Ive always wanted to do this trip. Last year i would stare over google earth and look at all of the knook and crannies of beaches along the big wilderness that exists between Mallacoota and Eden. On the 13th of January, i arrived at boatramp lakeside at Mallacoota and launched the yak. I was not too happy leaving the car and trailer behind parked on the street next to the caravan park but i was pretty keen to get underway. I could have launched from the ocean boatramp which would have been a lot easier, but the car and trailer left there overnight for a week at the ramp might raise the alarm and/or would expose the car to break ins as its in an isolated spot. The mouth of the inlet was closed so i had to get the gear out of the yak and wheel the A.I to the ocean side. Id left around 2pm through only a 3 ft but nasty shorebreak and then had a top run down to Gabo Island and beyond. It was a 15 knot SW which was predicted to hang around for 2 days. What freaked me out was that even though there were thousands of stinkies(motorboats) at the Caravan Park and around town, 2 km out from Mallacoota there was not one boat to be seen. For the next 55km i did that afternoon, the boats were 'Missing in Action'.
The coast was stunning. There were flying fish jumping out 100m from shore and flying away from the yak near Cape Howe. Id seen flying fish in the tropics but not this far south. Wierd. It was getting dark and i was pretty keen to get to a beach with a gradual gradient and plenty of escape routes if the swell picked up overnight. I ended up almost at Woonbyn River but at Merrica River was closer. Big oysters on scattered big boulders in the shallow river with silver bream( i think) darting around as the AI made it up the river to a camp site in the jungle.
Next morning a huge monitor stumbled over the camp site and took off, I gave chase, and through the foliage i lost track of it except it gave out a deep visceral hiss. It was pissed off.
Here is a pic of the river and the AI leaving the river.
Across disaster bay, the wind turned nasty, a North easterly of up to 30knots making forward progress pretty difficult. I was tacking into the wind, criss-crossing the bay just to get as far north as possible to get into the lee of Green Cape. I ended up only travelling 10km that day and found a nice spot where there was safe fishing and surfing to be done for 2 days.
There was some pretty impressive lightning on Saturday night but when i woke the wind was back to a SW and i was up and out of Disaster Bay. I was staggered by the scale of Green Cape. When I rounded the Cape the wind was directly behind the boat, and the ugly chop was cut out by Green Cape and the A.I really took off. I could see Eden in the distance. Oh my god, some stinkies 2 km from Eden Enterance!
In these conditions it could have been possible to travel 200km that day, but my wetsuit zip broke on that beach that morning and i was getting cold so Merimbula was my exit from the watery freeway 10km out. I rolled up to the caravan park near the boat ramp, got a site, then caught a bus the next morning to get my car back!