Click this link if you want to start at the beginning:
FIRST BLOG ENTRY
If you want to start at the beginning of our trip:
START OF TRIP
If you want to see the story of our trip from South Carolina
(where we bought the boat)
to Lake Ontario Click this link:
After just a little more than 12,500 nautical miles, we have arrived in the magic land of New Zealand....
As we were approaching land, Shelley could not help but compare the scene to one viewed many times in her childhood of her arrival in her family home, Newfoundland. Ironically, the "Bay of Islands" is the same both in Newfoundland and here in New Zealand...
Just before we left Tonga, our good friends, Tom and Pascal joined us for a few days. They sail an amazing catamaran called Water Music. Made of carbon fiber this boat can make over 250 nautical miles a day! (for comparison, a really good day for us is 150). They are both skilled sailors and love to live and sail fast... they left at the same time we did and arrived here in New Zealand in 4 days... (we took 15 with a stop in Minerva reef).
|S/V Water Music|
|Street food at the Saturday Market...|
|Tom & Pascal|
We had one last get together at Big Mama's and we were ready to go!
Our time at Minerva Reef was spectacular. Imagine being many miles from the closest land, yet safe from almost all the elements of the open ocean... In our week there we saw but three other cruising boats, and no boats from the reef's possessing country of Tonga.
That meant the fish were abundant. Which also meant that getting diner was as close as rolling off the boat... We feasted on Lobster, Snapper and Parrotfish.
|I went one day with Andreas from s/v Honeybee (in German)|
On our last day, I dove alone in the pass where we entered into the reef. The place was teaming with reef fish and so I speared two Parrotfish for lunch. Unfortunately, there were a few sharks attracted by the blood who began to get really aggressive. As I was alone, it presented a bit of a difficult ascent. I kept my game bag close and fended the 9 Black Tips and Greys away with the point of my spear. Without time for a safety stop, I returned to the dinghy with lunch and a new found respect for my friends with big teeth....
We joined back up with our good friends, Bruce & Kerry from s/v Haven... What great people...