Torrens Island – The Creeks

Torrens Island - The Creeks… 


Torrens Island

As the map notes suggest, a circumnavigation makes a good day trip. You want a reasonably high tide to use The Cutting (once maintained to allow passage of explosives vessels) or high tide to pass around Point Grey. For lunch breaks, there is a stretch of sandy beach north of the Quarantine Station, and two small beaches are on the eastern side, as noted on the reverse of the map.

The Quarantine Station and power station are closed to the public, and you should not land near them except in emergency. If you do have trouble along this stretch of water there is easier access if you land on the Lefevre Peninsula side

(Pic is of the Middle Ground Inner beacon. Fluffy clouds and lack of waves show a good day)









French Tom Creek

Named for a fisherman of long ago, this creek leads to the interior of the island. At its upstream end there is a fork. The left branch almost turns back on itself and the right branch also turns left and disappears into mangroves
The creek on the northern side at 738 478 is navigable for a short distance


Three creeks off Angas Inlet

The western and middle creeks off Angas Inlet are easily accessible and are often paddled. The entrance to the eastern creek is behind a sandbar directly opposite beacon 30R. The entrance is shallow and narrow, but the creek widens into a pool. Progress from there is blocked
At low tide the remains of a launch are exposed near the westernmost creek entrance



Other creeks

Several other creeks exist on the island, one having an entrance near the Middle Ground Inner beacon. Like many other creeks in Barker Inlet, it is blocked by mangroves and is not navigable


Mutton Cove

This area has been closed off for many years, but there are plans to breach the embankment, making the creek navigable again and allowing water access to the two wrecks within.

Ships' Graveyard

Wrecks are all shown on the map, with an inset for the main area in North Arm. For details of the ships, see the ShipsÕ Graveyards Web site. The pic is of the remains of the Glaucus, and everybody paddles through where the propeller once was

When paddling in the Katarapko region, protective footwear such as sneakers, sandals or wetsuit shoes should be worn for protection from sharp sticks and stones, broken glass and bites. Sun glasses are recommended as protection from sunglare and head high vegetation.
River Red Gums are prone to dropping limbs without warning and it is therefore wise not to camp beneath them. The level of the water throughout the system can vary. Thus one must be aware that banks may be slippery, submerged logs may not be apparent, and the depth of water may vary greatly. In some of the creeks there may be a significant current, which means that paddlers need to be able to steer and control their boat confidently This is particularly relevant when paddling with the current as paddlers can be pushed into fallen trees or other obstacles across the creek, resulting in a capsize and a struggle to get to safety. (Campsite 28 shown at right).
If the group decides that they want to pass through the lock , then they will need to observe the proper precautions. On approach to the lock, signal to the lockmaster to make him/her aware that you wish to use the lock. This initial signal should be done 400-600 metres away from the lock. The signal can be done by either sounding three long blasts of 4-6 seconds on a whistle or horn, or waving a flag to attract the lockmasterÕs attention, or alternatively, by flashing a light.

When it is safe to proceed, the lockmaster will sigal with a green flag or a fixed or flashing green light. Prior to this signal do not approach any closer than 150 metres. When it is safe to proceed, enter the lock and wait for the water level to equalise. Once inside the lock remain at the end of the lock where there is no water activity. The lockmaster will advise you of this. Do not tie on to anything in the lock, and follow the instructions of the lockmaster. He or she will signal when it is safe to exit the lock.

When planning to use the lock, remember that the lock is only open at certain times of the day, and that it will take up to 30 minutes to pass through the lock. It is advisable to book ahead of departure to avoid delays. It is possible to portage (carry around) Lock 4 rather than passing through, however thsi will entail a long walk on a narrow track with both the boat and the gear!