Daniel's Bay Nuku Hiva
11 June 2013 | Marquesas, French Polynesia
We sailed into Daniel's Bay, the cliffs were dramatic and beautiful, very green and lush. To get into the bay you sail around a rock point and the bay opens up, as soon as we came in I recognized the bay as one I had seen on the back cover or a sailing magazine. The picture had been taken from the top of one of the hills and in it the bay looks like a lake with no opening to the sea. It is all very dramatic. The picture in the magazine had only on boat in the anchorage, we were about 15. It was great we knew almost all of the boats and met the ones we didn't.
From Daniel's Bay we organized a big group hike, almost all the boats in the anchorage, to the 3rd tallest waterfall in the world. The hike was fantastic. All the kids ran ahead and had a real adventure of it. Zack was the youngest of the group, except for one other 7 year old who seemed very young, and stayed with his mother, he is very much able to hold his own with the older kids. The group ages from Zack,7, to Nikolai,15, and every age in between. I am not even sure that Zack realizes he is the youngest. The hike was really moderate in grade, the path lined with tropical flowers and fruit trees. There are so many fruit trees here that the fruit is just lying on the ground rotting. The path cut across a river several times. The first few times we took off our hiking shoes and waded across, keeping our shoes dry. This worked for a while until I slipped and got one shoe wet, then the other shoe got wet, so after that I just tramped thru with my shoes on. The hike was 2 1/2 hours each way and the river crossings were spaced just far enough apart for your shoes to dry out before crossing again. At the waterfall we all had a great pot luck lunch, sitting on rocks in a lovely field surrounded by high peaks. Almost everyone took a short swim over to the waterfall itself in the ice cold water. David and Zack went, I decided to skip, bad choice I should have gone. These are once in a lifetime opportunities and I shouldn't let little things like freezing, dirty water and a lack of clothes to change into influence my decisions. Next time, I go. When we got back to the beach the kids decided to stay and play, while the adults went back to Sueno and chilled out to Passion fruit rum cocktails, with ice!! thanks to Full Monty. The beach is really nice and Zack was keen to show us the baby Blacktip sharks swimming in the shallows at the other end of the beach, Cool science there. They were about a foot and a half long.
The next day David organized a dinghy fishing trip to try out a new technique he had been told about, vertical jigging. Basically you drop a jig deep and pull it up as fast as you can. I let Zack go, not realizing all of the other kids were staying home to do school, oops. He really wanted to go. David and 4 other boats went out into the mouth of the harbor for about 2 hours. They came back and only David and Zack had caught any fish. They had 2 black skipjack tunas. That was good because we were out of fish and we are trying to stretch our frozen meats as far as we can. Food is super expensive here, almost as expensive as St John. David cleaned the fish and Zack put a hook thru the cleaned carcass and tried to fish off the boat with it. We had just given up so that we could get to school, Zack put the hand line around the winch and a huge shark took the whole thing in one bite. So much for getting in the water to clean the waterline. Zack busted out his school work and after lunch the adults did boat projects while the kids went to the beach. They spent the afternoon building a hut on the beach. It was challenging because a couple of cows kept eating their roofing leaves. They had a great time and early to bed tonight, some of us are still feeling yesterdays hike.