There are more than 100 public bareboat moorings scattered throughout the
Whitsunday Islands. They are maintained by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park
Authority using the funds from the marine park fees collected.
Public moorings are free to use and are in most cases located in areas of live
coral. Their purpose is to prevent anchor damage to the coral.
Some island resorts maintain their own moorings; there is a fee for their use.
Whitsunday Escape maintains 10 moorings outside the charter base at Abell
Point Marina, they are free of charge for Whitsunday Escape customers.
Picking Up a Mooring
Approach the mooring against the wind or tide or in the same direction as other boats are facing, as per your anchoring procedure.
Using the boat hook provided, pick up the smaller buoy (or floating rope) and raise it over the bow roller (in some cases you may need to first move the anchor). Continue pulling in the mooring line attached, until you reach the chain or thick rope. Attach the chain/thick rope to the bollard on the front deck.
The boat hook is designed to only lift the weight of the pick up rope, do not use the boat hook to hold or pull the boat towards the mooring ball.
When dropping a mooring always check the position of the mooring ball and pick up line as it may get wrapped around props or rudders. The best practice is to have a crew member pointing to the mooring ball until the vessel is well clear.
Moorings are the major cause of rope/propeller wraps and may cause major damage always take extreme care manoeuvring around moorings and appoint a crew member on the bow to communicate its whereabouts.
Public moorings are provided at special locations and in general their use is subject to “first in best served”. You may not remain longer than 2 hours between 7 am and 2 pm.
You may remain overnight if the mooring is picked up after 2pm, you will need to depart your mooring no later than 9 am the following day.
Vessels must not ‘raft up’ – one vessel only on the mooring. There are specific
restrictions on size of vessel and wind strengths on some moorings. The
location, description and limits that apply to public moorings are covered in the
Marine Parks brochure in the Cruising Notes, in the ‘100 Magic Miles’ guidebook
and on the mooring tag itself, and these will also be discussed during your