Our four days in Mackay seemed to pass quickly. We discovered we were in huge sugar cane growing area with ships coming into the port to load up with sugar or molasses. Also a little south of Mackay is an enormous coal loading facility where the ships are loaded out at sea by a conveyor belt system, hence all the ships anchored offshore waiting their turn to load – more than 30 of them.
Next morning we set sail for Airlie Beach sailing into Shute Bay on the way for a look. By 2.00pm we were on a mooring buoy just outside the Able Point Marina at Airlie Beach, kindly given to us by friends we have made from the Boat Shows we have done both in NZ and here in Oz. They own a Charter company here. We took the STB trampoline, which we blew in heavy seas just before we came in through the Barrier Reef, and the sail bag ashore to be repaired, hopefully we should have them back before the end of the week. Our other jobs will have to wait till we arrive in Townsville.
Yesterday we had the first bit of rain since arriving in Oz. It is much cooler here so we are looking forward to heading North after a visit to more of the Whitsunday Islands. It really is a cruisers paradise here with so many beautiful Islands and bays to visit. We will be heading out to the famous Whitehaven beach on Whitsunday Island next.
OK this is just a short note which I am sure you will be pleased about, so will sign out for the time being.