Ashmore Reef

We left Darwin on the morning of August 6th, finally getting underway for our long crossing of the Indian Ocean. We had a couple of very nice days of sailing that put us very near to Ashmore Reef, the last outpost of Australia on the continental shelf. For the last six months we’ve never sailed in water deeper than 50 meters, the continental shelf around Australia is just huge. But it all ends at Ashmore – on the east side the water gradually deepens from that 50 meter range to about 100 meters. On the west side it drops off within a couple of miles to 2000 meters. Since the weather was nice we decided to stop for a day. Australia maintains a 24/7 presence at the reef, seems the World Court says that if they’re not there then the Indonesians can make a claim. And there’s apparently a fair amount of oil in the surrounding Timor Sea. So, when

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