19 November 2008 | Vanuatu
It was another early day. We were out of the anchorage by 5AM and on our way to Tegua in the Torres Group. Once again we wish we could have stayed another day to listen to the water music and drink Kava with the wonderful folks of Lakona Bay. We are happy to be moving north though.
It was a scattered squall day if ever there was one. The sky was just about completely overcast all day and we had squalls all around us most of it. We got hit once and after that the wind went light and variable. We motored for the rest of the day with the jib away and reef one in the main to keep the boom calm in the beam seas. We routed around one big nasty bit which helped our approach angle to the Torres.
We came up along the windward side of the southern islands and then through the pass south of Tegua. We dropped the main and passed between a little islet just offshore on the way in to Hayter Bay. We never saw less than 100 feet of water or so. The Bay is a lovely anchorage with a beautiful beach ashore. This could fool you into thinking that you could anchor in close. Not the case. The bottom is about 70 feet deep and then coral heads pop up everywhere and the bottom comes up fast. Best to anchor near the mouth of the bay in 70 feet.
We were surprised to see another boat here. We had a nice chat with Kleiner Bar (Little Bear), a family of 4 from Brazil. They are heading to the Solomons as well so we will look forward to seeing them again soon.
Margaret dove on the anchor just before sunset. The water is astoundingly clear here. You can see the 70 foot bottom from the deck at 5PM in the afternoon! We just got a little rain but the anchorage is quite nice and would be great in anything but a strong westerly.
We will be sad to leave Vanuatu tomorrow. Too little time, too many cyclones (Vanuatu is second only to New Caledonia in average cyclone landfalls, with 2.5 a year). Tomorrow morning we will be off to the Solomon Islands. We are going from out of the way, to really out of the way, and looking forward to it.