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Home / Newsletters / Newsletter - December 2023
Home / Newsletters / Newsletter - December 2023

Newsletter - December 2023

GHYC Commodore's Logbook December 2023

Hello All,

Firstly, I'd like to extend a very happy Seasons greetings to all members and adherents at the club, as we remember those who help tirelessly in our day-to-day club operations.

Your club is proudly supported by a strong Executive Leadership team, and a strong social team that continues to work tirelessly to advance the club.

Our membership numbers are up on last year, a testament to the many fantastic sailing and social events offered.

Our everlasting thanks are extended to the various committees and groups that keep GHYC afloat, the social events have been outstanding this year, culminating in the recent music night by the Whangaparaoa College as a showcase of the talent we have coming, simply a brilliant night.

Another big thankyou to our restaurant and bar staff, often the centre of attention on a Friday and Saturday evening.

As we slide once again into the festive season, we have much to be thankful for.

Summer is just around the corner and our days are getting longer, our fleet is all up to scratch and summer holidays are being planned.

Once again, our emphasis needs to be centred around safety. There are many opportunities to be enjoyed but let's be mindful of how small incidents can lead to large consequences if not handled with some forward thought, planning and practice.

Please spend some time on your club's website, all details of upcoming events are listed.

Evolution Sails WOWW details and registrations are now available online at our website for what promises to be another exciting weekend in mid-March for the ladies. Lock it into you calendar now to avoid missing out as numbers will be limited.

Our annual Christmas Dinner is coming up on the 15th Dec, please remember to book your tickets online for what promises to be another delicious meal, enjoyable conversation and DJ entertainment.

At Gulf Harbour we enjoy the doorstep to some of the best cruising grounds in the world, let's get out and enjoy it, and don't forget to fly your club pennant (available form the office).

Phil Shaw

Commodore GHYC

WOWW 2024

Planning is well underway for another Women on Water Weekend (WOWW) which will take place from 15-17 March 2024. Entries opened on 10 November and most boat owners who offered their boats for this year's inaugural event have indicated that they are available again. We are hoping that a few more of our club's boat owners will get involved in the 2024 event. If you're considering entering your boat, but are a little unsure, then speak to someone who entered their boat this year. Most found it to be an enjoyable experience.

Word has spread regarding the success of the 2023 event, and we were approached earlier in the year by a crew from Sydney asking if we could find them a boat to sail on in the 2024 event. Club member Peter Strathdee, who owns Azure a Farr 1020, has agreed to host the Sydney crew on his boat.

From Anni Browning one of the Sydney Crew

We are a team of six. Our skipper, Lyn Evans, has sailed all her life and won many club races. She has also run a successful boat relocation business moving boats of all types and many sizes. Finally she owns and runs a very successful and award winning Sydney electric cabling business.

The crew sail regularly with her, most of us with many years crewing and some of us skippering as well. I owned and successfully raced a Catalina 30 for a decade. I have raced one design regattas in Sydney and Chicago.

Together we have consistently been on the podium of every Balmain Sailing club spinnaker series in Lyn's 31 foot North Shore yacht called Sassy. We have also raced in Lake Macquarie, Hamilton Island, and Phuket. We were planning the Cork regatta in Ireland until Covid cancelled it. We have participated in three Australian Women's Keel Boat regattas in Melbourne's winter. This regatta, like yours, kindly lends boat to visiting teams. We have been honoured to be loaned a skipper's pride and joy and always take great care of the boats trusted to us.

We are an experienced and well-oiled team who enjoy racing and cruising. Between us we have crewed on various boats from very small to 40 feet.

We are very excited about the possibility of adding WOWW to our collective achievements.

WOWW has enormous benefits for the club. It provides women with an opportunity to experience yacht racing, promotes our club and provides some much-needed revenue for the club. This year's Ladies Twilight Series has 10 boats entered, a big increase from the 3 or 4 that competed previously. The number of crew participating on boats has also increased. Our club captain spends many hours pumping up racing buoys that are well-past their use-by date. It is the intention of the committee to purchase 2 replacement buoys.

Check out the WOWW page on our website for more information, including the programme for the three days and the Notice of Race with details of eligibility & entry, permitted female/male crew make-up and much more.

Diana Bassett

Vice Commodore

WOWW Event Director

Sports Equipment Drive

We have been approached by Yachting NZ about supporting the collection of used sports gear. It was an initiative suggested by Sam Bacon, a young sailor in the NZL Sailing Team. Please watch your inbox later this week for an email with more information about this initiative.

Sailing Committee Corner

Wednesday Evening Summer Series - Two more Twilight Series Races prior Christmas.

Great Ladies fleet this year with 10 entries for the Taylor & Co Ladies fortnightly Twilight Series. Spring weather has provided some challenges ranging from gales force conditions which caused the cancellation of Race 2 , then the wind frustrating fading midway through Race 3 resulting in a number of boats being 'timed out'. Next Race is Wednesday 6th Dec and hopefully there will be good conditions.

In contrast the Four Square Mixed Twilight Series has had very 'sailable' weather for every race to date which resulted in 4 different winners within the fleet of 14 boats. Their next race is Wednesday 13th Dec.

Summer Holidays

The holiday cruising season is almost here remember to check all that safety equipment that does not get used from one year to another!

Yachting NZ is very focussed on keeping safe in the sun their article is quoted below.

"Melanoma New Zealand's family of supporters continues to grow, with Yachting New Zealand, Burnsco and Karma Drinks recently coming on board to back our cause and help raise awareness about melanoma in New Zealand.

Yachting New Zealand has worked alongside us over the last few years, supporting our annual Get Spotted campaign and fundraising on our behalf, and this year, we formalised our partnership by becoming the official charity for Yachting New Zealand.

"We are a high-risk group as we typically spend more time exposed to the sun when we're out on the water," said Yachting New Zealand Chief Executive David Abercrombie

"We look forward to helping Melanoma New Zealand deliver their important messages about being sun smart and checking your skin regularly."

Safe sailing out there, plenty of sunscreen and have a great summer!


Sailing Committee



Fingers crossed for the summer that all the weather gurus are predicting s/w winds and warm temperatures .As most of you will have read that this year's coastal classic had a number of close calls with crew members overboard and one fatality. What stands out from these incidents is that wearing life jackets at all times is sound seamanship , and the use of main boom preventers when running down wind are essential to stop unexpected jibes .

Finally, don't forget when having visitor's onboard do a full briefing on the safety equipment and its use, even how to start and stop the engine in an emergency .

Have a fantastic summer see you in the BOI and further north over January /February.

Grahame & Lynne Toronui

Clubhouse News

In early November an unfortunate motoring accident brought down the club flagpole that necessitated it being removed and repaired. Huge thanks to Grahame Brown whose persistence had it returned after a month and with the assistance of GHM and GH Riggers, Grahame & Lynne got it reinstalled and repainted.

Social Scene Successes

It has been our pleasure to welcome members to the variety of social activities that have happened recently, and there have been some real winners too.

Our October SEASON OPENING DINNER combined with a visit by Ponsonby CC & Richmond YC visiting sailors was a great success thanks in part to the sumptuous buffet served up by Lisa & her team in the kitchen. There was a real buzz in anticipation of a summer of sun and fun on and off the water.

Our Spring BOAT BITS & CAR BOOT SALE was well patronised with 20+ vehicles and lots of tables on the deck. Thanks to all those who donated items for the well-stocked club stall, to all the members who cooked on the BBQ, served coffee, patrolled the parking area and all the other jobs that went to make this a financially successful day for the club. We made $1,200 for the club and raised another $1,000 for the Pink Ribbon Appeal.

The club was full to overflowing again when the very talented MUSICIANS & SINGERS FROM WHANGAPARAOA COLLEGE put on a delightful evening of entertainment. The programme included the junior choir, concert band, junior rock band, big band, solo concert pianist, vocalists, a steel pan group and senior rock band 'The People' who perform at a number of local venues although still only in Year 11. A huge thanks go to staff members Sonya & Lisiate who pulled the whole performance together.

You may have noticed a new face behind the bar as Adam prepares to take over responsibility for this area of the facilities. If you would like to help behind the bar once a month or more then please do contact Adam on 021 846 79

Members with drinks & nibbles in hand visited host boats in the marina for the BOAT HOP providing an opportunity to meet new people and look over other's boats.

Another popular event was the FUN GOLF AFTERNOON with thanks to Tom & Beryl who arranged the event. All our keen golfers participated with Team Patrick Rohloff the winners on the day.

The Social Committee aim to provide a range of activities throughout the year and if you have any ideas of activities that we could include then please do contact one of the social committee

OWNERS OF WOODEN BOATS COME FORTH! That is the message from the organisers of the inaugural Auckland Wooden Boat Festival, a new event honouring Auckland's maritime heritage

Find out more at:

Mystery Anchorage answer at end of newsletter

Egor Leonenko - World famous from Gulf Harbour

Anyone who's tried their hand at race management knows only too well the weight of responsibility and number of tasks required to start a yacht race; looking at watches, pressing buttons, speaking on the VHF and raising flags all need to be done within milliseconds of each other. A task witnessed many times by our very own Egor who recognised the need to simplify the whole start procedure with the aid of technology.

Through his own volition Egor has developed several race management automation tools including the Voice Start Timer and Beat Length Calculator applications; apps that have improved the accuracy of race management and have replaced pages of tables and graphs. These apps have since been translated into French, Dutch, Hungarian, Chinese, Russian and are being used around the world.

Few have contributed more to simplifying racing in this country than Egor Leonenko and last week, Egor's work was recognised with an Excellence Award from Yachting New Zealand. Egor's dedication has reduced the number of people required on start vessels, enables quick decisions to be made easily when under time pressure, and helped minimise human error - ensuring almost anyone can now run good yacht races.....well, almost anyone... ! Egor, we're so proud of you and for your mahi.

Sarah Morgan

PS. We are very lucky to have Egor as an active member of the club and we greatly appreciate all of the work he does, both for the sailing committee and on our website.

Gill Waite


Number 1 Part 1 Questions

1...What scale would you expect a harbour chart to be printed in?

2...What projection are New Zealand charts printed in?

3...When is it that a WGS 84 GPS position cannot be directly transferred to a paper chart?

4...Draw the symbol for a rock awash at Chart Datum.

5...What is a Raster chart?

6...What does 6 in brackets mean when located next to the name of a small islet? i.e. (6) .

7...How is an 'occlusion' formed?

8...At what temperature does water vapour turn into water droplets?

9...Name the cloud that indicates a very unstable air mass.

10...Name the cloud that indicates a stable air mass.


1Usually 1:10,000 or less.

2The Mercator Projection

3When the paper chart has not been surveyed using the WGS84 datum (i.e. WGS76)

4... A rock awash at Chart datum

5An electronic navigational chart (ENC) that is a direct copy of a paper chart.

6Height of the highest part of the islet above MHWS (i.e. 6m)

7There are two types of occlusion, warm and cold, and they are generally formed around a low pressure system. There are basically two air masses, one overtaking the other:

#...In a warm occlusion, a warm air (frontal) mass is overtaking a colder air mass, but being warmer (and lighter), will ride up over the colder air.

#... In a cold occlusion, the air mass overtaking the warm front is cooler (and heavier) than the air mass ahead of the warm front, and pushes itself underneath the warm air mass.

8 It is the air temperature at which the water vapour in the air (felt as humidity) turns to water droplets as in fog, mist, clouds. Also called its saturation point.

9Towering cumulus, a large vertical cloud mass with strong vertical uplifts and downdrafts causing strong squally (wind and rain) weather.

10Stratiform or stratus clouds extend a long, low, grey layer with an almost uniform base which indicate that the surrounding air mass is stable.

Mike Pignéguy

Answer to Mystery Anchorage

Bowling Alley Bay, Great Barrier Island with Zarapito at anchor. Unfortunately this bay is now out of bounds due to Caulerpa seaweed being present.


Mike Pigneguy,

Last updated 09:19 on 20 February 2024

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