|my B&W morning - leaving Gove at daybreak|
11’32.775S – 136’21.798E
0630hs: AR was seen sailing out of Gove Harbour.MrJ and I had been out less than two hours when we hooked a great Spanish mackerel on our trolling line; enough for four big feeds. Yummo!
1000hs: We were rounding Cape Wilberforce to go through the channel between the Cape and South Bromby Islet. At Cape Wilberforce the tide floods west (at the Hole it floods east).
11.15hs: Next was the channel between Cotton and Wigrim Islands (the English Company Islands). Here we saw two motor boats steaming their way through against the tide. The tide was flooding for us and we had a fast ride through.
Then came the notorious Gugari Rip or as we all know it as the Hole in the Wall; the narrow channel that separates Gulguwuru and Raragala Islands in the Wessel Island Group. This channel is no more than1.30n/m long, the width at the eastern entrance is 0.11n/m across, the width the western entrance is 0.32n/m narrowing down to 0.10n/m across at the widest section and 0.06n/m at the narrowest section. Passage through the Rip reduces our passage to Darwin by 35n/m.
As stated but the Gove Boating Club web site: The best time to enter is during the first hour of the ebb tide; the tide floods east through the Hole. The last hour could be ok but if you were to arrive late you would be confronted with the flood tide and a rough entrance if a fresh south easterly is blowing. The passage can be made at any stage of the ebb but if you choose to pass through at full ebb on a spring tide you would certainly not have time to relax and enjoy the scenery and you would probably require a change of underpants when you were spat out of the western exit. (When the tide is running, water surges through the rip at up to 13 knots) The entrance can be very difficult to see if you have been set slightly north the best approach is to lay a course a mile or so south of the entrance and steer this until it is sighted. Tide times are approximately 1 hour before Gove. (I have seen some people’s blogs that state that the tide is 1 hour after Gove eg: http://mnestis.wordpress.com/tag/gugari-rip/ )
|Ocean Pearl heading into the Rip|
|AR before the entrance|
|here we go|
After speaking to them on the radio they began their approach; it look as though the boat was stopping and starting and then the radio squawks, “Ocean Pearl calling Alana Rose”. I answer. The voice on the other end speaks again, “We are pushing against the tide, I would turn around and wait a while”. That all we need to hear; MrJ turns AR around and we hang off for only a short spell while we watch the other boat disappear into the Hole in the Wall. We also watch the water at the entrance which seems to be settling somewhat. MrJ and I decide to have a go!
|the low cliff face|
|the waterflow settles|
|old grafiti on the rocks - HMAS Woollongong 1988 & HMAS Ardent 1978|
|this could be the place to take refuge|
|the skipper at the helm|
|sunset in Guruliya Bay|