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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Meandering around Moreton Bay; our cruising continued :-)

After we left the Brisbane River we entered Moreton Bay; a huge bay named by Captain James Cook on his 1770 voyage up the east coast of our continent. This bay is quite sheltered due to 3 large islands that are parallel to the coastline, Bribie, Moreton and Stradbroke. Then there are another 297 islands that dot this region. Some are inhabited but many are not and our cruise would now take us past, between and around many of these islands.

The Tangalooma Flyer which goes between Brisbane and the resort on Moreton Island 

On the mainland side (starboard)  we cruised past Wynnum and Manly, Wellington Point, Victoria Point, Cleveland and Redland Bay communities.

One of the first islands that we encountered in Moreton Bay was the infamous St Helena Island on which was built a penal colony for the 'worst of convicts' who endured a pretty horrific life. Escapes were thwarted by the sharks that were very plentiful in the bay. It is now a National Park and does a 'roaring trade' with school groups' excursions. There are also night time tours which are said to be quite scary, lol! To land on St Helena, you have to be part of an organised tour and they are very strict about this. (the company whose cruise we were taking are a group that take tours there) Now it so happens that on board with us that day, was a ranger and he took over the commentary as we went past St Helena island.

The ranger tells us about the harsh conditions that prisoners on St Helena lived under

He demonstrates a beating with a cat o' ninetails  on the  volunteer crewman. (it was made of rope not leather and he didn't really hit him :-) )
Our boat cruise went between St Helena and Mud Island and to the left (port) we could see the huge white sand dunes of Moreton Island where the Tangalooma resort is and gradually we drew near North Stradbroke Island. North and South Stradbroke Island together stretched all the way to Southport so it was on our port side the rest of the trip.

As we came towards Cleveland we passed a small island known as Peel Island. This was originally the site of  a quarantine station but from 1907-1959 it was a leprosarium, for the isolation and treatment of people who had contracted leprosy.

As we neared the Redland Bay area, suddenly there seemed to be islands everywhere; Macleay, Russell, Lamb and Coochiemudlo Islands are just some of the inhabited islands in this area. The channel is very narrow here and is marked with the usual red and green markers. (green marks the right side of the channel and red, the left side leaving the harbour/dock etc))

Macleay Island

Wynumn/Manly in the distance

Russell Island's electricity comes via pylons from the mainland...

Seabirds having a rest...

Many islands are mainly under water and have mangroves...

A trawler we 'met' not far from Stradbroke island...

A lovely 'wilderness' near the mouth of the Logan River

The southern end of North Stradbroke Island and the northern tip of South Stradbroke Island...

A close-up of Jumpin Pin between the 2 parts of Stradbroke Island (originally this was one island)
 Here is a map showing the island of Moreton Bay down to the southern tip of South Stradbroke...

In the next post I'll share some photos taken as we sailed towards the Gold Coast :-)


Anonymous said...

great pics maria.xx

Nurdan Kanber said...

Dear Maria,

Normally I am not such type of person, but, seriously I am getting envious with your wonderful cruise :))

To sail and being on board is the most desirable life style for me. With my twin, since a while, we are planning to buy a boat-house to live on water.

So thank you for sharing these marvelous pictures with us.

Happy sailing and weekend,

Dorothy said...

Love the Gold Coast ... will look forward to tomorrow's post. xoxox

Velvet Moss said...

Sounds like a really interesting trip. Great photos!