More pics from Savusavu on the page 2011 photos...got our crusing permit, clearing out today to go to Namena / Makongai tomorrow. Need to do some shopping, market etc gas bottle being filled...this is the last shot at the internet for quite a while...there won't be anything out there I'm sure !
Arriving in Savusavu met by "the launch" from Waitui marina...that's it at bottom left !
First visit this morning from the health officer...nobody died ?, no diseases ?..$172 thank you !!!
Next Immigration and customs...jolly fellows , talked about rugby with Dan while I filled in form after form..nearly finished...just one more...all very pleasant but time consuming.
Off to the hospital to pay the health fee.drop off the laundry,then into town to find some internet...had lunch at a pleasant little cafe...went to customs to sign Dan off the crew list..."you come backj at 2 o'clock...OK...we go back at 2 o'clock.."oh you have to go to immigration next door...OK...Bula at immigration...oh the immigration officer is not here ...you come back later...OK...down to the Copra shed to use the internet..can't connect ..half an hour still no good...went back to immigration..ok all done..back to the Copra shed..Gunilla has her laptop working..seems we need a specific IP address, DNS and other things just to get to the password page...and they didn't tell me that !!!
Oh well..welcome to island time !
Bula !! from Savusavu !
After a funny sort of day we arrived yesterday at Savusavu 16deg46.5S, 179deg19.8E...tied up on a mooring at 1700, 8 days and 30 minutes since we left Opua.
Daily mileages were
150, 130, 167, 165, 171, 164, 163, 170
Wind was SSE for 2 days when we rain with main only, then SE as a huge high
stalled over the Tasman sea. wind was mostly F6/7 and we made good boatspeed but
the westerly going south Fiji current really affected our speed over ground...we
followed the rhumb line and did more than 1200 miles through the water with
distance over ground 1147.
Arrived too late to clear customs and immigration
We're pooped...be nice to sleep in a bed that doesn't roll !!
Weather has been atrocious intermixed with fine sunny periods...plan was to leave on Tuesday, but o'night the wind has not yet gone SW and we received this from Bob McDavitt.
WHEN TO DEPART NZ FOR FIJI/TONGA?
Winds around Northland/ Auckland may be around 20 gust 30 knots on Monday Tuesday --- but are also likely to be 30 gust 40 knots in passing showers, so that's one reason to delay until Wednesday.
Also the Tasman Sea is filling up now with large swells, probably peaking in mid Tasman on Tuesday 17 May at around 8 metres!
Heavy swells are likely as far north as New Caledonia and Fiji from Wed 18 May to Friday 20 May.
Departing from Northland on Wednesday/Thursday seems to be the best - avoids the possible squally showers on Monday Tuesday and, if your trip is into part of the north Tasman Sea, these departure days mostly avoid the big swells.
Those big swells do not have much impact on a trip to Tonga, but we are expecting some strong winds and heavy swells around Minerva on Thu/Fri 19/20 May due to a brief trough/low forming near Southern Tonga
Departing from Friday 20 May onwards puts you in the easterly winds on the northern side of H2.
These winds may be enhanced into a squash zone near 20S next week, but at this stage things are looking OK.
SO, for us it looks like we wait until Wednesday now ........
Finally arrived in the Bay of Islands after 10 hours motoring into 10-12 knot northerly breeze and a 2 m NE swell...it was not very pleasant , until we came through the Albert Channel at 1630.
One positive is that we ran the watermaker for just over 3 hours today and now our water tanks are full !!
Solar panels were putting in a bit of current in the o'cast conditions and interesting that when the engine alternator had done its thing and got to float stage, the charge light would come on every time the sun shone ! Clearly the alternator is putting out minimum current to keep the float voltage at 13.5 and when the current from the solar panels runs in, even taking the field current completely off the alternator isn't enough to keep the alternator running the float...ergo the charge light comes on.....and conversely it goes off when the clouds come...Physics in action !!! ...Mybe the float voltages on the solar reg and the alternator reg are not the same ?...I need to check that !
Anchored for the night in Orokawa Bay 35 15.30'S, 174 12.05'E very calm...in front of a large blue ketch KAORI which for some reason is showing red masthead lights on both masts ... anyone know why they would be doing that ??
Tomorrow's f'cast is not pleasant..we will maybe stay here or tiki tour around the bay, do some fishing...then on Saturday go down to Opua to pick up Dan and Helen and go for a sail.....
Here we are just over halfway from Kawau Is to Tutukaka, breeze is 15knots on the beam (ENE) and we're doing 6.5 knots in a moderate sea. Later the breeze got up to 18-20, we took a few turns in on the genoa and we're still doing 7.4 knots. Finally we reached Tutukaka at 1630 having done 58 miles in 9 hours, not bad considering we were motoring a t 5 knots for the first hour !
The wind howled all night and this morning the radio forecast is for 25-30 this morning and 30-40 this afternoon with rain !..We're staying put !!
Already at 1000 inside the harbour we have wind in the high 20s. (photo doesn't capture it, but it's ugly !)
Forecast for tomorrow is variable with showers and then blowy again on Friday, so tomorrow sounds like the go even if we have to motor all the way.
Saling at last...well motorsailing anyway !
Gunilla and I left Gulf harbour this morning and motor sailed to Kawau Island this eevening we're anchored in Lidgards Bay, Bon Accord harbour.
Tomorrow will be an early start probably motor sailing again, heading for Tutukaka. wednesday the breeze shoul fill in and take us to the Bay of islands...close hauled albeit.
Then to pick up crewmember Dan and the cryo - packed meat.
The ICA boats all left over the past weekend and on the SSB we hear they have been motoring into a 2m swell...blow that ! Current forecast shows a depression arriving towards the end of the week followed byu a strong SW flow ..THATS what we want, give us a kick start to 25S when we should start to see the SE trades kick in
The new Garhauer traveller finally installed and the cockpit all cleaned ! The torlon ball bearings in the traveller and blocks make everything run very smoothly...this will be a major improvement over what we had before.
The observsant among you may have noticed that the sun is shining !!..The wiring of the solar panels is all tidied up and they were producing 11.5 Amps today !
The sun maybe shining but its pretty chilly....
Yesterday I produced a bucket load of mushroom rissotto packed into individual meal containers, today even more spaghetti bolognaise, tomorrow I will produce 9 containers of chicken with stirfry vegetables and rice, for the passage to Fiji.
Weather is still coming from the north and the wind is quite fierce. Forecast is for it to die down on omnday sop our plan is to quit the marina on Monday, fill up with diesel and head up to Kawau Island then follow the usual route north to the Bay of islands, where we pick up Dan, our 3rd crew member for the trip.
The new traveller ready to be bolted down...this little job has taken forever...but it will be worth it in the end !
2 x 130W solar panels up where the bimini used to be...they can produce up to 10 Amps each, so plenty to run the watermaker and the fridge while we are underway..... and also while anchored, without having to run the engine everyday.
The controller is very clever and ensures that maximum powewr is extracted all the time and it incoporates a 3 stage charger to ensure the batteries are properly charged.
Collected crew Gunilla Peterson from the airport today... will do provisioning tomorrow now that we have the refrigeration all working....so thats it for today ... doesn't sound like much ...but it was !