So let’s talk about Tahiti
19 April 2020 | Santa Cruz, Galapagos
19th April 2020
We woke this morning to find an e-mail from our agent in French Polynesia saying that we had been cleared to go to Tahiti, possibly via Nuka Hiva. This is very good news and just what we hoped for. We laid out the logic for wanting to make this trip a few days ago. So now it's action stations, as we complete our preparations.
We are planning to leave on Wednesday morning. Our passage plan will aim for Nuka Hiva, where we may be able to stop to take on food and fuel. Nuka Hiva is about 3,000 nautical miles away, with a journey time of 20-25 days. After Nuka Hiva we have another 700 miles to cover, taking about 5 days, to get down to Tahiti and Papeete, where we will check in for an extended period of time until we can head west again. If we are not able to stop in Nuka Hiva we will have to complete the whole trip in one - so about 25-30 days at sea. Today's picture shows the route we are planning and the winds we can expect on Wednesday. It looks like a nice long reach.
We are now making sure that we have food, cooking gas, diesel fuel, emergency water and anything else we can think of to last for 30 days, plus some contingency.
On the technical side, we have successfully retrieved our stuck stern anchor. Just as D & G were in the dinghy trying to lift it, along came the park rangers in their fast boat with 300 HP on the back. They took the anchor line and dragged it out in seconds - anchor retrieved and job done. We just need to splice up the two bits of line now.
The dinghy and engine have now been lifted, cleaned and stowed. The wind pilot is back on the stern (this is our autopilot that uses no power), and we are gradually converting ourselves back from a floating caravan into a sailing machine.
The next couple of days will be spent finishing off our fruit and veg shopping, filling the water tank, charging batteries, making bread, cleaning the bottom of the boat of its thick green coat, finalising paperwork, stowing things away and generally getting ready for an ocean passage. We will report back.