December 16

We left Fitzroy Reef this morning. Our time here was interesting but strong winds made it difficult to do much in the way of diving or snorkeling. We did have 2 calm days and managed to snorkel a few times, and we did one scuba dive which was nice.

This morning winds are North at about 15k and we are headed for Lady Musgrave Island, a coral atoll with a single coral cay on its Eastern end. It is only 24 miles to the SE of here and we expect to take about 4 ½ hours to reach it. Skies are mostly clear with about 20% cloud cover.

At 9am we are heading SE on a course 132M. We are almost dead downwind with the sails wing and wing. The sea is a bit rough however and we are rolling and slamming a bit as the main and jib alternately fill and flog.

At about Noon we entered the lagoon at Lady Musgrave. The winds have increased to 20-22k and the seas were much rougher in the last hour. The lagoon is peacefully calm and there are 2 other sailboats here. There are also 2 huge tourist boats here. One, the “Lady Musgrave” out of Bundaberg and the other “Spirit of 1770” out of the town of 1770 (yes, there is a town called “1770” named for the year Capt. James Cook landed there on his second voyage of discovery). There is also an assortment of small glass-bottom boats and shore tenders moored near the shore for use by the tour boats. The “Lady Musgrave” actually ties up to a floating dock moored just off the island. This ‘platform’ has a roof for shade, lockers for storing snorkeling gear and other amenities for the tourists.

We plan to stay here 3 or 4 days and then head for Bundaberg. Hopefully the wind will calm down and allow us to do some snorkeling and sight-seeing. The island is know for the turtles who breed and lay their eggs on the island and we have been told you can go ashore at night and watch them lay.