Bribie to Moreton Island Paddle 04 -05 March 2017:
Well it was good to get this trip off the ground after postponements for weather, big seas and schedules. As it turned out the weather was perfect for a leisurely paddle across the bay to Tangalooma but we did have a few doubts during the week leading into the trip with the forecast changing daily.
This was our second paddle across with a group and what a fantastic trip it turned out to be.
For this trip we were very fortunate to have David and Christine Reed along with the boat as our safety craft. It is certainly not essential to have a boat along but it does add that extra level of safety and puts your mind at rest knowing it is there. David and Christine thanks so much for giving up your weekend to support us. It would also be remiss of me not to mention the Bribie VMR. They were really great and very professional, they do a fantastic job looking after the safety of everyone using this wonderful area.
All up we had 11 paddlers in four doubles and three singles. Thanks to Kerry from Natureline kayaks for the boats, everyone really enjoyed paddling your craft.
Our launch point was Bongaree on Bribie Island. Saturday morning at 5:00 we met at the boat ramp and after unloading the kayaks having a coffee and launching the safety boat we were ready for a paddle briefing and to prepare the kayaks by 5:30. We were in the water and underway by 06:00.
The trip over was really calm, seas were silky smooth and winds were light. There was not much other traffic on the bay and we pretty much had the place to ourselves.
Our path had us paddling around the bottom of Bribie Island and then pretty much directly east to the M3 Beacon where the three shipping channel converge. This ensured we only had one place to worry about ships. After crossing the channel we turned for Curtin Artificial Reef and paddled with an incoming tide down the Moreton Island Coast to Tangalooma. Differently to the last trip, this time we had a route plotted on the GPS which I had on the deck of the kayak. This was great and aside from an easy to follow route, gave me some great insights into paddling for currents and tidal flows. Disappointingly there was not much wildlife about and aside form a couple of far off dolphin sightings there was not much to report. All up the trip over took us around five hours.
Lesson number four from our last trip was: Never underestimate the power of a cold beer on a beautiful beach with a great group of people to help you forget the pain and enjoy the feeling of accomplishment. And this time it was no different. After 26km of paddling it is still a great feeling to hop into the water and enjoy a cold beer.
Stevie did a fantastic job with the catering and after a lunch we had a really pleasant afternoon on the beach, chilling, riding the “biscuit” behind the boat, snorkelling and for some an afternoon snooze.
As it turned out there was more wildlife on the land and we shared our camp with this fellow.
Saturday evening forecast turned out to be accurate and by 8pm we had rain coming down, but most of us were oblivious, snoring away in our tents. We woke for coffee and breakfast at 5:30 and after packing up camp were ready to roll by 07:00.
Once again the forecast did not disappoint and by launch time the sky had cleared and there was zero wind. Seas were smooth and it was looking like a great day for a paddle. Tides were also in our favour as we rode the low up the coast, essentially reversing our trip from the day before. As the tide turned we altered course for Bribie and had a great paddle back being pushed nicely along. The sea became a little lumpy as the day progressed but nothing to write home about; just not as smooth as Saturday.
The trip back proved to be a lot nicer for our newer paddlers as they settled into a rhythm and made small changes to their boats, all things you can only learn by spending time in the boat.
All up a really enjoyable little adventure. Great fun, a decent enough challenge and time enjoying our fantastic coastline. What more could you want?
Thanks to all who came along, looking forward to the next paddle!