It looks like there is a window of opportunity opening up that will allow us a safe crossing of this bit of water. Yes, we will skip ahead to do it – but this bit of water can be challenging and we need to think of our personal safety above all else.
First off, This lake is a body of water to be respected – it is vast and quite shallow. Conditions can change from mirror flat to 1m breaking waves in next to no time, so when looking for a window to cross the lake above all else we are looking for several things.
- Ideally, we want the wind to be less than 15km/h (the lower the better)
- The crossing of the lake proper from Point Pomanda to Point Sturt is 26km, and being realistic, plan on that taking up to 4 hours (much longer if things turn bad).
- It is about a 2hr paddle out to the Point from Wellington and a further 2hrs at the other end up to Clayton, so we need a minimum of an 8 hour “clean” weather window.
The 7 day forecasts are looking to be pretty good for a Night Crossing on Friday 8th.
We look at 3 locations – Wellington, Milang and Clayton.
So far so good, Wellington from about 8pm the wind will have dropped down to about 10km/h.
Milang, on the Northern side about the 1/2 way mark also indicates this is a pretty good window.
Clayton, our destination, is also pretty good as well.
If you look carefully, whilst the direction is not the best, it is fairly constant and unlikely to change too much.
What you can’t see on these is that on the Friday, mid afternoon the winds will be around the 15-20km/h and that by midday on Saturday it will be up to about the same 15-20km/h, and getting worse on Saturday evening.
This particular window is nearly 12 hours, which is pretty good. The only downside – is that this is the only night of the whole month where we will not have ANY moon at all – it will be a dark crossing. But, much better a dark crossing than a windy (and dangerous) crossing.
Of course, this is 6 days out at the moment and we need to re-assess in a couple of days time to double-check if this window changes!
Given that if we look at a longer time period, the wind is fairly stable over about a 48 hour period, but we need to assess when we are going to be in a position to tackle this bit of water.
Stay tuned – and we will be making a final decision 24 hours out.