Since the best time to transit Port Philip Heads is the first hour of the flood we decided to do another overnighter so that we could arrive there at 8.45am which is slack low water. The other major influence for this strategy and not leaving at 3am for the afternoon high tide slack water at the heads was the surge in Apollo Bay. Baly was jerking and snatching at her mooring lines and we would have gotten little sleep.
So we went to the Great Ocean Road Brewhouse in the late afternoon and sampled all nine of the craft beers they had on tap and had fish and chips for dinner. Back to Baly for a couple of hours sleep then we departed Apollo Bay at 9pm.
We had a large 240m, 60,000 ton tanker, the New Alliance, pass with a mile and a half of us at about 11pm, headed for Geelong. This where the AIS is so valuable, particularly the closest point of approach function, so you can see the ship is in fact going to miss you.
Arrived at Port Philip Heads at 8.45am at slack water and just in time for the flood to begin. Lonsdale light is visible on the left or West headland. We used the Australian National Tide Tables and Navionics tide but the locals use their own version of the truth and we now know why. We pushed 4 kts of current all the way in and were pushed sideways by overfalls, eddies and potboils as you can see in our track below.
This evening we get to spend the night in the most expensive marina in Australia, Queenscliff Harbour at $97 a night. Not sure what we get for that but I’m hoping a drinks trolley with sundowners, laundry pickup and return in the morning and bed covers turned down with chocolates on the pillow. They did however give us free towels and the laundry is also free.
Yo Baan,The track in through the heads was interesting. Hence the reason I sent you the info on the tides. Slack water at the Heads, is 3 hrs later or the same as the high or low tides at Williamstown. Its pretty tricky but apparently the water takes another 3 hrs to filter into the bay and Willy is used at the yard stick for slack water. Anyway I’m pleased you got in without any mishaps.
We would appreciate the sheets being washed and turned down with chocolates for our arrival. Nice touch.
Or use this to get correct slack water. http://www.bom.gov.au/australia/tides/#!/vic-the-rip