north at 8-10kn. Gonyonda really does like that wind range. Again, we had whales sighted in every direction, their “blows” usually warning us if any course adjustment was needed. The wind started to ease around 1030 and by 1200 we had glass. I turned one motor on and with the mere threat of this, the seabreeze from the WNW came in at 5-10kn. So with the sails tacked, we were off for an hour until it came more and more north and strengthened so we furled sail and dropped a line. Dinner was caught by Mariko: picture sharks circling as she fought this monster of the shallows, the prized 5 star black spotted tuskfish, endearingly called “bluebone”.(edit) Thanks for that Mari. We then motored the last 4.5Nm to an anchorage NW of Cape Baskerville, hoping this northerly would ease. It didn’t until after dark and left a very unpleasant chop with the tide turning us side on to it. Yuck, is all I have to say about it.

The 31st had wind predicted to be light to nothing. Waking at 0400, and finding 8kn on the anemometer, I thought it best to get going. There are some stronger winds coming and I want to get across King Sound before, if possible. We sailed nicely for the first 27Nm but the Northerly sea breeze came in by 0930 and we had to turn motors on again. I was gazing at our wake, when I saw a very large Dugong surface and begin to follow us. The second time it surfaced I realised that it was a very small humpback, far too young to be travelling alone, so my eyes started darting around for mama, when up she came with a very loud, deep bass growl. “Get back here” she said and baby quickly ceased her chase of Gonyondas slim, playful looking hulls. By 1130 it was strong enough to get sailing again and we made for the bays north of Cape Leveque having passed our intended anchorage of Thomas Bay. We rounded the Cape with calm conditions and let the kids off for an explore and a run on the beach. Tomorrow we head into the Kimberley where phone access is limited so next update may be a while.

Cape Leveque
Officially the start of our Kimberley Cruise

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