Overnight to Namonuito Atoll
17 February 2009 | Philippine Sea
After a mellow morning with some squalls blowing by we started to do final checks on the boat. Eric and Jeff on Whistler left for the atoll at around 11AM. I hope they go slow or they'll arrive in the dark. As it turns out we would all leave today. The seas were 3 meters today and coming down tomorrow but the wind was 15 today and coming up to 20 tomorrow. Hideko and I were thinking we could day sail Namonuito at 110 miles with 20 knots on the beam. Then Angelique called on the VHF.
The local guys on the fiberglass boat came out to Angelique and demanded a $60 anchoring fee. We had of course already paid the port plenty of fees and were told that we could stage up here no problem by John, the harbor master. At told them nothing doing and they left mad. We'll we don't stay where we're not welcome.
We toyed with sailing up to a deserted island (maybe some peace!?) but in the end decided to head for Namonuito reefed down for an overnight rather than messing around. Angelique left before us and had no problem getting out the pass. Eric had called back to let us know that the track was good but to bias north. The chart here needs an offset but even if you offset it some parts line up with reality but then others are still off a bit. You can't get the whole chart dialed in perfectly.
So here we are in, what the chart calls, the Philippine sea. We should arrive at Namonuito in the early morning. We have double reefed the main and jib to keep the speed down under 7 knots. The seas are reasonable and the wind is 15ish just behind the beam. The sunset squall program is in progress and we are hoping to dodge as many as possible. Angelique is off our beam and Whistler is somewhere ahead but out of VHF range.
We are hopefull that the folks out in the atolls will be friendly and kind, capacities we are beginning to miss here in FSM.
80nm to Namonuito