Storm smashes wreck, clean-up begins


    Last weekend’s wild weather hit the wreck of the Rosalie Clare with full force, breaking up the 70-foot vessel that had been driven onto the rocks at the entrance to Mātiatia Bay by the aftermath of a December cyclone.

    On Saturday and Sunday, rough seas and strong winds from the remains of Cyclone Dovi lashed the Hauraki Gulf, with a wind speed of 153kmh recorded at Aotea Great Barrier. By Sunday morning, the Rosalie Clare was in pieces, strewn the length of the bay.

    When the boat was still largely intact, owners Ari Vanderschoot and Ben Vroom had been planning to move it to Talking Tree Hill, where they envisaged it being restored as a pirate ship playground. Neither wanted to see the wooden boat go to landfill.

    Surveying the wreckage on Sunday, Ari lamented the time it was taking to bring that plan to fruition and told Gulf News: “That’s planning, it hardly ever works out the way you want.”

    On Monday, Ari began clearing debris from the coastline with help from workers at Waiheke’s The Labour Depot. 

    Ben says the clean-up will continue this week and on Thursday a large barge will arrive with a crane to retrieve the engine, mast and litter from the seafloor and take it to Auckland. He says they have put a call out for help with clearing the debris from the coastline, with help particularly needed from carpenters who can use power tools, which they have, to cut up the hull so it can be transported to the beach where it will be picked up by a digger. • Erin Johnson

    Full story in this week’s Gulf News… Out Now!!!

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