Exclusive Lady




The photos above from Dean Wright show the game boat Exclusive Lady fishing the Duke Contest in 1984. While the photos are a little ‘grainy’ from the scanning of 33 year old film negatives, the Lady still looks majestic. Thank you Dean for sharing 🙂

Question of the day woodys – what more do we know about her?


The Ultimate Woodys Friend

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Ever thought -what’s the name of that boat or who designed her, or who owns her? well if its wood, a classic & the owner is a member of the CYA – then finding the answer is easy – grab a copy of the NZ Classic Yacht Association Register for the ridiculously low price of $15 & you will have access to the ultimate classic woody must have. Fathers Day is fast approaching…….. drop a hint to the partner / kids / grand children 🙂
To grab a copy (or 2 – one for home & one for the boat) contact the CYA on this email link admin@classicyacht.org.nz


Upper Harbour Cruise to the Riverhead Hotel



Upper Harbour Cruise to the Riverhead Hotel

Yesterday had the makings of a stay at home day – the forecast was looking very average & the All Blacks ‘v’ Ireland test was kicking off at 9.00am. Unfortunately the gods only smiled on us once – the weather never eventuated but the AB’s dropped their guard & for the 1st time ever lost to the boys in green. Given the location – Chicago, I say it wasn’t a real test 😉
The following classics from the CYA launch fleet made the trip – Mahanui, Te Arahi, John Dory, Te Hauraki, Trinidad, Lucille, Juanita, Raindance, Matira, Lucinda, Kumi & the motor-sailer Bliss.  These were joined by others who traveled by car. Over 100 gathered on the outer decks for lunch & one or two cleansing beverages.
Another great day & special thanks to the organizer – CYA Launch Captain Angus Rogers, Tony Stevenson for the use of the Tino Rawa Trust tender ‘Whistleblower’ & the publican, Stephen Pepperell, always nice to greeted at the wharf on arrival.

CYA Patio Bay BBQ & Xmas Race Weekend 2015

CYA Patio Bay Weekend 2015
photos ex Alan Houghton & Fiona Driver

Just back from another spectacular wooden boat weekend at Patio Bay, Waiheke Island. The weather was good for the yacht racing but a little rolly in the bay. This put a few owners off anchoring but most bit the bullet & dropped the pick & were rewarded with another brilliant evening ashore at Margaret & Burt Woolicott’s waterfront bach. It had all the ingredients of a classic kiwi boating function – sun, sand, wood fired BBQ’s, the odd cold beverage, a barrel of rum, fire works & lots of nice people.

The evening was made special by the presentation to Chris McMullen of the CYA Outstanding Achievement Trophy for services to classic boating. See the previous ww post for more details.

Even yours truly got a mention in dispatches – I was the surprised recipient of the 2015 Patio Bay Trust Book Award – for my work on/with setting up this site & ensuring that future generations will be able to better experience our wooden boating history.

Enjoy the photos. Sorry that its light on yachts but conditions did not suit bobbing around in a wee dinghy & by now I hope most people realize that a ‘drive-by’ past Raindance almost always ensures a photo on ww 🙂

Must also mention the  magnificent sight of having Viking sailing in the fleet.

I have posted on the CYA forum photos from the yacht post race prizing giving  – link here


Yacht race results here http://classicyacht.org.nz/sailing/

10-12-2015 Sailing Photos below ex Carolyn Anderson (Waimiga)


A Woodys Weekend


A Woodys Weekend
photos ex Alan H

Just back from a really great woody weekend. The CYA hosted a gathering at Fairway Bay Marina, Gulf Harbour that saw the boats all rafted up in the ‘gated’ upper lagoon. We were greeted by Grant the marina manager in his tender that made berthing easy for those without bow-thruster ;-). In fact Grant was the perfect host & made the weekend extra special.
I have to say that rafting up & boat hopping is such a cool thing, perfect way to catch up & tell fibs about your boat while enjoying a refreshing .
When I slid Raindance alongside Trinidad the smell was amazing, bread baking – the latest additional to Trinny is a ‘fitted’ bread maker. It doesn’t get much better than waking up to the smell of bread baking 🙂
Nice to see CYA vice chairman Peter Mence mooching around in his rather cute gaff rigged clinker.
After an afternoon of socializing we all went ashore for a BBQ at the marina bar. Nathan Herbert & Jason Prew were the the chefs on the BBQ & did a superb job, its not often I trust someone to cook my thick-cut aged sirloin steak.
Special mention to the CYA members that turned up by road, Sue & Mark Edmonds (Monterey), Ian Miller (Alpheus) & the new owners of Young Nick.

Included are some random photos of woodys I spotted along the way. Enjoy.

ww is not the place to air ones dirty laundry but I have to say that despite the amazing job that CYA launch captain Nathan Herbert did promoting & hosting the weekend – 7 boats is a p_ss poor turn out from a fleet of 200+ vessels. For those that did not attend, again you missed a great event. Maybe next time………………………?

Photos below from Ken Ricketts taken at arrival & departure.

Now heading back I got a call on the mobile from Jason Prew to say Dolphin had entered Milford Creek (marina) on the wrong side of the channel mark & was aground & could I try & tow them off. When I arrived it was looking like a long day/night for the crew of Dolphin………., Milford is intimidating to even the locals so I was on high alert as we nudged Raindance in VERY close. Robyn was on rock watch & telling me “they are right in front of us”. We managed to get a line bow to stern but she would not budge – not surprising when you look at the photos from later in the day, with the tide out. Hopefully she re-floated last night. She was on-route to Geoff Bagnall’s boat yard so any damage will not be a problem to Geoff & his crew. One negative was that in the process we pulled the outboard off the stern 😦


2015 Mahurangi Regatta Weekend – 70+ Photos

2015 Mahurangi Regatta Weekend – 70+ Photo Parade

The photos tell the story of the weekend – perfect weather, stunning boats & nice people having a great time. Todays post is just a slice of the 3 days of classic wooden boating. I have 100’s of photos that will filter thru into ww over time. Not all are ‘picture perfect’ – its hard to helm the boat (solo) & take photos in a very congested waterway.
As always you’ll see a mix of motor-boats & yachts because even though some people seem blind to the world of classic launches – the weekend is in fact the biggest collection of classic wooden boats afloat in one place in NZ. Remember people – its all about wooden boats 🙂
Saturday nights prize giving & dance ashore at Scotts Landing was one of those evenings out of the bag – a perfect sunset to cap the day off, the panoramic photo above was sent to me by Mark Lever (owner of the very smart 1926, B.J.L. Juke designed launch – Nereides) & portrays the scene perfectly.
I counted 30+ classic CYA launches around the bays – I’m sure there were more, just didn’t see them all. The launches had a wee parade around the bays on the Saturday to fly the flag for the CYA launch fleet. There was a ‘names in the hat’ draw at the prize giving & one of our newest members – Bill Mitchinson owner of MV Gay Dawn, who traveled up from Tauranga for the weekend, won the ‘Motor Launch Log Trophy’. Now all we need is for last years winner (a non CYA member) to play the game & return the trophy 😦
The trip north for me had one big objective – to see Pauline & Harold Kidd’s just re-launched classic launch – Romance II afloat. Harold & boat builder Marco Scuderi have rebuilt R2’s dog-house & tram-top to pretty dam close to the day in 1919 she slipped down the Bailey & Lowe ramp. In my eyes her lines & proportions are spot-on. There is a photo of her in todays post but I will feature her in more detail on ww tomorrow.
Winners Are Grinners – the CYA boats, skippers & crew cleaned up all the major sailing races at the regatta – photos from the prize giving at the end of the post.
Enjoy & remember you can enlarge any photo by clicking on it 😉


This is what makes the regatta racing so special – where else do you get sailing like this?

Yes, there were life jackets on-board for everyone

Saturday Night Prize Giving & Dance


Grinners Are Winners

CYA Patio Bay Weekend 2014

CYA Patio Bay Weekend 2014

This weekend is the best event on the CYA calendar, ticks all the boxes – enjoy the photos, I took hundreds – below is a slice of woody nirvana. Enjoy 🙂

As always – click on the photos to enlarge 😉

CYA Launches

Some Sailing

Party Time

Prize Giving

Now hows this for a mark foy finish after 17.8nm – take a bow Steve Cranch – the King of handicapping 🙂

Chad T When He Discovered It Wasn’t Fancy Dress This Year 🙂

I knew it was going to be a good day when we had a visit from these beauties

A Woody Weekend

A Woody Weekend

photos from alan houghton & brian fulton.

Just back from the CYA Waiheke Cruise, 9 woodys did the trip to the bottom end & despite the weather forecast – enjoyed stunning weather. It was great to see some of our new members joining in – Seagull (Lyndsay & Paul Burton), Manapouri (Suzie & Mark Sorrenson) & Ngaio (Lancia & Ian Kohler). The hardy souls (yes I was one) that did the Stoney Batter walk on Saturday morning certainly earned the ice cold beer that greeted them back at the beach front Man O’ War Winery. It was extra nice not having the normal long weekend / xmas period crowds.
On the subject of MOW, I have to say that the Spencer family have done Auckland proud with their total Island experience, the farm is beautiful (if you can say that about a working farm) & the winery has added another gem to boaties things to do at the bottom end list. There were a few teething problems in the early days but now it very very slick.

Late Saturday afternoon saw the flotilla move over to Rotoroa Island for a BBQ, again another of Auckland’s old families – the Plowmans – need to be thanked for their generosity, the Island & it facilities are amazing. The sunset was the icing on the cake.

On route to Rotoroa we had one of those wow on the water moments – the 300′ super yacht Nahlin cruised by. Most saw her berthed at the Viaduct but out & up close in our gulf – a breathtaking sight. I used to say Rawhiti had the best bum in the fleet (technically she still does) but the stern on Nahlin is a work of art. As Barbara Cooke (Trinidad) commented “I think she’s the most beautiful thing that ever floated on water. Hauntingly and nostalgicly romantic”.

Enjoy the photos, we enjoyed the weekend.

Keeping Fine Company

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Keeping Fine Company

photos ex Brian Fulton
Anchored this morning at Rotoroa Island along with a fine collection of classic woodys. Yesterday after lunch at Man ‘O War vineyard (Waiheke Island) several of us where motoring across the Waiheke Channel when we were ‘joined’ by the rather grand 300′ super yacht Nahlin, owned by British industrial entrepreneur Sir James Dyson. Truely a magniciciant 1930 ship.
The CYA gang all went a shore for a BBQ dinner at Rotoroa & later a very shinny black chopper landed to collect Sir & Lady James who had spent the day on Rotoroa.
We were treated to a stunning sunset.

Waitangi Day CYA Picnic @ Motuihe Island


Waitangi Day CYA Picnic @ Motuihe Island

Waitangi Day CYA Classic Picnic @ Motuihe Island

Thursday 6th February – Put this one in your diary!

Motuihe beach picnic, a new Classic Yacht Association social event aimed at the whole family.

Pack a picnic lunch, chuck the kids on board and roll up to Motuihe Island around 11.00a.m. for a lazy day on the beach.

Its a whooper tide – 3.3m @ approx 1.30pm.

All classics and hang-a-bouts are invited.

Refer flyer above for full details

Don’t own a boat but would like to attend? email       drenall@gmail.com

The story of Haydon Afford’s 3 month circumnavigation aboard Kumi his 1905 Bailey & Lowe launch


The story of Haydon Afford's 3 month circumnavigation aboard Kumi his 1905 Bailey & Lowe launch

From the pen (no computer) of Haydon Afford

It seemed like a good idea for years so in the end I said, 15th December I’m leaving. Which I did with a sack of potatoes, sack of onions, sack of rice, sack of muesli, sack of bread mix, a new foresail (instead of the sack I’d previously had) and heaps of diesel (not in a sack).

The plan was simple: out to The Barrier and turn right, so I did that and went to Great Mercury Island. Great feed on the most luxurious boat I’d ever been on and belonging to a chef from Whitianga. Next day off to Tauranga, but all friendliness was off the menu when they found I was not insured. I anchored on the other side of the harbour and in the middle of the night things felt wrong, so I looked out the window and saw the wharf motoring past. That was definitely wrong, so I re-anchored with heaps of scope and thereafter the chain was out the front, not in its locker.

Off to Whakatane and surfed in the bar. Wowy Zowy. They closed it for several days then, while it looked like Piha; then off to Omaio Bay, then Hicks Bay, then Te Araroa to anchor ready for East Cape. I don’t think Te Araroa is the perfect anchorage, but at least the wind was off the land, if rather fast … OK though, plenty of scope.

East Cape deserves its reputation and I noticed that the waves can get quite big off the east coast end. You have to go over them sort of diagonally, but by the time I got to Gisborne, it was nice and sunny and calm and I had decided to convert the non structural bulkhead at the front of the boat into a structural bulkhead. While I was there, Gisborne had a big song and dance and boozy festival, which doubles their population, but I was too involved with timber, glue and bolts to go to it. Also, I might have been a bit old.

On to Napier and off Portland Island in the middle of the night the sea decided to give the strengthening a big test, but no more creaking and groaning. I have a fuel tank built into the forepeak. It’s meant to hold 300 litres, but when you fill it up you have to pay for 500 litres, so it might be quite heavy for poor old Kumi!

Napier Yacht Club was very friendly and there I met Bill, who agreed to come to Wellington with me because I was a bit scared. Turned out perfectly fine and I learned a lot from Bill, who has coastal skipper qualifications. Cape Palliser was calm, but lots of big swirly bits.

Wellington forecast was terrific: 50 knot northerly, changing 50 knots southerly later that day. Outlook following three days: 50 knots northerly, followed by 50 knots southerly, etc.

After 10 days, a big high appeared and we were off to Marlborough Sounds. Great if you’re into vertical bush with a thin rind of rock at the bottom and 40m deep, 20m from the shore. I found a couple of nice beaches though, then to D’Urville Island. Admiralty Bay suddenly turned very windy, and wavy, dead ahead. Makes you go slow, but on D’Urville Island the bay that looked good on the chart was actually a pub with moorings for the night. They said 50 knots was blowing, but that was normal.

Next morning, French Pass at low tide was calm, (but obviously could push you where you did not want to go), and down to Nelson in brilliant sunshine. Up to Golden Bay and into Tarakohe harbour, which I left at 2am for the West Coast. Farewell Spit in the early hours; Cape Farewell and the Navy spots me. A warship of some sort comes roaring over, straight at me, big bow wave, big rooster tail – oh! oh! It’s OK, he applies full port rudder so that I can see his beautifully anti-fouled starboard bottom. Someone on the after deck waves and he is gone into the mist. I wouldn’t mind a ride on that little number.

Cape Farewell is correctly named, because the South Island disappears behind mist there and does not reappear until you’re getting up close and personal with the Greymouth Bar. The night off Westport, though, was the most spectacular of the journey. The moon was full and the sea so calm that there was no reflection of the moon off the water except just on the horizon.

Then a ripple must have started, because the moon’s reflection reappeared as spot lights in the line from me to the moon … pow, pow, pow they would go, very sudden on and off. Lasted a minute or two, then more ripples appeared and the reflection next to the boat appeared as almost stationery zebra stripes. These very slowly undulating stripes gradually crept out to the horizon, turning off the spot lights.

The Greymouth Bar was fine, fishermen friendly. Haydon has a big sleep. Milford Sound spectacular, but tour boat operators definitely not friendly. And on down Fiordland where there is a lot more vertical bush, strong winds and hard to find a good anchorage. I think we are rather spoilt in the Hauraki Gulf!

It nearly all ended at Riverton, where I misread the GPS coordinates. With zero visibility in fog this was not the perfect place to do that, but I noticed the depth was wrong (not enough), so it was OK.

Then Stewart Island.South of Mason Bay, the waves and wind got up to their normal size again (can’t see over them, rigging makes a whirring sound) and I’m aiming for ‘Easy harbour’. I make the turn, so I’m now running with the waves – fast and easy, (Kumi is a fantastic following sea boat), straight at a very smooth and clean cliff. Not very high, but looks very wet.

I dodge an ugly reef off the island to the left. I dodge an even uglier ‘sister’ on the right, but I’m having trouble identifying the rocks off the entrance to this harbour. It is all rocks and Kumi is having a terrific time surfing down the waves at 10 knots straight at them.

Half a mile and it is all over. I look left and there it is. Hard to port, plenty of throttle and all is soft, but still not easy. Do I anchor and eat my celebratory steak at the silver sand beach with the sapphire water? Or, do I go 300-400m to the right to the golden sand beach with emerald water? Decisions, decisions.

Next morning, great – gone calm again around South Cape, and up to Port Pegasus where there is more vertical bush. But it is not so deep. I even managed to hit the bottom. Then up to Golden Bay in Paterson Inlet (in time to join a team for pub quiz night). Then over to Bluff, where the tidal range and the tidal overfalls in the channel are big.

Out again at dawn for Port Chalmers, past the attractive cliff, beach, harboury bays and rolling hills background of the south coast. Round Nugget Point and next day cruise into Carey Bay at Port Chalmers. Then off to Akaroa, once again dodging cruise ships, which seem common around the coast.

At Akaroa, 100% fog – better not misread the GPS here because it’s cliffs, not a beach. I sail out of a curtain into brilliant sunshine and I’m half a mile inside Akaroa Harbour. I think I’m clever this time.

Next, Lyttleton (rather wrecked by the earthquake), and another over-nighter to Port Underwood. This leg used too much oil. Across to Wellington again and through the ‘Karori Rip’. You are supposed to avoid this area, but it was a calm sunny day. Then ahead the sea went white, so I thought, oh! oh! and hung a hard right. I stopped the 5 knot nonsense and started the 12 knot nonsense … wow that water moves! Then it started going white around me and we seemed to be going up and down a lot. It all happened very quickly, and then, 10 minutes later, we were out of it. It’s probably best to avoid this area.

At Wellington, after lots of phone calls to James Mobberley (thanks James), I replaced an O-ring and we stopped using oil.

Then New Plymouth, through Hokianga, more over-nighters in what seems like the west coast of NZ to me – calm, fine weather with the wind and waves more behind than ahead, motor purring, sails drawing GPS speeds over 6 knots. Captain happy.

Hokianga Bar is quite shallow and I waited there till the weather was such that it would change SE to SW at the top of the Island. This worked. Anchored at Ahipara, then up to Maria Van Dieman, Reinga, North Cape (very rough) and, because it was now SW, across to Parengarenga to the lee of the land and down to Henderson Bay for the night.

Next day called on Mangonui, then Whangaroa, where Kumi spent 25 years as a crayfish boat. The family of the fishermen were happy to meet her there. My cousin boarded here and we went to the Bay of Islands in perfect conditions. Next day was good, but forecast not so good, so overnight to Kawau and waited out the 35 knot SE by sleeping, then next day back to a terrific welcome home party. Thank you everybody.

Now if you are a Classic Yacht Association NZ member, put a circle in your diary for the evening of June 11th, 6pm at the RNZYS, as Haydon is the guest speaking at our club night.
Haydon’s a bit zany – never owned a cell phone, a camera or a computer, so don’t expect a slide show, this will be a good old fashioned story telling session. RSVP (soon it will be popular) to Barbara Cooke dbcooke@ihug.co.nz
When Haydon sent me this story from a friends computer, he very proudly told me I was the first person he had ever sent an email to.

Centennial Rudder Cup Winner

Raindance the floating head office for waitematawoodys picked up another shiny thing at the CYA prize giving last night. Will sit nicely alongside the Motor Launch Trophy won last year.
This year Raindance collected the Centennial Rudder Cup, the trophy donated by Pauline & Harold Kidd to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Rudder Cup Race, one of the most significant events in our motor launch history.
Special mention should be made to my boat boy Simon Yates.