The afternoon and evening were predicted to blow up even stronger, so the plan was to scoot across the Whitsunday Passage and into the shelter of Nara Inlet.
I would have to say it was the best sail yet on the new boat. We had full sail up, and if it was even just a whisker stronger, or a longer trip, we would've been seriously reefing down. Everything I've been told, read about or overheard about cruising catamarans is that unlike a monohull, which heels over and spills wind from its sail, they don't let on when they're overstressed. Reefing at just a little over 20 knots is sensible. But the boat just charged ahead, cracking up to 12 knots, smooth and powerful. It was like we were running twin V8 engines....quiet ones. A memorable sail!
Once we'd entered Nara Inlet, we were amazed at the numbers of boats the same plan as us for the night...it's one of only 3-4 anchorages in the entire Whitsundays that can comfortably deal with 35 knots of wind. So it was a bit sketchy finding a spot.
Once we'd anchored, I launched the dinghy and took Rod and Andrea for a run up to the end of the inlet to look at the Cave Paintings. Casually mooched around and came back to Mary on the big boat after a couple of hours, relaxed a bit and AAAAGH! Dragged anchor! Very luckily fending off from another catamaran which was parked 100 metres away from our original spot. So, with my tail between my legs we skulked up further into the inlet, set the anchor carefully and let out LOTS of chain. And sat on deck for awhile until I was satisfied we weren't going anywhere unplanned.
By sunset, there were over 90 yachts hiding out in the inlet....it looked like the New York skyline.