PS Queensland to Vanuatu

Prevailing easterly winds, contrary currents, and the many dangers dotted about the southern part of the Coral Sea make this one of the most diffi

Sandy Cape, either Capricorn or Curtis Channels should be used to reach the open sea before laying a course for Dumbea Pass, at the SW extremity of New Caledonia. The route for boats leaving through Capricorn Channel goes to WP PS1022 halfway between Wreck and Cato Reefs. Boats leaving through Curtis Channel should stay south of Cato Reef by setting course for WP PS1024. The routes converge at WP PS1025 outside Dumbea Pass. This leads into Noumea, New Caledonia's capital and only port of entry Approaches into Noumea are difficult at night and should not be attempted. Arriving boats should contact Port Moselle on channel 67 to arrange a berth at the visitor's dock. The marina will contact customs and immigration for clearance.

cult routes in the South Pacific. Direct passages from ports in Northern Queensland should not even be considered and an alternative route cho

Best time: Tropical storms: Charts:

Pilots:

Cruising guides: Wayfoints:

April to May, mid-September to October

December to March

BA: 4602

US:602

US: 126,127

Landfalls of Paradise.

Departure

Intermediate

Landfall

Destination

Distance (M)

PS1031 Capricorn 22'50'S, 152C00'E

PS1032 Wreck 22'45'S, 155'00'E PS1033

23=10'S. 166'50'E PS1034 Kune 22'52'S, 167'37'E PS1035 Mare 21'35'S, 168a10'E

PS 1036 Efate SW 17'46'S, 168n12'E

Port Viia

17j44'S, 168'18'E

1189

sen to reach the islands of Vanuatu without having to fight the elements all the way. The best tactic is to make a detour to the south, inside the Great Barrier Reef. Having reached the open sea via the Capricorn Channel, the route joins route PS94, if a nonstop passage to Vanuatu is intended.

An easier alternative is to join route PS102 and follow directions as far as Noumea from where Vanuatu can be reached via the islands spread out among the two groups. Such an approach has certain attractions as it avoids the dangerous reefs to the west of New Caledonia and offers the possibility of breaking up the voyage in some of the islands of New Caledonia or Southern Vanuatu, if the winds prove too much to cope with.

The suggested direct route takes its leave from Australia through the Capricorn Channel, from where a course is set to pass south of the various reefs and round the island of New Caledonia from

Because of both contrary winds and current sailing a direct route from Queensland to Fiji would be a very difficult undertaking. The most feasible way to reach Fiji is by a detour to the south where better winds might be found to make the required easting (route PS104A). Although the recom the south. From a point SE of Kune Island (WP PS1034), the course is altered to pass to windward of the Loyalty Islands to WP PS1035, SE of Mare Island. From that point, the course can be altered for WP PS1036, SW of Efate, in the approaches to Port Vila. The route then enters Mele Bay to reach Port Vila, the capital of Vanuatu. On arrival in Port Vila, boats should tie up to the quarantine buoy and wait to be inspected by a health officer. Port Vila Radio should be contacted on VHF channel 16 to request that the relevant officials are informed.

Another alternative is to take a route which goes through Grand Passage, north of New Caledonia, as described in route PS94. On that route, a better wind angle may make it possible to stay on the starboard tack NE of Grand Passage and sail to Espiritu Santo Island, where it is possible to clear into Vanuatu at Luganville (15°31'S, 167°10'E).

mended tactic is to sail south of latitude 32 °S, where the chances of finding favourable winds are higher, a slightly more northerly route can be taken should the winds permit this. Ideally one should wait for a forecast of westerly winds before leaving. Even with favourable winds, the route should

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