No single vessel could ever hope to fully explore this amazing and remote area, but it's been a delight to experience so much of it. I'll keep blogging over the next year or so to tell many of our coral cruising stories from the past and present; plus provide as much useful information as I can. I will show dates on destination stories because conditions may have changed since I visited. Negative events such as cyclones, coral bleaching, Crown of Thorns starfish, moving sands , etc can cause rapid deterioration , alternatively, when conditions are good places improve and can turn from ugly rubble to become beautiful and pristine . This wilderness is forever changing. 

Tydeman reef and nearby sand cays — 2015-2019

By Robin Jeffries | March 2, 2016

Tydeman Reef and cay Anchored behind Tydeman Reef’s substantial sand cay you are a mere 20km from Cape Melville. This is as close as the outer GBR ever gets to the mainland over its entire 2,300 km length. So close that you could easily explore the cay then high tail it back to Pipon or…

North Brocken Passage and Pipon reef — past Lizard Island — posted March 2016

By Robin Jeffries | March 1, 2016

Pipon Reef is a reasonable anchorage in 20-25 knot south east trade winds. At high tide, take your dingy over the top of the reef where you will find hundreds of turtles and an occasion indifferent dugong feeding on the small crustaceans.   The scant remains of two light house cottages from the past are on…

Howick Group East — past Lizard Island — posted March 2016

By Robin Jeffries | March 1, 2016

Now, try straying just a little east of Ingram Island. Stapleton Island is home to many thousands of marine birds on a well developed grassy cay. It is an amazing sight watching them buzz around their eggs and chicks like swarming bees. You will find Sooty, Crested & Caspian Terns, Noddies, Boobies, and maybe some…

Howick Islands — you have past Lizard Island — posted March 2016

By Robin Jeffries | March 1, 2016

Forty nautical miles past Lizard Island brings you to 15 plus fascinating little Islands and cays waiting to be explored. Most have an exposed sandy patch on their NW corner at the low half of the tide, so it’s easy to land via dingy after anchoring nearby. Ingram Island is a central point to fan…

Getting past Lizard island and the Cod hole — posted March 2016

By Robin Jeffries | March 1, 2016

A little excitement  builds as you reach iconic Lizard Island, 50nm North of Cooktown. The fabulous anchorage of Mrs Watson’s Bay usually has 5-20 boats parked within. A more protected and beautiful place is hard to imagine; a perfect location to relax and meet like-minded boaties. It’s magical beach, and clear water are very enticing.…

Getting past Lizard island-it all starts at Cooktown — posted March 2016

By Robin Jeffries | March 1, 2016

I was asked to write a guide about cruising the next 80nm north of Lizard Island. It is a largely ignored region with wonderful areas to explore. However where do I begin? Cooktown is the obvious place; it’s the last town in which to provision. So, enjoy a walk up Cooktown’s sprawling main street where…

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