Saturday, August 28, 2010

Cruising New Caledonia!

Toketie made it out of the anchorage in Noumea! The city was fine for a week, lots of bagettes and croissants! And the wine is excellent here...full bodied red Beaujolais and Bordeaux at prices even we can afford! But we are now sitting in a remote anchorage at the end of an inlet with our good friends from Sukanuk that we have not seen since NZ. Took a dinghy ride up a shallow river to a small waterfall and supposed 'hot springs' which were not hot but a nice pool anyway. Clouding over and a stationery front to the S will keep us here for a few days and then hopefully do some more exploring.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Arrived New Caledonia safely!

Made it! Not a bad passage overall but the cold beer and hot shower will be very welcome!!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Approaching New Caledonia!

With 110nm to go, Toketie is on her final approach to New Caledonia! The sky is deep blue with a smattering of puffy white cumulus clouds or 'tradewind clouds' as we refer to them. The wind is very gentle from the SE and the seas are kind. One can not ask for much more in an ocean passage! We hope to clear Havannah Pass and enter the main reef early afternoon on Friday (in New Cal). The AIS (Automatic Identification System) we installed paid for itself in the wee hours of this morning as the 'Coral Coast', a very large freighter, was bearing down on us directly ahead on a reciprocal course to ours! Calling the vessel on its MMSI # alerted a crew member who then had a look out the window and confirmed he could see us! The vessel then very kindly altered course to pass us safely.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Smooth Sailing!

After sailing out of the rain and clouds overnight to clear blue skies and sunshine with a gentle tradewind large off the port quarter, we are having some of our best sailing ever! (touching wood)

Saturday, August 14, 2010


Motored for 24 hours with no wind. Good offing from land, now sailing very slowly using drifter. Clear skies and trough ahead appears to have moved south.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Toketie ready!

Well, after a few very relaxing days in Momi Bay, Fiji, it looks like
tomorrow, Saturday in this part of the world is a good day to go to
sea! We avoided leaving port on Friday the 13th for fear of tempting
fate. Weather looks fairly light ahead but we shall see what it
brings. Managed to connect to Airmail so should be able to provide
brief updates by HAM radio en route.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Leaving Fiji!

We have not actually left Fiji yet! We are anchored in Momi Bay, a small bay within sight of the main pass through the reef. The winds have been howling for days and a trough of bad weather is approaching New Caledonia so we thought we would hide out here and wait for things to calm down a bit before venturing forth. A 35 knot tailwind and cross seas is not our choice of sea conditions! It is forecast to start to settle down tomorrow so we will look at the weather in the morning again and decide whether to set out. Tried to get into Airmail over the HF radio today but had no luck connecting so might not be able to send updates along the way. We will, however, be doing a radio schedule with Derek and Anthea on Sukanuk who are in New Caledonia now.
The extra day in the anchorage was welcome as we had a few loose ends to tie up before going to sea.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Toketie on the move!

Well, we have left the security of the marina and are now anchored off the sugarmill town of Lautoka. A nasty looking cold front sits between us and New Caledonia, however, so we will cool our heels till it passes. We are fueled, watered, propaned, and otherwise provisioned to head West so when the weather looks right, we will clear customs and immigration and head out the pass for open water! It is about 40 miles to the pass from here, about a 600 mile passage and another 40 miles inside the reef to Noumea in New Caledonia. Hoping the Convergence Zone with its squalls and thunderstorms stays North of us and the tradewinds from the SE are steady along the way!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

laundry day!

Slaving in the hot Vuda Point Marina, Fiji!

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Living in the minute!

Once again….my apologies to all of our loyal vicarious blogging
sailors out there! I know I have been negligent in updating you on
our situation. There is no excuse, as usual, and I plead lethargy!

In brief…I survived two months of refitting Toketie…Linda arrived to restore me to sanity….and we escaped to Musket Cove for a few weeks of much needed rest. Soon being bored with resting, we took scuba diving lessons and earned our open water PADI diving certificates and made four ocean dives!

But we are back in the marina, doing the final preparations for leaving Fiji…a very mixed blessing….as we do not feel we have really finished with this place….but it is time to move on and the call of
the West is strong so we get up early to take the 'chicken bus' into
town…run around like mad photocopying charts and guides, buying whatever we can find to stock the cupboards for the journey ahead….one more trip up the mast, fuel, water, gas…all the nicessities…..and the parting with friends, always hard as everyone follows their own personal dream….but the ocean's track is not written and only by moving somewhat blindly into the future can it be known….so now we look at the weather charts and prepare ourselves to leave the safe confines of life ashore for the open sea….I think we are ready!