Oz Sky Show - For Those of You Contemplating

Oz Sky Show - For Those of You Contemplating

For those of you contemplating the Oz sky show and doing the boating thing, especially for the first time, the following is our experience (other’s might have had it different) and may be of some insight:

We took possession of our boat in Dec 2005 and did the Oz Day Sky Show in January of 2006.

We arrived there about 10:30am to get a spot, dropped the pick and anchored just west of the Narrows, on the south side.

At that stage there was one boat (in the pic series) and a small barge affair they had.

Progressively, as we watch the jet over head pass, barrelling down the river at low attitude, (pretty cool!), sky divers and some aeronautical displays, more and more boats arrived.

By the time proceedings got under way, there were THOUSANDS, yes thousands of boats, or in some cases, bloody ships! Some of those would have gone 60' plus EASILY and had obviously made there way down from Hillary’s etc.

For those wondering about where to anchor, there are (or were) designated areas on both sides of the river - on both sides of the narrows - designated by small buoys (markers) . With a VERY strictly enforced no go zone inside those markers. (Where the barges were)

If you stopped there or drifted (I'll come back to that) they (Water Police and Marine and Harbour vessels (would be DPI now) would be on to you in seconds!

I assume around the Causeway would be the same.

It was pretty tightly run.

If you get there early - to get a good spot - be prepared for a very long day.

I'm glad we did once for the experience, but personally, I wouldn't do it again JMHO.

Some observations:


A) ...you want a prime spot - get there early.

B) ...you do - take something to occupy yourself.

C) ...you are the skipper - don’t 'drink and drive' - they checked a lot of boats when we were underway.

D) ...you plan to drink - plan to stay overnight - many boats did.

E) ...you plan to drop the pick near the Narrows - make sure the scope of your rope/chain and flukes of your sand anchor are up to it. With a strong wind and very silty bottom, a lot of boats had difficulty holding position. This meant you either got pinged for drifting into the no go - or had the embarrassment/difficulty of pulling the pick and relocating. That's difficult - see F.

F) ...again on a strong wind and silty bottom, I deployed a 7:1 scope and took double anchor chain and the next size up in a Danforth anchor. When it came to pulling the pick to head back, my anchor and line ended up running under one boat to under a second. A bit tricky, so you need to have you whits about you.

G) ....a couple of fenders come in handy (see F).

H) REMEMBER the Nocturnal speed rules on the Swan. Many boats (especially willy wonkers in fly bridge jobs ignored it) - PING!!! Once again.

I) We HAD planned on sitting tight at the end of the show, but found that everyone else did that too. So we pulled and went straight away. It's a dogs breaky if you leave it to late. Especially when the flotilla content upstream - merges with the downstream flotila.

J) You could get some idiots - two p*ssed girls and a guy decided to swim next to our boat then have a 'girlfriends - girlfriend with the boyfriend' domestic. A very loud polite and unambiguous F*** Off ended that.

K) ….you launch from a public ramp, remember that they’ll be VERY busy when you return. We were fortunate enough to be a member of a yacht club at the time with a private ramp.

Overall? It's certainly worth doing once - apart from the show and day time events, the number and variety of boats is an experience in itself.


Soon to be de "dreamweaver" ed!

stacer414's picture

Posts: 17

Date Joined: 07/10/10

cheers for the info mate,

Fri, 2010-10-29 19:01

cheers for the info mate, had contemplated it but dont think im experienced enough to navigate that mess!

scotto's picture

Posts: 2396

Date Joined: 21/04/08


Sat, 2010-10-30 07:31

this post is nearly 3 years old.


let it go man, let it go.