Home' Afloat : AFLOAT May 2018 Contents Take monthly with water May 2018 47
ON THE WATER
with David Lockwood
You can contact the author at David.
email@example.com and on Twitter at
When you hit the Pacific Highway and
head north from Sydney things move
slowly. The suburbs make way for State
forest and National Parks, you catch a
shimmering glimpse of great lakes here
and there, till the flat flood plains of the
North Coast and the big rivers, then cool
Byron, before the border at The Tweed
backed by Mount Warning.
Come by water and this is the backdrop
for the transition from temperate Sydney
to sub-tropical SE Queensland. The ocean
changes colour en route as if to flag as
much, often from soupy-green inshore
hues to deep clear azure. And the current
pours down the coast from the tropics –
the East Australian Current.
The coastal geology, plants and
pandanus, change in bird life and, below
the surface, the melange of different fish
add to this new world. Of course, the high-
rise of the Gold Coast makes a statement
too. But things change fast beyond the glitz
and glamour when you now head north.
This is what tempts me most about a
visit to the Sanctuary Cove International
Boat Show (SCIBS) each year. While old
stagers think back to the teetering decks in
its pre-GFC days of excess, when everyone
on a local canal owned a boat and most
bought them right here, the calibre of craft
is no less impressive today. Here you’ll find
the cream of the crop.
Beyond the family and fishing
trailerboats that greet you near the
gates, the latest cool centre consoles
with multiple outboard engines, the hot
watersports craft, the jet skis and the RIBS,
beyond that for the locals one finds the
latest passagemakers with their signature
Portuguese bows to keep the ocean out,
the long-range motorcruisers with air-
conditioned flying bridges, the catamarans
in power and sail with ever-more liveable
deck space, the single-engine Downeast-
style ocean cruisers and the so-called
‘ trawlers’ for couples to command.
In the boat-show world, on this score,
SCIBS is unique compared to Sydney or
Melbourne. With a spare $500k or 10 times
that amount, you can buy a waterborne
home to go north. Those behind the big
Visit the Gold Coast now
the Games are over
name cruising conveyances, the importers
and agents, know the local tropical cruising
grounds well, staging annual owners’ trips
to Fraser Island, Lady Musgrave, and the
Whitsundays for their new customers and
cruising enthusiasts who might then go
The knowledge gained and frequency
with which many of these SE Queensland
boat agents frequent the tropical cruising
highway also paves the way for what works
on boats Down Under and what doesn’t.
At SCIBS, you’ll find serious live-aboard
boats that are particularly well set-up for
ease of use ... short-handed sailing via
electric winches and lines leading back
to the helm, autopilots in saloons, and
docking aids like joysticks, for example.
With such conveniences, cruising
couples can command a 20m boat these
days, with stabilisers adding to the
surefooted feeling at sea, backed by in-
built redundancy of key items like pumps,
second back-up generators and inverter
systems for power. Of course, water is on
tap via the desalinator.
Yep, beyond the trailerboats, fishing
boats and jet skis, SCIBS is the pick of
the boat shows to buy a floating home.
It’s here that you can realise your cruising
dreams in a purpose-built boat rigged by
those who know.
With cheap airfares from the capital
cities, you can leave the boat at Airlie or
Hammo and wing it up for weekends and
longer. Ser vicing is at hand. In the summer
off-season, many folk cruise ‘home’ to the
Marine Precinct in Coomera, just a few
bends away from Sanctuary Cove, and
prep for the new tropical boating season
that lays ahead. Eventually, you might then
head south and back home.
As an interstater, that’s what’s unique
about SCIBS. It’s about buying a boat for
Queensland boating that’s been set-up by
local experts who know their game. The
halls of accessible accessories, ancillary
and engineering items, manned at stands
by the wholesalers and their switched-on
staff, have plenty of top advice as well. And
with decent restaurants and some Gold
Coast accommodation, you can easily
make a weekend of it ... even if you are
still dream boating. h
The new Seawind 1190 fast cruising cat will be a big attraction at 2018 SCIBS.
New cruising catamaran launches, like this
new open-plan Bali, are a big part of the
attraction of SCIBS.
Leopard are launching new power and sail
catamarans at SCIBS.
Links Archive AFLOAT April 2018 AFLOAT June 2018 Navigation Previous Page Next Page