Sunrise: Chasing the dream

Life filled with adventure, both actual and spiritual.

22 December 2016 | Avera Bay, Huahine, French Polynesia
20 December 2016 | Huahine French Polynesia
18 December 2016 | Parea, Huahine, French Polynesia
13 December 2016 | Apooiti Raiatea
13 December 2016 | Marina Apooiti, Raiatea, French Polynesia
10 December 2016 | Raiatea Lagoon
10 December 2016 | Raiatea Lagoon
05 December 2016 | Over the Iles Sous Le Vent
05 December 2016 | Over the Pacific Ocean
04 November 2016 | Tahaa, French POlynesia
03 November 2016 | Raiatea Lagoon, French Polynesia
02 November 2016 | Apooiti, Raiatea, French Polynesia
02 November 2016 | Uturoa, Raiatea, French Polynesia
02 November 2016
02 November 2016 | Uturoa, Raiatea French Polynesia
30 October 2016 | Pass at the NE corner of Raiatea, French Polynesia.
18 October 2016 | Apooiti, Raiatea, French Polynesia
17 October 2016 | SW corner of Tahaa
15 October 2016 | SW corner of Tahaa
06 October 2016 | Uturoa, Raiatea, French Polynesia

Swinging around

22 December 2016 | Avera Bay, Huahine, French Polynesia
We have spent a lot of time in the water these past few days... Isobel has spent a bunch of time over it!

What do you do during a Tropical Downpour?

20 December 2016 | Huahine French Polynesia
Somehow my connection to Facebook disconnected. Look at Blog for more photos and writings...

It is the rainy season and it is 83 to 85 during the day... so it is quite fun to play in the rain!

A slow sail... vacation!

18 December 2016 | Parea, Huahine, French Polynesia
We left with a forecast of light wind from the North and seas of about 1 meter. And that was accurate... unfortunately the wind would swing to the west. 8 knots on the beam is OK sailing, which 8 knots on the quarter is not quite enough. Although pretty benign conditions.... it was still hot, and rolly and not much breeze... so there were some who didn't feel so great. Not having been on a moving boat for a month contributed also.

To make her feel better, we put her at the helm. No, this is not punishment, it actually works. She has to concentrate, mostly on a point on the horizon... and the combination of concentrating on looking forward and at the horizon makes all the difference!

Seven hours after cast off the dock lines we were at anchor in the spectacular SW corner of Huahine. Wow, how quickly we had forgotten how great it is to be in a peaceful spot with only one other boat in the bay... and they are friends of ours!

Tropic birds and two swims by lunch time. I guess that means we are on vacation! It is very peaceful with a little hotel on shore.

As a side note, this seems to be the week to visit French Polynesia. All the hotels and resorts seem empty as people prepare for the holidays.

The girl next door

13 December 2016 | Apooiti Raiatea
We went on a little excursion with another family on the dock to the Motu at Miri Miri. Poema and Isobel are great friends. The parents moved here from Southwestern France 12 years ago and the bought the boat a few years ago as a place to live. They are learning to sail bit by bit. Mom is a Surgical Nurse at the Hospital in Uturoa and Pa is a Physical Therapist.

The two girls go to the same school as Isobel. It has been quite fun for Isobel as the three of them spend a lot of time playing games and building forts and swimming. And, for the parents it is fun to share some of the school pickups and drop offs well as meals etc…

Marinas and the Rainy Season

13 December 2016 | Marina Apooiti, Raiatea, French Polynesia
Marina Apooiti. The most beautiful marina in the world. We really think so. This is the view from the edge of the Quai, 20 feet from our cockpit. The view is the same from the cockpit, there are just some pesky palms in the way. Bathrooms are clean, water is free, it is quiet and surrounded by beauty.

The Rainy Season… well, it can rain for days at a time, yet there are also stretches of a week at a time with beautiful weather. The sun is incredibly intense now as we approach the Winter Solstice, when the sun is as far south as it goes (about 23 degrees south). We are at almost 17 degrees south, so the sun is effectively directly overhead. Anything left in the sun becomes hot or melts. Going out in the middle of the day is deadly unless you have on sun screen, hat, etc. Mostly, our favorite times of the day are morning and evening.

Dinghy Engines

10 December 2016 | Raiatea Lagoon
We use a Honda 8 HP, Four Stroke. It is quiet and doesn’t use much fuel. It allows us to plane in our AB Aluminum 9.5’ Dinghy. The engine is heavier than our dinghy! If I were to do it again, I would have investigated the weight vs power of the different Four Stroke engine available. When we bought this one, on very short notice in Panama, I bought it because it was a known name. As it turns out, they use the same block and housing on the 8HP, 10HP, 15HP and 20HP! So I ended up with all the weight of the 20 HP with the power of an 8. At the time, Yamaha was making an 8 HP that was 20 pound lighter… ah well… next time.

In the photo is the little pass through the reef we cut through on our way to town. Bora Bora is in the distance, and Tahaa is to the right.

A ride to town

10 December 2016 | Raiatea Lagoon
During the “rainy season” the Iles Sous Le Vent (Leeward Islands) are often in a little zone (I believe it is part of the South Pacific Convergence Zone… ) the normal trade winds are not there. The wind is often light from various directions.

For us, it allows us to take the dinghy to town. This is much more fun and very scenic. With Isobel in school, it seems like we are on vacation (No homeschooling, no projects, and a few hours of quiet.) So, Lara and I go to town, sometimes just for the ride, sometimes because we are shopping.

The route is through the lagoon out around the airport, past the Haeva tent, past the other Marina and into the little port of Uturoa.

Overview of Huahine and Cyclone prep

05 December 2016 | Over the Iles Sous Le Vent
Of course, because we were a day late, we had lost our seats on Air Tahiti to Raiatea at 7:30. The folks at AIr Tahiti are so nice though. They suggested that we "air freight" our bags to Raiatea. This way we could be on standby and leave at a moments notice. The girls were put on the 8:30 flight, and I followed on the 12:30 flight.

This photo is of the SW corner of Huahine. A little place called Parea. We have been hearing about this place since we arrived in French Polynesia. This was our intended place to spend Christmas. Flying over on my Air Tahiti gave me a great preview of the place.

First, we had to recover from the trip, provision the boat, put all the stuff back on the boat we had taken off when we left. Since we were leaving during the official Cyclone Season, we had to strip the sails and all canvas on deck (shades, weather cloths, etc) and remove anything that might blow away in 150 knots of wind. This was a little painful this year as it is La Nina and the probability of a storm is very low. Also, we were leaving in November-December and the real high probability season is February-March. Ah well, better safe than sorry.

We had found used tires to mount on the sides as additional fenders. All the fenders and tires had to be tied under the boat so they would stay down in a big wind. I added two more bow lines. These are lines that I tied to a huge chain that runs across the bottom of the harbor between immense concrete blocks. While I was diving, I also checked my neighbor's lines and retied a couple that were broken or chafed. We had four stern lines also tied to different cleats.

Our friends on Te Ara offered to adjust our lines in the event of a threat. Two key things: Move the boat away from the pier and make sure that our mast was out of line with our neighbors. If there were waves in the marina, we didn't want to bang on the quai or tangle our rigs with our neighbors.

US to Tahiti Travel

05 December 2016 | Over the Pacific Ocean

We traveled home for a few weeks. It was very nice to see family and friends. it was also nice to luxuriate in the glow of american culture and amenities.

As Isobel say, “We live in paradise.” Yet, as my friend from SV Salsa says, “Just when you think you have found paradise, you realize there is some little thing that takes to shine off. For us, French Polynesia is really wonderful… until you wan to travel to see people in the USA. Normally, the trip takes about 24 hours plus the Air Tahiti flight from Raiatea to Tahiti.

Our return flight took 60 hours!! The plane in Atlanta had a mechanical issue (no complaint from us on fixing it!)… and it did have us land in LA ah hour after the flight to Tahiti took off… There is only one flight a day… so we spent a day in LA. By the time we were on the Air Tahiti Nui flight, which departs at 10:20 pm… we were wiped out!

Haviiki Nui Va'a Final leg

04 November 2016 | Tahaa, French POlynesia
Bill, Photo Lara
This leg is 57 kilometers. They started in Patio Tahaa... we see them here after about 6 K. Officials keep us away from the fray... while the helicopters beam live footage to the rest of the world.

Many people followed the rest of the way
Vessel Name: Sunrise
Vessel Make/Model: Hallberg Rassy 38
Hailing Port: Dorset, VT
Crew: Bill, Lara and Isobel Calfee
About: We left Lake Champlain September 18th, 2009. Isobel was 7 months old
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