Scouting road trip to the Coromandel


This is a colour photo but the weather was so bad and the sea so murky it came out gray. The sand on the beach is the only glimpse of colour. Taken just south of Coromandel township

The weather is not for boating just now. Gale force winds.
The New Zealand Met Service website has the entire local area at “RED 1”.
“A red rating suggests poor and possibly dangerous conditions such as strong winds and a big swell height 2-3 metres plus”

Danger Wil Robinson.

Issued by MetService at: 4:19pm Sunday 9 Sep 2012
Valid to: Midnight Monday 10 Sep 2012

Forecast:
*** GALE WARNING IN FORCE ***
Northwest 25 knots, rising to westerly 40 knots this evening, then easing to 30 knots in the morning. Sea becoming very rough for a time. Northerly swell 1 metre. Poor visibility in showers, possibly heavy and thundery this evening.

Outlook:
Outlook following 3 days: Changing early Wednesday southerly 20 knots, then easing overnight Wednesday variable 10 knots. Rough sea easing Wednesday.

Patience, patience and more patience and then some preparation, preparation, preparation.
I want to be out in the boat but it ain’t going to happen.
I need to use my time wisely.
I need to read the Day Skipper’s course material and the VHF Marine Radio Operator’s manual.
There is more to learn than rope.

SOLUTION:
Road trip!!!  Scouting Trip to the Coromandel
A scouting trip to see the area we want to go boating in from the view of the land. Any excuse really. Plus we wanted to check out the marina and the bays, those that had road access. The weather naturally isn’t the best, but that doesn’t matter. We had our International RadioTelephony Spelling Alphabet or ICAO* alphabet spelt out in the car on the way. Nothing like a road trip to shout out words that don’t seem to make sense. I really don’t like UNIFORM for the letter U. Why didn’t they come up with something like UKELELE. The alphabet has been around since the 1950s so I suppose they have thought about it long and hard and came up with what they did. My vote would still be for UKELELE. The military used to use the word UNCLE pre1956. That would have been alright too.
I used the VHF Handheld Radio to listen to the weather forecast and it hasn’t improved.
We got to see where the boats sheltered away from the bad weather. We got to see the colour of the Firth of Thames on a foul day and now we know why there is a wine called Muddy Waters. Nothing to do with the blues. We weren’t there for low tide to try out the natural hot pools at Hot Water Beach near Whitianga but we’ll save that for our return visit.

*ICAO, International Civil Aviation Organisation

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