|Southern Belle in Sykes Cove, Barnes Bay with the ever present Mt Wellington in the background ... a crystal clear afternoon in southern Tasmania.|
The D'Entrecasteaux Channel .. or simply the Channel .. is a wide body of water separating the Tasmanian mainland from Bruny Island. It was discovered in April 1792 by the French explorer Bruni D'Entrecasteaux who, according to Wikipedia, was ill at the time and the seas were rough. His navigator made a calculation error and brought the ships up the then unknown channel into calm waters and discovered this very special place. The Channel, the coast of Tasmania along here and Bruny Island offer all kinds of enjoyment for anyone and everyone. There are picturesque little towns, boutique winerys, art, sailing, sheltered coves and historic sites. You don't need a boat to explore but it does add to the experience!
|No matter which direction or where you view the Channel the outlook is big, wide and often empty of people or other boats.|
|The boundless sky adds another element of wonder .. huge and ever changing.|
|Lovely, calm Sykes Cove. When we arrived there was only 1 other boat, SV Stray Cats. By the time we left, became good friends with Debbie and Steve.|
|Once in the House of Whiskey there are a multitude of choices!|
The next day the westerly wind was still blowing so we moved over to the mainland side of the Channel to a place called Peppermint Bay. We jumped at the invitation to join Sans Souci and Supa Trooper - also members of the PISST! group - there for very enjoyable sundowners that evening. One of the lovely little towns found along this waterway is Woodbridge and it is just up the road from the Peppermint Bay jetty. Turns out there is a perfect and very popular general store serving good coffee and breakfast there so we all went up the next morning and after a very nice meal walked around the area.
|Woodbridge main street.|
|Loved this! A free community library. The rules are, "if you like a book please take it and bring one back if you can".|
|Fresh flathead for dinner! Thank you Steve!|
|Port Cygnet with rolling hills and some fine houses behind. The Cygnet Sailing Club house sits right on the water's edge just behind the blue hull boat in the photo.|
|Looking across the boat down the waterway leading up to the Port.|
The next day, Tuesday, was race day at the Cygnet Sailing Club. Every Tuesday they have an afternoon race followed by a 'come one come all' $15 a head BBQ. We watched the race get underway from our cockpit and then long before it was over took the dingy over for the BBQ. We met up with Jim and Ann, very accommplished live aboard cruisers off their boat Insatiable II, and they introduced us to some of the locals. I sort of felt sorry for the people in the race because the dinner kicked off long before the race was over and when they finally arrived there wasn't much food left. We also met a couple who were passing through on their way around the world from The Netherlands. She is a member of WWSA (Women Who Sail Australia) too. Really good people and very interesting to hear their exploits. She is way way braver than I'll ever be.
|Me with Janneke off the yacht Anna Caroline, great to meet and talk to her and her partner.|
|Main street in Cygnet|
|Some of the boats in the Cygnet race .. there were all kinds and sizes participating.|
|Port of Cygnet on a calm clear morning.|