News & Events

Hugh 2017 Kimberley Wet Season means Spectacular Early Dry Season Cruising.

This photo in a February 2017 edition of the Weekend Australian, data from the BOM and first hand reports from Kimberley locals confirm that the Kimberley is having a very wet, wet season, with near record rainfall.

This means that the rivers, creeks and waterfalls will be in full flow, probably for the first few months of the dry season, and not likely to start substantially slowing until late May, or even into June. For those of you sailing there early in the season, there will be some spectacular sights, particularly in places such as the King George and Berkeley Rivers.

Be aware that the full flowing rivers also bring some hazardsfor the unwary sailor.

Floating logs and trees. Huge amounts of debris Read more ....

Visitor Permit System will now be Enforced.

I reported earlier this year in an article on this page headed “Permits are Required to go Ashore in Kimberley Waters“. I have recently been notified by the Dambimangari Aboriginal Corporation (DAC) that they are no longer planning to introduce a paid permit system covering DAC country, but have decided to work with the existing free permit system currently in place and administered by the Department of Aboriginal Affairs (DAA) visitor-map

Details of of the DAC Visitor Permit System are available from the DAC website http://www.dambimangari.com.au/ They include a map, a schedule of permitted landing places with Lat/Long coordinates, a Code of Conduct and details about the Act covering the permit system including possible penalties for breaching the Act.

Please be aware that DAC people are employed as rangers by WA Department of Parks and Wildlife, and will be aboard the DPaW vessels that regularly visit the Lalanggarram / Camden Sound Marine Park, which borders the coastline around much of DAC country.Read more ....

Shifting Sand Bar to the King George River Entrance.

I have had 2 reliable reports that the sand bar outside the mouth of the King George River has shifted, and waypoints used in previous crossing may not be relevant. The King George River Anchorage in the KCCYC website has been updated with the below waypoints for entry through the sand bar.

Below are the new waypoint reported to me by a reliable KCCYC Member. These waypoints are a guide only, and using them for any purpose is entirely at your own risk. You should conduct your own survey of the sand bar in a tender before crossing the bar. Crossing the bar should only be attempted on a rising tide, and near the top of the tide. Read more ....

Fuel at McGowan Island will no longer be available.

I’m reliably informed that the guys running McGowan Island Camping Ground in Napier Broome Bay will be leaving in the next month or two. As a result, the fuel tanker at McGowan Island will shortly be removed. As of today, (11/06/16) they have around 20,000 litres of diesel left, most of which has been pre-booked by vessels currently cruising the Kimberley coast. Once that fuel has sold, the tanker will be permanently removed. Other than the pre-booked fuel, the remainder will be sold on a first come, first served basis. Contact Alex at McGowan’s 08 9161 4748.  Read more ....

Fuel Distributor at Port Hedland wharf accept BP Fuel Cards Only.

If you are expecting to buy fuel at the fuel Wharf in Port Hedland, please be aware that one of our members has just notified me that they will only accept BP Fuel Cards for payment. They accept no other form of payment.

Fortunately, Ken and Linda, on board “Endless Summer”, have sufficient fuel on board to reach Broome. Thanks for the heads up Ken and Linda.

This item was posted 17 May 2016.

Early Visitors to the Kimberley are Reporting Dry Conditions. Cause for Concern!

KCCYC members who are currently sailing the Kimberley coast, and those who recently returned from the coast, are reporting very low creek and river water flows, stemming from lower than usual rainfall this 2016 wet season.

One of our very experienced Members, a couple who live on their boat in the Kimberley over the wet season, have told me that creeks that are normally still flowing heavily at this time of year, are nearly dry, or in some cases, have already dried. And that springs and creeks that can normally be relied upon for good quality fresh water for drinking, bathing, swimming, washing etc; are likely to be dry this cruising season. Read more ....

Permits are Required to go Ashore in Kimberley Waters.

Permits from the Aboriginal Lands Trust (ALT) for yacht crews to go ashore in several places along the Kimberley coast have been a requirement under WA law for several years. But in the past, most crews have been unaware of the permit system.

I am not aware of anyone on a yacht who has been asked to present a permit for going ashore on the Kimberley coast. But permits for land travellers in 4WD’s entering ALT controlled land are commonly inspected, and it’s become standard practice for 4WD‘ers to obtain permits and carry them when visiting ALT controlled land. The Northern Territory also has a permit system for yacht crews who wish to venture ashore along the Arnhem Land and Tiwi Island coasts, which is enforced.Read more ....

Phil is back at Silver Gull Creek.

If you’re Kimberley coast sailing this year, one of the absolute must visit places, is the Squatters Arms at Silver Gull Creek in Yampi Sound.

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Phil enjoying the tank at Silver Gull Creek.

After a few years away from Silver Gull, Phil, the original “Squatter,” is back home – at least for the 2016 dry season. I recently spoke to Phil by phone from his yacht, “Scot Free II”. He was anchored out the front of SGC, and he’s looking forward to having a beer and a chat with yachties who call in for a swim in the tank.

Phil is undecided on Indonesia or Queensland as his next stop after this dry season. But his mate “Scotty” (nothing to do with Phil’s yacht) will be staying on at SGC to house sit over the wet.Read more ....

Your’re invited to the 2016 Annual Beach Party at the Berkeley River.

 Its American Independence Day!!MM

It’s not common knowledge, and you probably don’t know about it, but July 4th is a public holiday on Kimberley coast waters. So do what the Americans do and make a long weekend out of it – sail up to the Berkeley River for a few days relaxing in the sun and join our stupendous celebration. Trust me, it’s not far!

To get the real facts, and all the details, click here. 

Join us for a drink and a chat on 6th March, 2016.

Croc DrinksSailing to the Kimberley? Want to meet other skippers and crews for a chat over a few drinks? Join us on Sunday, 6th March in Perth.
Whether you’re planning your first trip, or an experienced Kimberley cruiser, come along and share your plans, pick up ideas & advise and meet like minded people
.

KCCYC members and non members welcome. Contact Ross for details.

2015 Annual Beach Party at the Berkeley Lodge another great success.

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The 11 boat party fleet anchored up near the mouth of the Berkeley River at sunset with Mt Casuarina in the background.

A few days before the party it looked like it was going to be a quiet day, with just “Makani Kai” and “Kikn Bak” in the Berkeley River. But the next day 6 boats from the east, “Kia Arana”, “Tunnel Vision”, “Exotic Escort”, “Ayla”, “Thalassa”, “Harmony” and “G’day” beat the clock and made it across the Blownapart Gulf with a day to spare. “Ruby Tuesday II”, which had sailed from Perth in just 40 days to get to the party, and experienced well known Kimberley boat “Wings” from Darwin, made it across the Berkeley River bar the night before the party. With 26 of us, we were just 2 crew short of breaking the world attendance record for a KCCYC Beach Party, set last year.Read more ....

“Prime Mover” Completes Circumnavigation.

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We Made It!! “Prime Mover” arrives home in Melbourne.

Congratulations to KCCYC Kimberley Member, Andrew and his family & crew for their successful circumnavigation around Australia on board their Rivieira, “Prime Mover”.Read more ....

Getting Fuel on the Kimberley Coast for Your Vessel in 2015. 

Cruising vessels on the Kimberley Coast in 2015 need to let the fuel suppliers know they are coming. Contact them by phone before you leave Darwin or Broome and tell them roughly when you’ll be taking fuel and approximately how much fuel you will need. It’s also good practice to call them again about a week out from your ETA to confirm.

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Fuel Barge at Dog Leg Creek, Yampi Sound

This is most relevant to power vessels that need larger quantities of fuel in the thousands of litres. There are bigger and very thirsty vessels heading to the Kimberley these days, some travelling together. And it only takes a couple of big boats to turn up at the same time for the suppliers to run out of fuel. It’s their practice to save fuel for vessels they know are coming, Read more ....

Paid Visitor Passes are not far away, if you want to go ashore in the Kimberley.

In recent years the Federal Court has granted exclusive possession to the Aboriginal Communities whose native title claims to these areas have been upheld in court. Exclusive possession essentially means that they own the land, and they have the right to control, or deny access to the land. If you wish to learn more about the Native Title Act and how it relates to these court decisions, click here. Procedures are currently in progress for the introduction of Paid Visitor Pass Systems in at least two of the exclusive possession areas, covering large parts of the land and islands along the Kimberley coast. They are:.Read more ....

Navigation Update. Paspaley Pearls re-open Port George IV Pearl Farm.

Pearl lines

Lines of Pearl Farm Floats.

Paspaley Pearls will be re-opening their extensive pearl farm in Port George IV in 2015. The farm is located west of Augustus Island and south of Entrance Island. Approximate general position is Lat 15°18.6S Long 127°34.5E.Read more ....

Your’re invited to the 2015 Annual Beach Party at the Berkeley River.

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Giant Croc

No doubt you’ve heard about, or seen the Giant Diver puppet and his Niece (recently in Perth). In keeping with our Kimberley theme, and at huge expense to our secret, deep pocketed sponsor, we’ve commissioned a Giant Crocodile puppet.

Get the full details of your exclusive invitation to this mega event here… (link removed)

Would you like to be involved in a little “Citizen Science”? – Kimberley Moth Project.

MothMark Heath, a Perth natural scientist, is compiling a detailed study of West Australian Moths. He asked if any KCCYC Members sailing our northern WA waters this year would participate by collecting moths on board at night, and posting the specimens to him, detailing where they were collected.

Mark believes there is the potential for many species never seen before and new to science. Those who take part will be fully acknowledged in any publications.

He gets the specimens identified by DNA barcoding, then the specimens are deposited at the Australian National Insect Collection at Canberra and the WA Museum.

If you’re interested, contact Mark at [email protected]

Drone helicopter adds a fantastic dimension to sailing photography.

KCCYC Kimberley Member, Hamish Beck sent me these photos from his recent Kimberley trip on board his Riviera 60, “Queste“.

Horizontal Falls

Horizontal Falls

Not only does it provide a completely different viewpoint for photographing a vessel at sea and the beautiful Kimberley coast attractions we sail through, but my immediate thought was how useful it could be for things like taking a peak over the top of a cliff to see what’s at the top of a waterfall before climbing the cliff,Read more ....

Phil (ex Silver Gull Creek) is back on the water.

We were walking along the jetty at Cullen Bay Marina in September and spotted Phil’s unmistakable white and woolly features. He was sitting in a yacht cockpit, deep in study of one of the vessel’s manuals.

"Scot Free II" at Cullen Bay Marina. Expect to see her and Phil anywhere in northern waters.

“Scot Free II” at Cullen Bay Marina. Expect to see her and Phil anywhere in northern waters.

After the normal hello’s, we discovered he was the new owner of this lovely yacht.Read more ....

2014 Annual Beach Party a Great Success.

Berkeley River Lodge Limo picked us up from the river mouth beach.

Berkeley River Lodge Limo picked us up from the river mouth beach.

Thanks again to the team at the Berkeley River Lodge for hosting our club’s only “organised” event.

A new world record for attendance was set for the third year in a row, with 28 Members and Friends off 10 boats making it across the “Blownapart Gulf”  in some fairly ordinary conditions from Darwin and various other Eastern ports. Read more ....

 

Getting Fuel on the Kimberley Coast for Your Vessel. 

Cruising vessels on the Kimberley Coast in 2014 need to let the fuel suppliers know they are coming. Contact them by phone before you leave Darwin or Broome and tell them roughly when you’ll be taking fuel and approximately how much fuel you will need. It’s also good practice to call them again about a week out from your ETA to confirm.

dogleg

Fuel Barge at Dog Leg Creek, Yampi Sound

This is most relevant to power vessels that need larger quantities of fuel in the thousands of litres. There are bigger and very thirsty vessels heading to the Kimberley these days, some travelling together. And it only takes a couple of big boats to turn up at the same time for the suppliers to run out of fuel. It’s their practice to save fuel for vessels they know are coming, Read more ....

Crocodiles are are getting cheekier and more aggressive on the Kimberley Coast. Dinghy attacked, crew stranded.

Two recent accounts of crocodiles stalking boaties on Kimberley Coast waters should serve as a warning to vessels cruising northern Australian waters. Rubber duckies, small dinghies and paddling craft such as kayaks are not suitable as tenders in this area.

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This monster 6M croc followed the writer’s dinghy in Mudge Bay 2013. Possibly the same croc in the Water Pipe Bay incident.

A recent report was of an attack near Water Pipe Bay in Swift Bay around late 2013 dry season. We’re waiting on a first hand account of the incident, but its understood the croc tore the transom out of a small RIB and stalked the 2 crew for days. They were stranded ashore, living off oysters, and luckily managed to find fresh water. Rescue came by way of experienced Darwin based boaties who were about to leave the area and spotted the stranded couple waving frantically.Read more ....

It’s getting closer to the 2014, KCCYC 3rd Annual Beach Party at the Berkeley River.

imagesWe’ve chosen the 30th of June as the date for this year’s spectacular event.

We all hate TAX TIME, so forget about it this year!! Join other financially detoxed KCCYC members and friends at the fabulous Berkeley Lodge for the Annual Beach Party/New Financial Year’s Eve Party. Read more ....

Phil and Marion Call it a Day at Squatters Arms.

Most visitors to the Squatters Arms in Silver Gull Creek, located on the isolated West Kimberley Coast, describe it in terms such as a little piece of paradise” and heaven on earthWhy would you retire from paradise?

Most of us bury our pets in the back yard. Not Phil!!

Most of us bury our pets in the back yard. Not Phil!!

The remoteness of Silver Gull Creek adds to its appeal, especially to the adventurous, cruising yachtie in many of us. But unfortunately, the down side of such a remote location is the total lack of Read more ....

Update on the Camden Sound Marine Park.

Click here for a copy of the latest update newsletter from West Australian Fisheries and Dept of Wildlife on the Camden Sound Marine Park, which had now been renamed Lalang-garram/Camden Sound Marine Park.

Whale and calf

This mother Humpback and her calf would have been very difficult to photograph from 500 meters away.

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2013 KCCYC Annual Beach Party – a Major Success Story.

We expected 5 yachts to show up to the 2013 KCCYC Annual Beach Party at the Berkeley Lodge on 10th July , but “Get This” we set a new world record for the Annual Beach Party attendance – 8 yachts, totalling 23 crew, plus the Lodge staff and half a dozen bewildered guests that were staying at the Lodge.

A big thanks to Martin and Kim Pierson-Jones for allowing us to use The Berkeley Lodge facilities.

Berkeley River 2013

Boat Park out of the fresh SE breeze about 1 mile up stream from the Berkeley Lodge beach. From left – Enigma, Yandanooka, MV Liberty, Osborne Star, Rafiki, Dubonnett

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Reports of Dismal Barramundi Fishing on the Kimberley and Top End Coasts.

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Members Beware of Increased Fisheries and Department of Conservation Presence in Kimberley Coast Waters.

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Berkeley River Lodge Plans to Build Airstrip at their East Kimberley Coastal Resort.

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Date set for the Kimberley Coast Cruising Yacht Club’s 2013 Annual Beach Party – 10th July 2013.

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Fremantle to Bali Race and Rally Fleet to Cruise Home Through The Kimberley.

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New Pages to be Added to Club Website.

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Inaugural Annual Beach Party, a quiet but fun day.

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Berkeley River Resort Joins the club.

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Marion and Phil of “The Squatters Arms” fame join the club.

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Three Boats Leaving Airlie Beach for The Kimberley in May 2012.

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Annual Beach Party at Berkeley River 4th July 2012.

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Darwin to Dili & Darwin Kupang Rallies start in July.

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