We've Arrived at Minerva Reef!
22 May 2012
At about 10:00 a.m. this morning we traversed the pass from the deep blue see into the protected lagoon of Minerva Reef, the famous circle of coral that sits in the middle of the ocean. We crossed the lagoon to the southeast corner, which seem to offer the best protection from the swells, and dropped the hook in about 50 feet of water. Off the bow of the boat there is a is shallow turquoise bar of shallow, backed by a jagged reef that is getting pummel by a line of huge breakers. The wind is blowing about 20-25 kts from the southeast so the swells hitting Minerva are significant. That being said we are very comfy and secure at anchor inside the reef.
There were 5 boats here when we arrived and 5 more boats came in more or less the same time as us - all part of the good weather window gang that left New Zealand last Thursday, heading to Fiji and Tonga. It seems we all took about 6 days to get here. Mark and the gang on Merkava just took off on a dive drip to the PASS within a few minutes of getting anchored. Talk about keen! One of the other boats organized an excursion, so off it went full of people with a gaggle of dinghies trailing behind. Beth and I decided to just chill out and enjoy being stationary. A good brunch is underway in the galley.
We're not sure how long we'll be here - hopefully 3 - 4 days but that will depend on weather. We'll let you know.
If you want to see where we are, and you have Google Earth loaded on your computer, go to our blog site and then go to our map link. There is a Google Earth map below the regular map. Anyhow, if you look there you should be able to zoom on the atoll and see our position. It looks pretty cool - a blue coral bangle laying in the middle of the sea!
We'll keep in touch with more info when we go exploring . . .