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  1. #1

    Whitsundays Passage Advice

    Hey guys,

    The partner and I are off on my dream trip of camping on Hook Island in the Whitsundays. We've been hoping for good weather and it doesn't look too bad. My concern is crossing the Molle and Whitsunday Passage channels. I have a 5.5m center console, with pretty high sides (although it is quite open). The forecast for the day we're heading over at the moment is 16kts NW with around 1m of swell. I have done some research and when we make the trip the tide will be coming in preventing the sloppy wind vs tide scenario, I am just after some local knowledge. My question is, at what point should we postpone the trip across? Is 16kts across there nasty? Or is it similar to moreton bay? I am an experienced driver, I just don't want to ruin all my camping gear either as my boat gets quite wet and I here the Passage gets sloppy.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2

    Whitsundays Passage Advice

    There are a lot more pressure points and much larger current through the passage compared to
    Moreton bay. So can get a bit nasty.

    I recently went over in 25kn wind in my 2300 noosacat. Wasn't unsafe but it was rather hairy. I think a 5mcc would have copped plenty of waves over the front, be shitting your pants and you'd probably be divorced (quite unsafe in a 5.5cc I would say)

    If it does blow up a bit when your over there. Wait for the tide and wind to run same direction and it usually calms down a smidge for you to get back.

    You'd def have an ordinary trip in a 20knots wind.

    Sent from my iPhone using Ausfish forums

  3. #3

    Re: Whitsundays Passage Advice

    I went there many decades ago and off the top of my memory Solway Passage is a place to seriously consider not doing in a small boat, the yacht I was in was 60- 65ft and we nearly lost our towed tender due to the largish whirlpools that were there. First time I had seen whirlpools and I was glad I was in a large yacht at the time. You would need to check the tides and wind direction for that place. Other than that the rest of the places we went were quite good, went back a few years later on my honeymoon and hired a 23ft powerboat and it only got hairy on the last day as the seas kicked up to 2m but we had to get back as we were on a chartered boat, also the missus was feeling crook so that didn't help.

  4. #4

    Re: Whitsundays Passage Advice

    Excellent, thanks for the help guys!

  5. #5

    Re: Whitsundays Passage Advice

    So I'd be pushing s*@! Up hill in 16kts with 1m swell?

  6. #6

    Re: Whitsundays Passage Advice

    I suppose it depends where you want to go, about 10 years earlier before my honeymoon, I was living in that area and one weekend I went with 3 other guys from Cannonvale in a 14ft tinny and went over to Armit Island which is north west? from the main Whitsunday group, on the return journey the seas were much bigger than a 1m swell and wind kicked up quite a bit, but we just went up and down and made it safely back. Swell isn't too much of a problem but you have to look out for the breakers.

    So it depends on how comfortable you feel doing a trip like that. Would I do it again in those conditions in that sized boat... no way in hell!! , but the weather in that part of the world can be fickle, often the seas were frequently glassed out for weeks on end and you could have kayaked all the way but it could change quite quickly. Having said that, a 5.5m center console is a not a bad sized boat so depending on your boating skills it shouldn't be a problem providing you check the conditions before you go.

    From what I remember it is much, much better boating there than in Morton Bay.


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