Alan and Jean sharing our cruising news with friends, family.

20 July 2015 | Rabi Island Fiji
29 June 2015 | Suva Fiji
18 December 2013 | Auckland
05 December 2013 | Auckland
27 October 2013 | Vavau Tonga
12 September 2013 | Samoa
24 July 2013 | Moorea, Tahiti
19 July 2013 | Papeete
19 June 2013 | Nuka Hiva
02 June 2013 | Pacific Ocean
29 May 2013 | Pacific Ocean
24 May 2013 | Eastern Pacific Ocean
19 May 2013 | Western Pacific Ocean
16 May 2013 | Western Pacific Ocean
13 May 2013 | Isla Isabella
06 May 2013 | Isla Isabella
08 April 2013 | Shelter Bay marina, Colon.
28 March 2013 | Belize
27 March 2013 | Belize
03 March 2013 | Panamarina, Panama

Tuatara our new boat

08 December 2008 | Bay of Islands NZ
7th December 2008
Bay Of Islands, New Zealand
Wow what beautiful weather we are having in the Bay of Islands. We are anchored in Omakiwi bay, our first foray away from our mooring in Opua with our new yacht, Tuatara. The sun is already hot for 9am in early December, there is a light breeze ruffling the bay, the forecast for the next few days is perfect. Perfect for sitting in the sun to top up our fading Langkawi tans but we want to go sailing, get the sails up and see what Tuatara can do, our pre-purchase test sail gave us a taste, we want a little more now but the wind is not co-operating.

We purchased Tuatara not quite a month ago (photo, Tuatara anchored off Urupukapuka Island Bay of Islands). Tuatara is bigger and older than we intended when we first started looking for another yacht. She is 26yrs old, (GRP but no plastic fantastic!) a Wright 51 built in Whangarei by a professional boat yard originally for a Dr , the project took several years. By the time it was finished I think the keenness to go offshore had diminished. He kept it for 8 years until a gentleman called Rune Holmberg bought her and sailed single handed around the world (1994) trying to beat or at least match Chichesters time. Rune left from Tauranga and was essentially sponsored by Tauranga people and the city. He was not able to match Chichesters time but it was still a good effort. He wrote a book about his circumnavigation, Sailing The Full Circle, Solo, which we have on board. Mike, who we bought Tuatara from, bought her from Holmberg in 2000. The boat was run down and needed a lot of equipment renewed. Mike has spent a lot of time, money and effort on Tuatara, so we have inherited a boat that is ready to go anywhere. Mike has sailed her across the Pacific, around NZ and to Australia and back.

Tuatara has older looks, not classic, but still nice. We have a very comfy albeit small pilot house, a lovely roomy aft cabin and we could have quite a good party in the saloon.
We have the use of a mooring here in Opua until May. A large number of the cruising fleet have passed our mooring on the way in to clear customs. We will be joining the departees in April/May next year.

Opua and the Bay of Islands is a nice place to spend the next few months, we plan to take Tuatara sailing around these northern waters over the summer to reacquaint ourselves with the area. It has been a while since we have spent much time in these waters. Hopefully we will have family and friends visiting from time to time. We don't have a lot to do on Tuatara, mainly fit a new (sail mail capable) SSB and antifouling although there are bound to be other things that occur over the summer.

Since I started this blog entry we have had a good sail from Deep Cove across to the Nine Pin then back across the bay to anchor off Urupukapuka Is for the night. This is a lovely time to be in the Bay of Islands, the flashes of early red pohutakawa flowers hang over seemingly empty sandy beaches. Looking closer amongst the shells and pebbles we can see tiny nesting dotterels the same colour as the stones. DOC has fenced off some of the nesting areas so human visitors and the odd sheep don't crush their eggs.

The black oyster catchers are also beginning to nest, we saw a pair today which didn't realize they should be nesting in that fenced off area, a ranger may have to come and shift the temporary fence to accommodate their sea view. The male oyster catcher took exception to our presence and stalked up the beach, hoping to scare us away with his bright orange beak pointed at our ankles. We left them in peace, a nervous dad is not a good dad.

It is now Sunday evening the sun is starting to sink behind Waitangi, the working boaties sailed off towards Monday morning thoughts a few hours ago. Here in Paradise bay, on Urupukapuka Is, we have the company of 3 yachts full of teenagers on what I guess is an end of year school trip. The late afternoon was full of happy sounds of swimming teens in 21 degree water. Not to be beaten Alan decided he had to have a swim too. His was a very quick dip quickly followed by a warm shower. The kids were still swimming long after he was dressed, obviously the exuberance of youth (maybe lost but not forgotten by Alan!) helped them overcome the cold water temperature.

Back to our Opua mooring tomorrow to organize some canvas work and a few boat jobs that cant be done while wandering the Bay , although while in Omakiwi bay Alan finished and fitted the new outboard bracket for our stern. We will also be thinking about our next sail, maybe up to the Cavalli Islands next time, we will have bought some fishing lines by then, so fish will, hopefully, be on the menu.
Vessel Name: Tuatara
Vessel Make/Model: Alan Wright 51
Hailing Port: Opua NZ
Crew: Alan and Jean Ward
Tuatara's Photos - Talitha (Main)
Our land trip to Cuba March 2013
38 Photos
Created 18 March 2013
24 Photos
Created 26 January 2013
19 Photos
Created 24 January 2013
Mix of Photos while in Trinidad working on Tuatara at the Power boats yard at chaguaramas
40 Photos
Created 4 December 2012
ECO Tourism in Dominica
20 Photos
Created 1 April 2012
79 Photos
Created 1 April 2012
41 Photos
Created 31 March 2012
29 Photos
Created 31 March 2012
Barbados 2011/2012
23 Photos
Created 5 January 2012
Atlantic crossing Dec 2011
15 Photos
Created 5 January 2012
53 Photos
Created 29 November 2011
Tuatara and Crew in Rabat and surrounds October 2011
110 Photos
Created 24 October 2011
40 Photos
Created 17 September 2011
42 Photos
Created 6 August 2011
31 Photos
Created 6 August 2011
July 20011
8 Photos
Created 18 July 2011
Sicily July 2011
32 Photos
Created 18 July 2011
48 Photos
Created 5 July 2011
20 Photos
Created 3 July 2011
68 Photos
Created 27 May 2011
Turkey April 2011
42 Photos
Created 17 April 2011
Syria trip April 2011
82 Photos
Created 13 April 2011
82 Photos
Created 30 March 2011
51 Photos
Created 25 March 2011
32 Photos
Created 6 January 2011
62 Photos
Created 24 December 2010
36 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 12 December 2010
67 Photos
Created 29 November 2010
27th October 2010
113 Photos
Created 17 November 2010
22 Photos
Created 21 June 2010
62 Photos
Created 19 May 2010
39 Photos
Created 13 April 2010
48 Photos
Created 13 April 2010
70 Photos
Created 8 March 2010
89 Photos
Created 25 January 2010
Borneo East coast photos September 2009
25 Photos
Created 8 October 2009
Mainly Tawau yacht club and sailing kids
17 Photos
Created 8 October 2009
Includes Fleet review at Manado with the Indonesian navy and USS George Washington an aircraft carrier.
28 Photos
Created 4 September 2009
35 Photos
Created 4 September 2009
Saumlaki to Wotap cruising the Taminbar Islands
54 Photos
Created 4 September 2009
28 Photos
Created 13 June 2009
10 Photos
Created 8 December 2008
23 Photos
Created 8 December 2008
Folder with sub folders of different areas of Vietnam May/June 2008
1 Photo | 3 Sub-Albums
Created 26 July 2008
Cambodia trip May 2008
34 Photos
Created 20 July 2008
Bits and pieces around Phuket, Thailand Feb to April 2008
19 Photos
Created 7 April 2008
NZ to Indonesia 2007
930 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 6 April 2008
Photos of Bangkok to Laos trip Feb 2008
60 Photos
Created 13 March 2008
Langkawi to Phuket, including PhiPhi islands and Phang Nga Bay
47 Photos
Created 28 January 2008
44 Photos
Created 8 December 2007
23 Photos
Created 2 December 2007
25 Photos
Created 25 October 2007
58 Photos
Created 24 October 2007

Sailing in the Pacific

Who: Alan and Jean Ward
Port: Opua NZ