Leela Year Six - Across the Pacific

Well.... to our own surprise here we are

01 October 2020 | Fakarava
24 September 2020 | Fakarava South Pass
19 August 2020 | Papeete, Tahiti
02 August 2020 | Pape’ete, French Polynesia
09 July 2020 | Papeete, Tahiti
21 June 2020 | Taha'a, French Polynesia
29 May 2020 | Cook's Bay, Moorea
14 May 2020 | Tahiti, French Polynesia
08 May 2020 | Enroute Gambiers to Tahiti
30 April 2020 | Rikitea, Gambiers, French Polynesia
26 March 2020
24 March 2020 | The Gambiers, French Polynesia
08 March 2020 | Taravai Island, The Gambiers
03 March 2020 | Airport Anchorage, Gambier
21 February 2020 | Kouaku, Gambier Islands
17 February 2020 | Rikitea, Mangareva, Gambier Islands
12 February 2020 | Rikitea, Mangareva Island, The Gambiers
25 January 2020 | Nuku Hiva
22 January 2020 | Ua Huka
14 December 2019 | Tahiti


17 February 2020 | Rikitea, Mangareva, Gambier Islands
Graham Openshaw
This post has a couple of functions. I want to talk about hiking and living here but I'm also trying to find a way to provide images with VERY limited internet access. It looks like embedding smaller images into the post is a good way to go. I will still post albums when I get the opportunity but this does have the advantage of quick access so let's give it a try.

This shot was taken on one of the outer islands last week but it shows the layering of the different types of tree really well. The lower levels are different types of Acacia and others not known to us. Higher up these give way to fir trees.

In pré-colonial times these islands were completely deforested by over-population and the subsequent collapse of the ecology so few of these trees are native. More can be read here.

Birgit and Christian from the Austrian boat Pitufa invited us to join them hiking up one of the two mountains on Mangareva. There are many ancient structures in the lower forests like this platform.

The day we went up kids from the local high school were on a field trip to help clear the path. As you can see traditional teenager clothing is global....

We chose this peak because the top is treeless, providing great views. It was quite a climb after too long sitting about on the boat.

Looking back along the island you can see the extent of the forest, the many pearl farms in the shallow bays and the barrier reef just below the horizon.

Taking a break just below the summit.

This is a strange place. It is probably the wealthiest island away from Tahiti because of all the pearl farms but, there is no bank, no ATM, no gas station, almost no communications or places to eat. You cannot buy vegetables because no one here eats them and you cannot buy fruit because everyone grows it. You can buy expensive tinned goods, VERY expensive beer and occasionally, eggs. You can buy baguettes but only between the hours of 4am and 5:30am. The shop adjacent to the bakery does not carry fresh bread but will sell you a frozen baguette (as bad as it sounds....) at any time of day. As I say, strange.

We have managed to find someone who will sell some fish and we can probably get some more vegetables back on Taravai in exchange for a bit of digging.

After a couple of days of horrendous weather, heavy rain and 80kmh squalls, the weather is improving and we are heading out to one of the small islands on the barrier reef to get back in the water. More soon.
Vessel Name: Leela
Vessel Make/Model: Bristol 38.8
Hailing Port: Portsmouth, NH
Crew: Graham and Janaki
We are a Brit and an Australian now based in the wonderful community of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. We have a delightful home there but a couple of years ago we began to feel a bit over-domesticated so we thought we would buy another boat and head south. [...]
Leela, a Bristol 38.8 has turned out to be a wonderful cruising boat for us. Some might find it a little cramped by modern standards but it feels like just the right balance of living space and storage to us. She sails like a dream. She is remarkably well balanced and is comfortable in pretty [...]
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