Archive for the 'Whitsundays' Category

by Squage
on Jun 21st, 2007

Whitsundays Sailing Trip!

# A Long, long time ago
# I can still remember
# How tha-(Yes, yes, so yet again this is a catch up session, ok, I’m lazy, I get it. Move on… – Pat)


Hello again! Squage here, reporting from rainy Cairns on this fairly dull Thursday afternoon to fill you in on some more East Coast action wot was had recently(ish).

Airlie Beach JettyBack on the 5th of May, the day after Pat had arrived in Airlie Beach, he made his way along the town’s small high street, up by the lagoon (past the usual tanned beautiful people, including a couple of European ladies who were (stereotypically) somewhat lacking in the “clothes above the waist” department – which Pat hated to see, I’m sure (It was torture. I was nearly late… – Pat)) and along to the marina, beside which the catamaran was docked under the blue skies and golden sun.

He was very much looking forward to his 2 day, 2 night trip on board Powerplay with the other 17 passengers, who were hanging around in the briefing area next to the catamaran.

Having said hellos to everyone and discussed with amusement the level to which the indemnity forms basically tore any rights you had away (to summarise these forms: “If anyone who works for or on behalf of Powerplay f**ks up and hurts or kills you due to their own stupidity, you agree that you’ve got bugger all right to sue them. Oh and if you don’t sign this you’re not getting on board. And no you can’t have your money back.”), the captain came out to brief us. He seemed like a good fella (as he, in fact, was), so that got everyone back into the mood to enjoy themselves whilst not thinking about the lack of monetary protection they had for the trip (Hooray for insurance! – Pat)

It's A Tough Life...Things got better when we were on board and heading out to sea, as Pat and the gang were introduced to the projector in the galley for DVD watching and underwater photo/video viewing (also finding out that a whole DVD chock full of pics and vids from our trip would be available for about $25AUD), then wandered up on deck to discover a) some rope nets at the bow, which you could lie on and get splashed by the upcoming water and b) a hot tub. Yes, a hot tub. On the bow of the catamaran. This was going to be good.

(Squage, wasn’t this blog entry going to feature “More Photos And Less Text” than the last one? – Pat)

Ok, ok, I’ll stop the waffle and tell you instead about the highlights of the trip – including some rather lovely (and amusing) photos:


  • Group Shot!The People – Both the fellow travelers and the crew. Pat felt extremely lucky to have landed on his feet with a great bunch of people. They really made the trip, in Pat’s mind, and he’s kept in contact with a fair few of them since and hopes to meet up with them in future (he’s already got a few beers planned with Ben and Rachel (already back in the UK) in July).
  • The Boat – As a catamaran, it’s smooth through the water (although on the first night the seas did get quite choppy, causing cases of almost-over-the-port-chucking from a couple of people (although, alas, not Pat (I would’ve enjoyed the mick taking opportunity :-) ))). Mmm, nested parentheses. The hot tub on deck as well really added the icing on the cake…
  • The Sights – I’ll mention a few of the key ones below, but let’s just say the Whitsundays are bloody beautiful and the reef around them teeming with life and amazing looking coral bommies.
  • The Weather – Aside from rain on the morning of the last day, it was pretty much consitently sunny and gorgeous!

Day 1

  • Chilling Out On PowerplayIntroductions game – Straight from a training course manual, this involved you having to say a word that describes you (and alliterates with your name) then your name – after having said the description and name of everyone who’d already introduced themselves before you. Pat was last in line, having to remember 17 other descriptions and names, hence it was easy for him to choose “Perplexed Pat”. Other classics were:
    • Ravishing Rachel
    • Jubilant Jade
    • Rambunctuous Ryan (yes, I know!)
    • Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious Samuel. He was the guy before Pat in the game – and was the only name he didn’t remember…
  • Dive 1: Luncheon Bay – Despite the somewhat poor visibility (5 metres), there was lots to sea (eh, eh? (Killl me… – Pat)) such as Nemos and Parrot Fish. Pat just enjoyed being back in the water again, and the freedom of being able to do as he pleased without supervision. Some of the photos from that dive (captured on Christian(the Dive Leader)’s underwater camera:
    Cool Looking Reef (Cauliflower I Think)Arty Silouhetted Shot

  • It's A Tough LifeWarming Up After The Dive – Sitting in the hot tub following the dive as Powerplay sped through the water towards the night’s mooring area, watching the sun go down and feeling the occasional wave splashing Pat refreshingly in his face as the rest of him was kept toasty and warm was, well, not bad to be honest.
  • Introduction of the Game Of Life – A nasty game whereupon if anyone says “mine” they have to do 10 press ups / sit ups. If they refuse? They have to do 20. If they refuse? The Vegemite fines start coming out. It’s an evil game as, when you’re as stupid and forgetful as Pat is you can easily get tricked. Ben: Hey whose is that watch? Pat: Mine. Ben: Whose? Pat: Mine. Ben: *grin* Pat: Oh, b*ll*cks… etc. (Oh and for anyone from Vobble: I lose. Gah. – Pat)
  • Watching Road Trip in the evening – A highlight? Really? Yes, given that Pat hadn’t seen it for a LONG time and that there were a whole crowd of us watching and laughing along to it. UNLEASH THE FURY!

Day 2

  • Early Morning Views – Due to needing to get to Whitehaven Beach before all the tourists, Pat and the gang were up and about before sunrise… which Pat was actually quite glad about given the views:
    Beautiful Early Morning Skies At The Whitsundays

  • Whitehaven Beach – Going here was both awe inspiring and hilarious. Awe inspiring due to views such as this:
    Whitehaven BeachWhitehaven Beach

    And hilarious due to Christian getting us to pose for such photos as Fish Impressions:
    No, Pat, We Said FISH, Not Pob..
    “Jump!” photos:
    Jumping For Joy
    Girls Jump!
    The Human Pyramid and Many Headed Lady:
    Human Pyramid! Wow!  She's Got Tens Of Heads!
    Tiny People on a can:
    Sexy “Looking Out To Sea” Shot:

    Noone needs to see that. I’m so sorry. (What are you saying? – Pat) Oh, nothing, whitearse. (Shut it! At least I’ve GOT one… – Pat) Oooh bitchy!

    Whilst Pat wasn’t joining in with silly photos, he was being artistic / a loner / strange and making a big sand sculpture:
    And finally, following Ben saying mine…
    …it was time to clear off…
    The Crew Again!

  • Dive 2: Manta Ray Bay – Upon arriving at Manta Ray bay, the Pat and the other divers got into their sexy diving attire once more and headed for the depths. For some reason during this dive, Christian decided to film various people and, of course, no silly dances or stupid “upside down” diving moves were performed at all. No:
    Brad Mid-Dance
    Which Way's Up?
    Trust me, when Pat gets back you’re gonna have to get him to show you some of the videos… they’re quite entertaining. Oh and of course, some very mature photos were posed for:
    Lovely Hat
    Nothing Immature Going On Here

  • Dive 3: Manta Ray Bay – Less silliness on this dive occurred (Pat for one was a bit tired anyway through having claimed his watch as his (using the “m” word) just before going off the boat… in full diving gear. Some cool sights were seen… good ol’ Nemo made an appearance along with some Bat fish and a huuuge great coral wall (about 10 metres high).
  • Another Taxing EveningHot Tub with Nachos – Not only were Brad, Nick and Pat feeling like kings watching the world go by from the on-deck hot tub, but then Jen (a fellow traveler from Scotland who’s working on Powerplay as chef) brought out some Nachos for them to have. Brad, Nick and Pat love Jen.
  • Dive 4: Maureen’s Cove – This dive saw only Christian, Brad, Nick and Pat heading into the water – via the James Bond style (i.e. backwards of a dingy). Pat’s decided it’s his favourite way to enter the water, as it’s just a bit more exciting than walking in or forward rolling in. Alas, the lack of silliness of dive 3 fell to the wayside in place of even more crazy dancing and stupidity… and videos of all three fools “running on the spot” in the middle of the water without fins on – all stored in AVI format thanks to Christian (as I say, speak to Pat when he gets back) – alongside some more “interesting” poses:
    Perfectly Mature Yum!
    Inbetween posing, dancing and being unable to move with fins off, some cool “swim throughs” were investigated, lots of bat fish, parrot fish and such were seen – including a shark hiding under a bommie! An awesome dive, and Pat’s favourite by far.

  • Watching the Day’s Photos and Videos – This happened on day 1 too, but today it was really funny. A combination of the comedy photos and videos from Whitehaven Beach alongside the silly diving photos – and “amazing” underwater dancing – gave everyone a really good laugh.
  • Watching White Squall – An odd, yet good film about some boat or other and a bit ol’ deadly wave hitting it and… well… I won’t spoiler it (THEY ALL DIE IN THE END (they don’t (or do they? (maybe… (or maybe not… (Do shut up – Pat) Sorry)))))). Sensible to watch on a boat? Maybe not, but we enjoyed it.

Day 3

  • Moody Morning SkiesWaking Up To Rain In The Face – Ok, not really a “highlight”, but Pat was rather shocked to be woken by the sensation of cold water dripping on his face from the open window above him. Luckily the rain didn’t last long, but it sure as heck woke Pat up. Not very often that happens – even less often when that happens without something being very wrong with your tent or house…
  • Look!  It's An Turtle!Dive 5: Diving Before Sunrise – After waking up at 6 to the rain, Pat and some other brave divers decided to go for a final dive on the trip so were in their sexy diving gear by 6:20am and walking off the back of Powerplay by 6:30am. Following the humour of yesterday’s dives, this was more of a calm affair, allowing Pat and the others to appreciate the lovely coral, the sun rising through the water and the early morning routines of the locals…
  • Where the Bloody Hell Are Ya? – Pointed out to everyone once the diving was finished, it turns out that the island and beach Powerplay was moored by was that used in the “Where the Bloody Hell Are Ya?” Aussie tourist ad a year or so back. That fit model in the bikini? She was here:
    ...The Bloody...

  • Sunbathing on the way back – As this was only a 2 day, 2 night trip that meant that it finished at 11am on day 3… so some sunbathing was done by all (once the clouds had cleared) on the way back. Quite a short day, but a good one.

And by no means the last time Pat was going to see the gang from Powerplay:

Post Trip “Debrief”
Yep, as with the Pro Dive dive training trip (and every trip before that), the inevitable “debriefing” session down the local was attended by most of the folk from the trip. Once again, Pat seems to have a little bit of a blank in his memory from this night – probably due to these factors:
Christian Gets A Couple Of Small Drinks This Is Around About Where It All Went Wrong...

Fortunately (or “fortunately”) in Pat and the others’ case, his camera didn’t suffer from such memory outages:
Special And Pob Jade And Pat In A Rowing Competition
WHO AARE YA? Perfectly Sober Table Dancing
Normal Definite Soberness From Jade

Needless to say, Pat’s Tuesday morning wasn’t one of his best (What he means to say is – I felt like dying. Oh, and I had to stay up til 11pm to get the night bus down to Agnes Water – Pat). He’s a very forward-thinking boy, our Pat…

So there you go! Some piccies from Agnes Water next up… then the hilarity-coupled-with-anger-and-fear that was Pat’s trip to Fraser Island!



by Pat
on May 7th, 2007

Hi! I’m In Airlie Beach!

And I’ve just finished a 2 day, 2 night adventure on the 42 foot Powerplay catamaran around the Whitsunday Islands.

Blogs will be on their way in more detail (just when Squage actually gets time to catch up on things… so probably in Brisbane!) but until then here’s a brief summary of my trip:

  • There were a great group of people – both the 4 crew and the 18 passengers
  • I did five scuba dives, which included:
    • Awesome coral, a reef shark, lots of clown fish (“Nemos”)
    • Video of a few of us running in “mid air” without fins on
    • Very “sexy” wetsuits
    • Videos of the same few doing underwater dancing (Macarena, Birdie Song, Stayin’ Alive, Hokey Cokey, YMCA and some Big-Fish-Little-Fish-Cardboard-Box action)
    • Inappropriate photos with Sea Cucumbers
  • We went to Whitehaven Beach. It was gorgeous – and empty when we got there (rather early in the morning). We spent a few hours enjoying the sights, taking group photos and making sculptures in the sand…
  • We sat in a hot tub on the outer deck as the boat sped through the Whitsunday waters
  • We watched Road Trip (“UNLEASH THE FURY!”) and White Squall (“Should we be watching a film about a massive sea storm whilst on a boat?”) on the 50″ projector display in the galley
  • We sat on the deck getting suntanned/burned(delete as appropriate)
  • We did various press ups through failing the Game Of Life (I’ll explain later)
  • We discussed life, the Universe and everything
  • We had plenty of laughs
  • We’re going out tonight for a meal and a few drinks. I’m hoping it won’t be quite as “few” as after my Pro Dive course last week…

Right now I’m in an Airlie Beach Internet cafe, having just spent a few very difficult hours lounging around by the Airlie Beach lagoon (as with good ol’ Cairns, you can swim in the sea but only if you enjoy dieing from jellyfish stings). The room is, uh, swaying a bit at the moment. I swear it takes longer to get used to being on solid land than being on a boat out at sea.

I’m also very tired. That’s what getting up at 6am to be in the water doing a dive around gorgeous coral reefs (just next to the beach where the “Where The Bloody Hell Are Ya?” advert was filmed) will do to you, I guess.

Tomorrow’s going to be a long day. After waking up to check out at 10am, I will then be in Airlie all day and getting the night bus to Agnes Water/Town Of 1770 at 11:50pm – arriving in AW/TO1170 at 9:55am. I really hope I can sleep on the bus.

Right, til the next time, take care and I hope you’re well!



Giddy and tired