Hervey Bay to Rooney Point - Thursday 29 April 2021
We chose to spend the night at Rooney Point, at the northern tip of Fraser Island, for two reasons:
- It would be quite a rolly anchorage for us, to test if our flopper stoppers would keep us stable
- It was a fairly straight route across the bay to Bundaberg.
We left Hervey Bay around 8:30am for an estimated 4-5 hour cruise to Rooney Point, and arrived around 1pm.
As is always the case, we set the anchor and monitored it for a while, to ensure we weren’t dragging it. We do this by setting an anchor drag alarm and also marking waypoints to identify the perimiter of how we were swinging around the anchor point.
I also want to note, we were rolling back and forth quite a lot. After ensuring we weren’t dragging, we then deployed the flopper stoppers. Even when we put the first one out, we noticed a difference, so with both in the water, while it wasn’t completely calm, they made a significant reduction in the roll.
A funny thing happened at Rooney Point!
Some time during the afternoon, I heard Robert exclaim “oh bugger!” Asking him what happened, he said one of the fenders had come loose and was floating away with the tide. MY NEWLY COVERED FENDER…
I quickly sprang into action! We got the kayak down, I threw on my life jacket, jumped on, and went paddling to retrieve it. At that stage, I’d given no thought to potential sharks or even how far the fender was going to float away. I was just intent on getting it after all the effort I’d made to cover the fenders when we were staying in Hervey Bay! Fortunately, I managed to catch up and bring it onto the kayak. Later when I asked Robert what he was thinking to do, he was going to let it go!
Here are some photos/videos of our route from Hervey Bay to Rooney Point.
En route to Rooney Point
Flopper stoppers work
Successful fender retrieval!
Rooney Point to Bundaberg - Friday 30 April 2021
I was up early on 30 April to capture the sunrise, and to check that everything was still in place regarding our flopper stoppers and anchor. And I’m pleased to say it was! We packed up and left Rooney Point early prepared for our 5-6 hour cruise, and looking forward to reaching Bundaberg. Well actually we were looking forward to reaching the marina, which is closer to Burnett Heads rather than the Bundaberg township.
During our transit to Bundaberg, we realised it was the first time ever that we couldn’t see land! And this lasted at least for an hour.
Oil pressure issues?
The trip across the bay was certainly a bit rolly (check out the video) and at one point, the port engine oil gauge reading went “off the chart”. But we didn’t panic…something like this happening was an indicator of an issue with the sensor/cable rather than the actual oil pressure. Robert went to investigate and discovered the cable was damaged, probably as a result of us being in rougher-than-usual seas.
We secured ourselves at the Bundaberg Port Marina around 2pm, had a late lunch and settled in for a while.
While it’s a little out of town, there’s a restaurant and cafe onsite.
The marina also offers a courtesy bus into Bundaberg, Monday to Friday (excl. public holidays) and on Sundays to the Shalom Markets. There’s also a public bus service that operates Monday to Saturday.
The local IGA (at Burnett Heads) also offers a courtesy bus service if you spend more than $30 (easily achieved).
Budaberg Marina and stroll to Burnett Heads (and the pub)
Later on during the afternoon we arrived, we decided to take a walk down to Burnett Heads and explore the local area. There’s a new marina slated for development, but it’s got a long way to go and later when chatting with some locals, apparently it’s been like this for about 3 years!
Where to next?
From here, we plan to head to Gladstone via 1770 and Pancake Creek.