Tweet Manookatoo Adventures: Manookatoo September cruise

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Manookatoo September cruise

19/9/15, 10.4NM
Half Moon Bay
After a lovely night celebrating end of term with Glenda and Peter, we packed our food and clothes, cast off and headed down the Yarra, bound for who knows where in the next two weeks. Cruising 10.4 nautical miles south, we headed to Sandringham Yacht Club, where we booked into our berth before cruising out and around the corner for a hamburger lunch at Half Moon Bay, a breezy location!
Returning to the Marina we lazed the afternoon away then dressed for a romantic anniversary dinner at Harbour View restaurant with bubbles and a seafood platter to celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary.

20/9/15 15.2NM
Mordialloc Creek
A morning walk to Sandringham then we slipped our mooring again for a trip south east past Black Rock and Beaumaris to enter Mordialloc Creek, 7.6 nautical miles away, where a variety of boats are moored. We cruised out and north again, dropping anchor just below the cliffs of Mentone/Beaumaris, out of the breeze, for a delicious chicken and salad lunch. We are back in Sandringham for a second night tonight, and a relaxing pizza aboard is the order for the evening.

Royal Melbourne Yacht Club, St Kilda
21/9/15 6NM
The wind got up overnight and bounced us around a little in the early hours of the morning, diminishing just after dawn. We cast off just after 8am to beat the change, cruising north to the Royal Melbourne Yacht Club at St Kilda in a fresh northerly breeze. We enjoyed a pleasant walk around St Kilda before the weather deteriorated, returning to Manookatoo for lunch and a lazy afternoon, then a Mexican dinner onshore to celebrate Brett's 27th birthday.

22/9/15 0NM (11.67KM walked)
Just for fun on a windy day
With a strong wind warning issued for Port Phillip Bay, we decided on a land based exploration instead. After a leisurely breakfast, and after the rain and hail stopped, we made our windy way along the pier and caught the number 16 tram down to Balaclava, where we walked along the shopping strip then re-boarded the tram and continued around to Malvern Road/ Glenferrie Road intersection. Changing to the number 72, we travelled along to the Prahran Market, where we alighted and enjoyed a cup of tea, sampled some of the food on offer and bought ourselves some linguini and seafood to cook tonight. Back on the tram around to St Kilda Road where we swapped again to the 16 to finish our circle and battle our way through the gusts and back to the boat, where we dropped off our supplies. 
We waited out the next passing shower, then headed back up to Acland Street, where we enjoyed a counter lunch at the Village Belle Hotel. Then we headed to the supermarket to buy tomorrow night's dinner before returning to Manookatoo - no cruising done today, but plenty of distance covered!

23/9/15 34.3NM
Point Wilson Jetty
The wind did not die down as much as expected overnight but, with the prediction it would do so during the day we cast off just before 8:30am and headed into the bay. It was certainly a rocky start to the trip, with quite a swell tossing us around - like a cork in a bucket of water! After a few hours, as we gained more protection from the Bellarine Peninsula, conditions settled and we cruised along comfortably. 
Geelong Grammar
Limeburners Lagoon
We passed the under-construction Wyndham Marina complex and the under-renovation Point Wilson jetty - at 2.6km long it is quite noticeable. There were only a couple of other vessels out today so it was easy to enter Corio Bay along the shipping channel then head north-west towards the refinery and Geelong Grammar, cruising into the narrow entrance to Limeburners Lagoon, where we picked up a swing mooring, secured ourselves and turned off the engine. It will be much more peaceful here tonight with just a few empty yachts and some sea birds for company but we intend enjoying our roast pork dinner in the solitude.
24/9/15 5NM
We awoke to the sounds of silence; no wind, no traffic noise, just the gentle lapping of water on the hull. After a leisurely breakfast we cast off and headed south across Corio Bay, past the oil refinery and shipping terminals, to the Royal Geelong Yacht Club, our home for the next two nights. 
Royal Geelong
After tying up we headed to the supermarket for some supplies, returning to pack them away then out again for a stroll around the city centre. There is a lot of history in the city of Geelong and nowhere is this better illustrated than in the city's pubs. We enjoyed a drink at the recently restored Lord Nelson, entered a couple of others just for a "look", then returned to the waterfront for lunch at the Fisherman's Pier, where the food was delicious but the service was ordinary! The captain returned from there to Manookatoo, while the first mate explored the shopping centre but bought nothing. A late afternoon drink on the flybridge was followed by a yummy chicken and mango curry and an early night.
25/9/15 0NM (25km cycling)
Another gorgeous start to the day with a walk along the promenade, around the lovely  swimming enclosure and through the botanic gardens, finishing along the elevated Eastern Beach road, with large ornate houses overlooking views across the bay.
After breakfast we took the bikes and headed south along Swanston Street, which has a terrific bike path all the way, across the railway line to the Barwon River. There we followed the well maintained bitumen track along both sides of the river front, past golf clubs, rowing facilities and numerous parks and gardens. There were many families walking, pushing prams or leading dogs, groups of cyclists too, everyone enjoying the outdoors on a sunny spring day.
On completing the 19km loop we rode back up Swanston Street, stopping for a drink at the Elephant and Castle, owned by Mayor and local identity Darryn Lyons. We visited the Diana memorial photo exhibition, on the first floor of the striking old pub. The food looked very appetizing and we will file it away as a must-visit next time we are here!

Instead we returned to Manookatoo for lunch of leftover roast pork with apple and gravy - yummy! - and a well-earned rest. As the sun set we enjoyed another drink on the flybridge then went out to dinner at the yacht club, another fabulous day well spent.

26/9/15 29NM
We returned the yacht club key and cast off the ropes before breakfast, heading out into Corio Bay on a still, sunny morning. Rounding Point Henry we enjoyed breakfast as we cruised along, passing many fishermen in small boats enjoying their Saturday and hoping to reel in a few big ones. 
We cruised along close to the Bellarine Peninsula, exploring but not stopping at Portarlington jetty, passing the wreck of the Paddlesteamer "Ozone" just off Indented Head, and dodging rocky reefs near St Leonard's before cruising down Coles Channel and entering Queenscliff at 12:30.
After a lunch  of leftovers we took a leisurely walk up to the town, meeting Yvonne and Martin in the Main Street and returning to Manookatoo in the late afternoon for drinks on the flybridge and a barbecued steak for dinner. 

27/9/15 0NM (4.5km walking, 15.5kms cycling)
We woke to a thick fog and the sounds of foghorns from Point Lonsdale lighthouse and the Queenscliff ferry. It was a good day to do some laundry! It was also the first day of the Queenscliff Markets, so we made the most of the fresh produce and freshly cooked food as we wandered around munching on a mixed breakfast and waiting for our washing to dry. 

Once the chores were out of the way we set off on our bikes along the foreshore, past the Fort and following the highway before turning south towards Point Lonsdale, stopping at the lookout over The Rip before reaching the lighthouse as the fog lifted. 

We rode back along the foreshore then turned on to the Rail Trail, following the shores of Swan Bay back past the old railway station, the boat ramp and some old fishing warehouses, reaching Manookatoo ready to enjoy a reviving cup of tea. Stowing the bikes away, we cast off, heading less than a nautical mile away, and pulled up a public mooring to spend a relaxing afternoon and  night bobbing up and down opposite the Queenscliff Cruising Yacht Club, enjoying the peace and serenity.

28/9/15 7NM
There was fog overnight and every so often we could hear the mournful sound of the foghorn, but soon after dawn the fog lifted and the sun shone. After breakfast we cast off the mooring and headed down the channel into the bay, cruising east towards Portsea the northeast following the Mornington Peninsula to Sorrento. 

We made our way slowly through all the empty moorings, checking out the mansions on the hills before pulling up at the Sorrento Couta Boat Club jetty for a stroll along the beach and into town, buying some food for dinner and enjoying a seafood lunch at "The Baths" restaurant on the foreshore.
Returning to Manookatoo, we cast off and picked up a public mooring within sight of the ferry terminal and the town jetty, our spot for tonight.

29/9/15 13NM (14km cycling)
The lovely thing about a swing mooring is the gentle movement of the boat, but when the breeze lifts as the tide turns it can be a bit more bumpy - as it was at about 4am! We woke to a freshening breeze and cast off just after breakfast, making our way between the bouys and back into the channel, heading north-east up the bay. 

With the swell coming side on it was a rocking and rolling trip and it was a small relief two hours later to turn into the Martha Cove channel, tying up at the Marina soon after.
After a "leftovers" lunch we set off on our bikes, riding along the pathway next to the canal, then following the foreshore path to Dromana, where we paid a visit to Shaunagh, Mark and the boys, shopped for dinner and returned to the boat. A lovely roast lamb dinner was the order of the evening before bed - no rocking tonight!! 

30/9/15 10NM
There was no sound but the tweeting of nearby birds this morning. We had a lazy time, relaxing the morning away before our cruising guests arrived.
Just after 11:00, Shauna, Mark, Tom and James boarded and we set off, cruising down the canal and turning south, traveling 5NM before dropping anchor just off Rosebud Pier. There we enjoyed a chicken and salad lunch, followed by delicious Apple Slice, watching the ships come down the channel from Melbourne and turning 90degrees to head out of the bay. Cruising back, we were thrilled to spy a dolphin diving through the wake of Manookatoo, following us along until we turned into the canal again. 

After farewelling our guests we hopped on our bikes for a short cycle to Provincia, a well appointed local grocery, buying a few provisions before returning to Manookatoo for sunset drinks on the flybridge then dinner - Nigella's "Slut's spaghetti" - a delicious combination of pantry staples such as sardines, tomatoes and olives served with pasta - yummy!! A clear, starry sky is promising good weather tomorrow.

1/10/15 29.2NM
The captain was up early and keen to be off, so we cruised out of the Marina before 8am and headed north, following the beaches past Mornington and Frankston, entering Patterson River but, with a low bridge even at low tide, going no further. We continued north and anchored off the cliffs of Beaumaris for a hamburger lunch. The sun was very welcome and we made the most of it - the captain even had a swim!! 
Later we cruised north to Sandringham Yacht Club where we tied up, headed to the supermarket for some salmon for dinner, then enjoyed a drink at the Yacht Club as the sun slipped towards the horizon before returning to Manookatoo for a quiet night.

2/10/15 (4km walking, 10.6km cycling) 11NM
With the promise of fine weather and a new Public Holiday declared today, we started with a cycle along the Esplanade to Brighton Yacht Club and a walk along the rock wall around the Marina before returning to Manookatoo for a cruise. It is hard to beat the serenity and clear waters under the cliffs off Beaumaris Bay, so we dropped anchor just east of yesterday's spot and sat back enjoying the sun, a glass or two of wine and a lunch of leftovers - our final chance to empty the fridge before our return to home tomorrow.

3/10/15 10.4NM
We heard the wind building in the early hours of the morning and by the time we were up and about it was time to leave, before it got any stronger. We cast off at 7:10am, with a 20 knot breeze and gusts to 30 knots. We were lucky, it was from the north so we could hug the coast north and miss the worst of it. 
We entered the Yarra soon after 8:30 and started breakfast as we cruised along - not much traffic on the river today!! Passing under the West Gate and Bolte bridges, we tied up at Yarra's Edge before 10:00 - happy to be back but sad our wonderful trip was over.

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