Passage NZ to Rarotonga - ARRIVAL!
05 May 2013
We have arrived! It's 10:00 am Sunday morning May 5 and we are med tied to the pier in Avatiu Harbour in Rarotonga, Cook Islands. Yeah! We are so happy to be here after 14 days at sea. We are the only cruising sailboat tied up to the pier! Perhaps the first of the season.
On the last night of passage Sarah Jean went topless! What a naughty girl! Yes - we rolled up our protective cockpit enclosure, also known as THE BUBBLE of TRANQUILITY, to spend an idyllic South Pacific night with an unobstructed view of the heavens! The seas calmed down and the wind died so we motored under a canopy of stars. It was gorgeous! A wonderful way to end the passage; gazing at the stars and sleeping well without the big seas.
Rarotonga is a mountainous island with many sharply pointed verdant peaks, reminding us a lot of the Marquesas. It looks very tropical and very gorgeous. Can't wait to explore!
Here is a short synopsis of our passage from Opua, NZ to Rarotonga, Cook Islands:
- 14 days, 1,883 miles - 93 engine hours - in light air and some battery charging - highest 24 hour run - 154 nm - lowest - 110 nm - highest boat speed - 10.0 kts - 1 gale and associated front with highest wind at 44 kts - biggest seas 4 m - number of squalls - too many to remember - damage: minimal - Life Sling box on transom rail swept away by big wave - all other systems were flawless - westerly winds (NW to SW) for 11 out of 14 days - followed Jimmy Cornell's route, sailing east from NZ. - Then turned NE at 34 S and 174 W, a little earlier than Jimmy recommends but we had a low coming and Bob McDavit routed us north early - 2 sailboats spotted - "Longshot" and "Allouette" - 6 freighters spotted en route to and from NZ and Raro - books read by Beth: 3 - spotted 6 albatross - 10 sunny days out of 14 - ate 30 bananas - spilled food on the floor 5 times - soaked in salt water 4 times when boarding waves came into the cockpit - best snack - hummus and carrots - best meal - lasagna - best new artist (music) listened to on David's Ipod - Sarah Harmer - best new addition to the boat in Opua this year - new stainless grab bars in the galley and saloon table top - tied for best new addition - upwind jib from Willis - pulled us along at 6-7 kt at 35 degrees apparent in the low. Fantastic! - cool memories - sailing along the path of the full moon, and numerous star filled nights
We will email again in a few days to share our adventures on land with you. It's currently 31 degrees in the cabin. Hot! The local Cook Island kids are jumping off the pier at our stern to cool off in the water.
We plan to stay in Raro for a week. On Monday, May 13, weather permitting, we will depart for Penhryn Island. This is a tiny coral atoll located about 750 miles from here on the most northern edge of the Cook Island Group. W expect this next passage to take 5-6 days.
Thanks for joining us on our trip from NZ to Rarotonga. We look forward to chatting with you again on our next passage. See you then!
Bet & Norm + David
Beth & Norm + David