We made it to Huahine no problem. Mostly a motor sail, but did get enough wind to add a knot to our speed. Was a whole different arrival than our first time. No wind and rain, just bright blue sunny skies. We think that the high winds and waves/swell that we saw in BoraBora took out one of the channel markers on the north side of the channel in Fare. We had no problems with the entrance, but it is kind of weird knowing that there was a mark, and not being able to find it. The cruise ship Paul Gaugain was moored in the entrance to the bay just south of Fare. We were pretty sure that the big yellow thing our there was a mooring – and sure enough. Very unusual to see a ship that size on a mooring. That evening we all went in for happy hour and dinner at the roulettes.
Wednesday morning we had dolphins in the anchorage – way cool. Dennis jumped in with his mask and snorkel, but there was too much current for him to be able to get close to them. They did sense him in the water though, so gave me quite the show jumping and spy hopping to check him out. Later that morning we did some provisioning, and then went for a snorkel. The snorkel spot we chose had a permanently parked boat there. When we got in the water, we were inundated by all kinds of fish. It was obvious that the fish were regularly fed. Was cool to see all the fish, but it was close to feeding time and the sharks were hungry too. We hadn't been there long when the tour boat came and we were asked to leave. We moved about 30 yards away – and big surprise, no fish. Oh well, I got some great pictures at the first place. We pretty much drifted with the current back to our boat. We finalized plans with Doug and Carla to leave for Bourayne Bay the next day and had a quiet evening on the boat.
Thursday morning we took the big boat into the dock in Fare. The plan was to get some laundry water and take down the big jib. We will be working more to windward now, so will not need such a big headsail. Fortunately it was quiet windwise and Doug and Carla were on the dock to catch lines. The jib came down without a hitch, I got water in the buckets for laundry and scored some zucchini and fresh sliced loaf bread. All that accomplished, we left the dock and headed to Bourayne Bay about 5 miles south of Fare.
Bourayne Bay according to the guide book was supposed to remind us of a Scottish loch. We decided that was a bit of a stretch, but it was definitely pretty and not crowded. Probably because it is a deep anchorage. It felt weird to go from anchoring in 17 feet to anchoring in 80 feet. The rest of the day was pretty quiet.
Friday we were going to go on a dinghy ride to the east side of the island but it was way too windy, so we decided to move to Avea Bay and do the dinghy ride on the way back. Avea bay is very pretty. Saturday we dinghied with Doug and Carla south to the town of Parea. On the way there we stopped to watch the surfers at the pass, it looked doable, so we decided to come back the next day to try it out. We then explored the Marae, which is a sacred pile of rocks and according to a woman we met later one of the few with only original rocks. The town of Parea wasn't much, but the did have a shop where Carla bought a hand painted pareo. It is really beautiful and the couple who owned the shop (Frank and Miri) were very nice. She explained the meaning behind the different symbols/figures and demonstrated different ways to tie it. Afterwards, Frank gave us a ride to the magazine. As we were leaving they told us that they were giving a pareo show at the hotel near where we were anchored that night and invited us to come. Which we did. We probably had a little too much fun, but we survived.
Sunday was pretty quiet, I cleaned the boat and Josh and Dennis went and tried the surf spot. It turned out to be pretty scary with lots of outgoing current and breaking on the reef. I was glad I didn't go. That night we had Doug and Carla and Frank and Miri over for drinks after dinner. It was quite educational listening to Miri talk about her family and being raised on Huahine. Frank is from France (Brittany he likes to say), but has been in Polynesia for 20+ years.
Monday 9/12 - Left Avea bay for Bourayne Bay and our dinghy ride. The plan was to leave Huahine for Tahiti on Tuesady afternoon (good weather window). Doug and Carla decided to have a quiet day on the boat so stayed in Avea. We would meet the next morning on the way to Tahiti. After we anchored, we set out for the east side of the island in search of the sacred blue eyed eel. It was quite a long ride, but Josh did a great job of keeping us dry. As we approached the bay with the eels, we saw two "houses" out in the middle of the water. On closer inspection they turned out to be built out on reefs. We stopped at one that turned out to be a pearl farm. We snacked and listened to the talk about their farm ( not that different than on Tahaa). Afterwards we went to the small town of Faie and the eels. The eels do have murky blue eyes - almost like they would be blind. There was no information there about them - just a sign saying they were the sacred eels. Kind of underwhelming, definitely a tourist thing. So, we bought snacks and headed back to the dinghy. On the way back to the boat the dinghy engine acted up again. Fortunately we were close to the pearl farm, so we limped there and tied up to their dock while we cleaned out the filter in the carburator. What a pain. At least we had the proper tools with us and practice makes perfect. This was the first time Josh had been with us when it died, so Dennis took the opportunity to show him how to fix it. After that we got back to the boat with no problem. The wind was nonexistent, so we put the yankee jib up for the crossing to Tahiti.
Tuesday morning we finished securing the boat and headed to Fare. Josh and I took the dinghy to get fuel for it in town, the plan being that Dennis would go slow in the big boat and we would meet hime back at the pass. Sadly the dinghy motor acted up again. Josh and I were able to fix it, but by then Dennis had caught up to us. Deciding that fuel wasn't in our karma, we headed on out the pass to Tahiti.
The crossing was uneventful and we made the anchorage by marina Taina and were anchored before noon. We had breakfast, rested a little then headed in for happy hour then dinner at our favorite chinese restaurant. YUM!!
Tuesday 9/20. Since then we have been pretty busy provisioning and doing projects. We have done a major Carrefour run (groceries), 6 loads of laundry, a cost and co run (cereal), internet time at the Pink Coconut, dinghy engine work, generator muffler repair and the list goes on. We are hoping for a good weather window to be out of here soon. We haven't finalized a plan, but that is on the list for today......