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_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Marcy home Walvis Bay Angling Club club AFASyn Ushuaia Marcy and crew

Friday, September 26, 2008

Leaving the Land of OZ

Darwin sun rise

Editors note: This posting was written on Aug 1, but only now is internet access available to post the images.

Today, we visit Darwin Customs to clear out of Australia. We plan to head west across the Indian Ocean, stopping at a few reefs and islands along the way. Marcy is well prepared. We’ve renewed some important systems. We have a new head…

New head Darwin

We have used some bits of PVC pipe to make a temporary stuffing box for the rudder shaft.

Rudder gland

Marcy has never had a way to prevent leaking here, and as the miles go by the bearing has worn and the leaking has gotten worse. The correct repair would be to lift the boat, remove the rudder and install a “real” seal, but haulouts aren’t easy here in Darwin.

Life at anchor in Darwin has been wonderful. The bay is quite shallow by cruising boat standards, and the tides are huge, but the anchorage is spacious and the weather is wonderful. The Darwin Sailing Club offers a temporary membership and a fine outdoor restaurant, a bar, water and showers are all offered.

DSC beach

Sailing dinghies thread their way through the anchored boats every day.

Dinghys Darwin

cat Darwin

With the big tide range and many sand bars it pays to be very careful moving around the bay.

friends high and dry Darwin

When we arrived in Darwin, a fleet was assembling for a rally to Indonesia.

Darwin fleet at anchor

Just before the departure of the rally fleet, there were close to 200 sailboats at anchor. Even so, we often see turtles, dolphins, and dugongs. A big croc was sighted a couple of times.

Dugong and baby 2

Dugong and baby 1

We have a challenge with some less welcome wildlife that arrived onboard Marcy. We have found a couple of gigantic, beautifully colored cockroaches. Very pretty, but they are not welcome.

roach

With a big fleet, the social life was active.

Friends Darwin

We watched the comings and goings of a big navy group, and heard on the radio warships from OZ, Indonesia, Pakistan, Japan, and the US. A large American hospital ship arrived.

USMS Mercy Darwin

There was always activity on the beach. A steel boat, never finished, was launched and sunk for a fish attracting reef.

Hulk Darwin

Our friends beached their cat for repairs.

Kassoumay on beach

The club uses a full size tractor to launch coach boats and big trailer boats.

DSC tractor launch

After all of the activity, it will be good to return to the beauty and solitude of life at sea.

sunrise Arafura sea

Sunset Arafura Sea

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