Saturday, June 4, 2011

June 6 2011 from Tahanea

Memorial Day - May 30 2011.
Had an early morning walk to the boulangerie (bakery) for bread. Got caught in the rain, so sheltered in the boulangerie for a while and explained to the bakery lady and her friend about Memorial day. We planned a barbeque with Moondance and invited Calou, Callopyge and Charade. It ended up being more of an appetizer and dessert thing on the dock, but was very nice. So, we had added a little bit of US to our stay in Makemo.

May 31, 2011
Spent a leisurely day getting the boat ready for the overnight crossing to Tahanea. It was nice to have all day to prepare, even though it meant an overnight watch schedule. We untied Moondance from the dock about 1615, and Lor and Carol helped us untie right after that. We all blew away from the dock nicely and headed out through the pass. It was not as exciting as coming in, I guess we knew what to expect for one, and it is easier going out into open water. Calou passed us as we were putting up our sails, and we all sailed off into the sunset (so to speak). To get to Tahanea we had to go westish along Makemo (starboard tack downwind) then jibe to the southwest. We left at night because you have to enter and exit passes at slack tides, and entering a new place needs to be done in the daylight, preferably with the sun high in the sky. The daytime slack here at Tahanea was at 0940, and the closest slack at Makemo was at 5 pm. Hence an overnight crossing. Was not too bad, a little rolly, but we should be used to that be now. We were in sight of Tahanea around 0730, just in time for a morning squall. We got all the sails down and motored into the wind until it blew and rained itself out. The pass was pretty benign, all made it through without incident, we anchored and were pretty much settled by 1030.

June 1st
It is beautiful here. Totally deserted tropical island beautiful. The atoll is narrow, so you can easily see the open ocean from here inside the lagoon. The water in the lagoon is crystal clear shades of dark blue, sky blue, turquoise and green. Pictures can't really do it justice. As much as we enjoy being at the dock, we are loving this anchorage. There is a coral head about 50 yards behind us that the boys snorkeled on. They said it is really good.
After naps, we went exploring with Doug and Carla. We found a little sandy spot (beaches are more rough coral than sand) to have some wine and snacks. As the sun was setting we scattered some of Steve Hall's ashes. He would have loved it here, it is a fitting place for part of him to rest. Rest in peace good friend.

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