Bareboating anyone??

Jan 30th, 2004, 02:21 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 12
Bareboating anyone??

Has anyone done this or know about it. Sounds great to me. Let me know any suggestions for GBR bareboating or boat rentals. Thanks
mmalone is offline  
Jan 30th, 2004, 08:05 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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We've bareboat-chartered two different boats in the Whitsunday Islands, and had a great time. I think it needs to be made clear that although you will hear this referred to as a GBR charter, it is quite a distance further from the outermost Whitsunday Island to the Reef itself. I am not aware of a charter company that will permit you to sail/motor their yacht out to the GBR proper. It is a long way, and requires good navigation and nautical skills, as there are, well, a lot of reefs. We went diving on the GBR, but we took a high-speed commercial catamaran, which can do 20+ knots.

We chartered a Catalina 32 sloop from Whitsunday Experience ( We were very happy with this boat and the experience and would highly recommend this company. We also chartered a Grand Banks-style 34-foot trawler from Whitsunday Escape ( After doing quite a bit of shopping, we found this company's to be substantially cheaper than the rest. It is a smaller-time operation, and the boats are not as new. We had some problems - couldn't get the engine started and had to wait a day to get it fixed. On the bright side, we were 'stuck' on Hamilton Island, which is a great place to play for a day.
ALF is offline  
Feb 9th, 2004, 04:48 AM
Join Date: Jun 2003
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We chartered a boat from Sunsail (I think)in the WhitSundays. Just the two of us on a 34 Catalina - no problems at all. We had them supply the food...which was MORE than enough, even with the increased appetites that we had from working all day.

I had sailed before but never on the ocean (only protected bays and harbors) and we had no problems. However, the Aussies are a sturdy lot and they expect you to know what you are doing. I mean, that you need to keep your wits about you (as any good sailor knows whenever dealing with the sea). An example of what I mean: Every day we were supposed to call ahead to just check in, which we did. One day we decided to go around Cook island on the west side. Their reply "no worries. It'll be a bit rough out there. have a great day." We didn't think anything of it until we encountered 3 meter rollers and a 4 knot current. Nothing that we couldn't handle but it crystalized in our minds how comfortable the Aussies are on the water and how laid back they are about things that in the US there might be more caution. We thought it was wonderful that way...but just so you know.

One final word, we scuba'd off our boat, not on the GBR but in bays/harbors. We had done a number of assisted dives but this was our first unassisted and it was great! We could have had a high-speed cat come pick us up for the GBR experience (and we will do that next time) but we were perfectly happy to do it on our own then and the view was more amazing that we thought it would be (eventhough we weren't actually on the GBR).
HunyBadger is offline  
Feb 9th, 2004, 05:52 AM
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 332
Sorry, I stand corrected...we used The Moorings, not SunSail but they are another outfit that operates out of Hamilton Isle. And it was not a Catalina but a Beneteau. My apologies for the error.
HunyBadger is offline  
Feb 15th, 2004, 07:55 PM
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 38
Just an FYI for anyone else re: the WhitSundays. We too chartered with the Moorings. When we were there the Moorings Manager was an Attorney..forgot his name but he was not someone I would cross. Moorings required we check in every am with that days planned itineray and at pm when in anchorage. Mooorings reserved the right to veto anyplan too risky from their perspective. No night time sailing allowed and no GBR sailing. If you look on a chart the GBR is a considerable distance. Our knotmeter wasn;'t working and I think we had a gas gaage problem. Sailing is not for the beginer...tidal diferentials and passages between some islands required very good seamanship. Encounters with coral is frequent..Anchorages were in pretty deep water as I recall. We went in October which was Spring and had a few rough weather days but sailing simniiar to Pacific NW. Best thing we ever did in all of our sailing expereinces (we've chartered upwards of 20 some trips all over the world) was to call a Float Plane outfit from the boat on the VHF and have the float plane pick us up in one of the bays. We hung a red shirt out on the halyard and they cicled and set down..picked us up (you walk on the float plane nose and climb in without falling in the water--the whole float plane actually floats-- that is sits in the water)and flew us out over the GBR to a private island where we snorkled at low tide (no big man eatting fish in the reef)and had mimosas. Pilot couldn't have been more than 20 years old but flew us back out over the GBR with epertise. Best adventure I have ever be so close to the GBR and not go is a shame. One of teh 5 best highlights of my life travel.
JAAR is offline  
Feb 19th, 2004, 06:48 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,283
I've also done a trip with Whitsundays Experience like ALF, and thought it was great. My husband's the sailor, having his own trimaran for years, sailing the San Francisco was a great experience! I even have a picture of myself at the tiller on my website (it actually looks like I know what I'm doing)!


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