On to Oahu
22 June 2011 | Ala Wai Yacht Harbor, Honolulu, Hawaii
We spent yesterday afternoon picking up some aloha gear -- board shorts and t-shirts before descending on Captain Jacks for a couple of rum drinks and a lite fare to get us in the proper frame of mind for the 77 nm passage to Honolulu.
We departed Lahaina Marina around 1830 -- just a half hour before sunset.
And good we did! That was my/our first time seeing the Lahaina side of Maui during the day and it gave our resident photographer (Jim) opportunity to click some neat shots of the island from the water.
From there it was on to the famed Molokai Channel. For those of us 'in the know' on the west coast sailing scene, the Molokai Channel is like the Holy Grail. That is because the most famed race of them all -- the TransPac -- finishes just past the channel and there are sooooo many cool sailing photos of maxi sleds like Merlin, Pyewachet, and others flying down the channel under chute on their way to a "Barn Door" victory for first place elapsed time.
So it was with a bit of emotion that I entered the channel last night. The wind gusted up a bit to around 20k + while we were beam reaching across the channel/ Jim was a bit nervous because of the 'tippy' thing and I have to admit there were a few times I was looking to depower the rig. But overall it was an incredible sail as we caught up and passed another sailboat. A tug boat had to shine his bright spot light on the load he was towing before we did a hurried gybe to avoid him and then have to heat up a bit to duck the stern of the other sailboat! I mean, geez. They/we got the whole dang ocean and it all ends up in one spot!!
The rest of the night was uneventful and Jim and I both arrived at Ala Wai fully refreshed after 3 hours of sleep each! (Not!) The entrance to Ala Wai was tricky as only 20' off the channel the surfers were stacked up like cord wood hooking into a left break. I gunned the motor to make sure we didn't get broadsided by a breaking wave and we were fortunate enough to make it past the break and into the bar.
Today we traveled to the only West Marine store in the islands to pick up some much-needed repair parts. We are staying at the fuel dock tied up next to Davied on a 23' Contessa. David sailed his 23' boat from Pt. Townsend to HI!! It has no motor and no icebox. What a trip!!!
But the fuel dock is fully equipped with what we need (fuel, laundry, etc.) and we hope to be able to head back to Seattle on Sat. But first on our priority list is rest and we won't leave here till we are ready. And given the paradise-like conditions, well, that could be awhile!! :-)