Cruising News


Recent Cruising Division events:

‘Living Seawalls’ presentation 25 March
with SIMS
Watch webinar recording here
Click here for full report

Presentation 26 February 
‘Latest cruising sail technology’ with North Sails
Click here for full report

Excursion 7 December
‘A night on the Waratah’ Christmas drinks
Click here for full report

Presentation 27 November
‘The early French maritime explorers of Nouvelle Hollande’ with Andrew Phippen
Click here for full report

Cruising Excursion 24 November
Click here for full report

Presentation 23 October
‘The next generation of mast and sail systems’ with Bret Perry
Click here for full report

Cruising Excursion 27 October
Quarantine Beach
Report coming soon
Cruising Excursion 5 – 7 October
Port Hacking 
Click here for full report


Presentation 25 September 
‘The work of a Yacht Surveyor’ by Don Buckley aka ‘The Admiral’ 
Click here for full report

Presentation 22 August
‘The Life of Gordon Ingate aka ‘Wingnut’ ‘
Click here for full report
View the video of the evening here
 (password ‘Dragon’)

Presentation 24 July
‘The Halvorsen Story’ by Noel Phelan
Click here for full report

Presentation 26 June
‘The Origin and Evolution of the Australian 18 footer’ by Ian Smith
Click here for full report

Cruising Excursion 30 June
Quarantine Beach
Click here for full report

Presentation 22 May
‘Lord Howe Island’
Club Members Robert Dickson and Cmdr Jim Dunstan recalled their voyages in late 2018.
Click here for full report

50th Squadron Annual Cruise
Pittwater, 12-18 April

Captain John Taylor’s report
Galley Gourmet Challenge report
by Trish Stanley and Sue Swanson

Presentation 27 March
‘Thailand to the Maldives’
The ocean is full of surprises: Sail meets science crossing the Indian Ocean on a Swan 61, by Members Ruth McCance and Trent Goldsack
Talk slides available here
Presentation 27 February
‘The wreck of the Dunbar and a North Shore connection’ with Historian John Lanser 
Click here for full report

Presentation 23 January
‘Cruising in Europe’

Neil Driscoll from Above and Beyond Boating spoke about what’s required to obtain the ICC.
Click here for full report

Presentation 28 November
‘Melbourne to Osaka race’ a talk by Rupert Henry and Greg O’Shea. 
Read about the race in the Logbook
Presentation 24 October
‘Cruising Helmsman Future of Cruising Forum’ hosted by Phil Ross. 
Click here for full report

Presentation 26 September
‘Practical use of VHF and AIS radios’ a talk by Peter Lowndes. 
Click here for presentation

Presentation 22 August
‘The Incredible Life of Captain Bligh’ a talk by Dr Nigel Erskine, Curator of the Maritime Museum.
Click here for full report

Presentation 25 July
Young couple Hugh and Kate Macready who have written a book ‘Under the Arms of the Sky: A Sailing Adventure’ related the story of their two year voyage through Indonesia.
Click here for full report.

Presentation 27 June
David and Jill Henry recounted the highlights of Sweet Chariot’s circumnavigation of the world. 
Click here for full report

Presentation 23 May 
Sydney to Darwin and back on Wine-Dark Sea, with Sarah Goddard-Jones and Pete Lowndes.
Click here for full report

Annual Squadron Cruise 21-28 April 
More than 40 boats assembled for the 49th Annual Cruise to Broken Bay, Cowan Creek, Coal and Candle Creek and Pittwater.
View photos here

Member Forum 28 March
‘Anchorages & Destinations on Sydney Harbour’ hosted by Greer Leonard and Anthony Bell from The Count. 
Click here for full report

Bass & Flinders Presentation 28 February
Andrew Phippen, a volunteer with the Australian National Maritime Museum, gave a talk.  
Click here for full report

SY Ena & other Maritime Adventures Presentation 15 February
John Mullen described three exciting projects. 
Australia Day Raft-up 26-28 January 
We visited Hen & Chicken Bay. 
Click here for full report

Guest Speaker Dinner 24 January 
Sir James Hardy OBE reminisced about the Admiral’s Cup which celebrated its 50th anniversay in 2017.
Click here for full report

Christmas Drinks 11 December
We celebrated the end of the year with ‘An Evening on the James Craig’ – a unique opportunity to get together in a beautiful situation alongside the Heritage Fleet Wharf overlooking Barangaroo. 
Click here for full report

Presentation 22 November
‘Are animals the new Oceanographers?’ with Prof. Rob Harcourt and Kate Parsons of the Sydney Institute of Marine Science.
Click here for full report  Download SIMS flyer

Presentation 12 October
‘Sail the World – Everything you need to know to circumnavigate the Globe’ with Erick Reikert. 
Click here for full report

Long Weekend Raft Up 30 Sep – 2 Oct
Destination Pittwater 

Presentation 27 September
‘Wartime story of  Krait’
by Noel Phelan of the National Maritime Museum 
Click here for full report

Presentation 23 August
‘North Sydney Maritime and Local History’
With North Shore Council Librarian Dr Ian Hoskins
Click here for full report

Presentation 10 August
‘2018 Tahiti Yacht Rally’
with Trevor Joyce, Mariner Boating Holidays Further information here

Presentation 26 July
‘So you want to race around the World?’
Tales from the Clipper Challenge for Corinthian sailors with Michael Molesworth 

Presentation 28 June
‘Whales, their sounds and conservation’
With Doug Cato. 
Click here for full report

Wine-Dark Sea Voyage
Where are they now? Read their blog here

Presentation 24 May 
‘Coastal Navigation’
Barry Cuneo discussed cruising the Barrier Reef, covering route and weather planning.
Click here for full report

17-24 April
Squadron Annual Cruise
Over 40 boats enjoyed a magnificent week of racing, cruising, beach gatherings and social times, accompanied by sunshine and fair breezes.
Click here for photos

Presentation 22 March 2017
‘Weather Prediction’
With weather guru Roger ‘Clouds’ Badham.

Presentation 22 February 2017
‘Sailing to the Antarctic aboard the Bark Europa’
John Taylor and Rhod Cook recall their voyages exploring the Antarctic. 
Click here for full report

Wednesday 25 January 2017
‘Cruising Preparation from Ocean Racing’
Sean Langman’s renovation of Maluka of Kermandie to make her fit for the Sydney-Hobart. 
Click here for full report

26 – 29 January 2017
Australia Day raft-up at Hen and Chicken Bay
Click here for full report

Wednesday 14 December 2016 
Christmas Party

Drinks and dinner in the CCA. Lots of stories about past and future cruises and events. 

Wednesday 23 November 2016
Cruising Division talk ‘From Sydney to Suez’ 
Jill and David Henry recounted the first part of their decade-long circumnavigation of the world aboard Sweet Chariot.  
Click here for full report

Wednesday 26 October 2016
Cruising Division talk ‘Cruising Holidays’
Trevor and Maggie Joyce discussed chartering and cruising in rallies in many exotic locations. 
Click here for full report

Wednesday 28 September 2016
Cruising Division talk ‘Rescuing the James Craig’
Alan Edenborough gave a presentation on his experiences identifying, patching up, towing and restoring this iconic ship.
Click here for full report

Mariner Boating Holidays Sweden Rally
The Stockholm Archipelago comprises 25,000 islands in an area of only 65 nautical miles from north to south and 15 miles from east to west. Trevor Joyce has written a report for you to enjoy.
Click here for full report
Wednesday 24 August 2016
Piloting Big Boats presentation
Squadron Member John Biffen made the serious sacrifice of leaving Hamilton Island with its glorious 26C to fly back to a wet and cold Sydney to talk to us about his experiences as Chief Pilot for Sydney Harbour.

13-14 August 
Late Winter Raft Up
Excursion to Bantry Bay

Wednesday 27 July
Cruising Division talk ‘Marine Rescue Sydney’
Deputy Unit Commander NSW Marine Rescue, Matthew King explained that there are 45 coastal units which take over 364,000 radio contacts a year!
Wednesday 22 June
Cruising Division talk ‘North West Passage Transit’
We were treated to a fascinating talk by Paul Kerrigan. Organised by the Cruising committee, and attended by a full house of over 100 members and guests, Paul related his experience of a North West Passage transit on the yacht Drina. Drina is owned and skippered by member Michael Thurston, who has over 40 years of extensive cruising experience.
11-13 June
Long Weekend Raft Up
Seven Member boats participated in the June long weekend cruise to Echo Point. A spanking westerly took them to the Spit, the sun shone and a wonderful time was enjoyed by all. You can read Sarah Goddard-Jones’ report 
Wednesday 25 May
Cruising Division talk ‘Sea Safety’
Neil Driscoll from Above and Beyond Boating gave an enlightening and informative talk. He discussed the different types of Life Jackets and their fitness for purpose plus new and helpful tips on current safety equipment now available. With the help of ‘Bob’ his fully kitted dummy and various pieces of equipment he explained the problems of recovery at sea and why we should be prepared for all types of emergency.

Wednesday 27 April
Cruising Division talk ‘Tales from the Sydney Hobart’
Renowned navigator Lindsay May recounted his experiences competing in over 40 Sydney to Hobart yacht races.

16-23 April Annual Cruise
Over 40 boats enjoyed a magnificent week of racing, cruising, beach gatherings and social times, accompanied by sunshine and fair breezes.
Read the Cruise Captain’s report
The Galley Gourmet Challenge 
Cruising in Company report



24-28 March Easter Cruising in Company.
Participants were Wine-Dark Sea, Limelight and Anitra V with Vibe joining on Sunday. We departed Sydney on Good Friday, arrived at Broken Bay throughout the day and rafted up for evening drinks. The Saturday waterfall drinks at Castle Lagoon featured the new WDS inflatable lounge! On Sunday we motored round to Mushroom Bay, dropped anchor and headed into Akuna Bay Marina for lunch at the new Pilu. We enjoyed a gentle sail back to Sydney on Monday, with fine, warm weather.
Click here to see photos on Facebook.

23 March Cruising Division Presentation – Voyage around Cape Horn
David and Sarah Salt regaled us with fabulous photos, fascinating charts and thrilling narration of their adventures in the Atacama Dessert, crossing the Andes, to Argentinian frontier towns on the edge of the southern ocean. Amazing bird life and wildlife, cascading glaciers, the majesty of Cape Horn itself.

24 February Cruising Division Forum – Rafting Up & Anchoring
James Merrington and David Salt discussed the finer techniques of rafting up and anchoring etiquette, shared videos and stories of anchoring antics. Their recommendations on chain size, length and weight, anchor types and weight, how to anchor for swing, fore and aft and how to raft up, all triggered good discussion around the room. 

27 January Cruising Division Presentation – Lord Howe island
Nigel Stoke spoke to a large crowd (80 people!) of RSYS cruising enthusiasts about sailing his beautiful yacht Fidelis to Lord Howe Island.
He was well qualified, having sailed the route for more than 13 years. He spoke wonderfully, supported by charts, videos, photos and stories. We all got a real feel for what it was like to sail to LHI and go to the famous Ned’s Beach Barbecue. There was very funny film of Nigel’s happy working crews and of their daily activities for the three to four days of the trip. There were dolphins playing around the bow and film of all forms of weather from sparkling days to heavy conditions. He told us about planning, safety, navigation, the sailing itself and the arrival at the lagoon at LHI. He made the roughly 400 nautical trip sound like something we could all do on a well-planned, well prepared Cat 1 boat.
At the back of the room he had generously laid out for viewing an array of his on-board documents, including pre-trip preparation lists, safety and communication procedures, charts of the layout of the boat, a map of through hull fittings and valves and numerous other useful documents. On the walls were the famous LHI Barbecue posters that are forming part of Sydney sailing history.
It was an amusing, informative and very well attended night. Impossible to hear it and not think about doing it! 

23-24 January Raft up at Old Animal Quarantine Station, Abbotsford
Four boats participated: Rapunzel, Matang, Saliere and Magnificat, and with eight people, we had an enjoyable 24 hours. 
This anchorage was a real surprise, as we thought we knew Sydney Harbour reasonably well. The anchorage was in relatively shallow water which was beautifully protected from the prevailing Sou’easter and Nor’easters which prevailed throughout the weekend. 
We went ashore at the old quarantine station site and enjoyed a barbecue at the excellent public facilities which included electric BBQs and a large pavilion area with good tables and seating. It also had the attraction, for those of who stayed on, of a very pleasant walking area around the waterfront and through the streets of Abottsford.

December 2015 Newsletter
As the Cruising Division celebrates 12 months of the Cruising Experience, we publish here a selection of articles, written by Members, describing a number of activities which have taken place around the Division. We hope you find these informative and inspiring! 
Click here to read

5-6 December 2015 Raft up at Collins Beach
Our pre-Christmas weekend raft up was very well attended by eight boats: Saliere, David and Sarah Salt; Rapunzel, Richard and Sandy Lawson; Matang, Rob and Fran Hardy; Wine Dark Sea, Pete Lowndes and Sarah Goddard Jones; Hot Chilli, Alan and Linda Cox; Brian and Muffy McKean with their new (for them) Beneteau 36.7. We also warmly welcomed newcomers Avanti, Chris and Maggie Bolton and Felixette, Michael and Jane Leslie. 
The Saturday afternoon get together was the highlight of the weekend, with Sandy’s icebreaker over drinks which included the question ‘where did you originate and how did you meet you partner?’ a terrific success in bringing everyone together very quickly in a very funny and enjoyable exchange.
The planned Sunday lunch had to be abandoned as the Q Station restaurant had no available seating for us. The chosen alternative was to meet on Store Beach at 11am to enjoy a picnic together … and as often is the case, plan B was a great alternative. Another highly successful raft up.
October 23 Catering and Provisioning
Paul and Clair Ley of Pilgrim Yachting gave an excellent presentation on ‘Catering and Provisioning’. Topics covered included: food selection, quantity estimation, smart stowage and some valuable tips on extending the life of fresh food. The subject proved very popular with the near-capacity audience asking many questions before adjourning to dinner. 
September 23 The History of the Australian Flag
A well-attended meeting enjoyed a presentation entitled The History of the Australian Flag by John Vaughan of Australiana Flags, learning about the origins of the Australian Flag and associated flag flying protocol. John’s fascinating talk included a display of his valuable historic collection dating back to the early 1900’s. Of interest to Members was the popularity of his custom designed “wine pennant” hoisted on vessels to invite fellow sailors aboard for drinks – essential for all cruising yachts.     
August 26 Rigging Maintenance
Jason Neuhaus of Diverse Rigging and Yachting gave a talk in the Clubhouse explaining the important elements of rigging maintenance. With the aid of his own photos and samples of rigging hardware, Jason explained what can happen if your rigging is not properly maintained and offered a wealth of handy hints and tips that could potentially save the expense and embarrassment of a rig failure.  

11-18 April Annual Cruise
Click here to read Richard Lawson’s report.