we are 124 NM out from 9 pin with 1 to 1.5 mrt S TO SW swell, by this time tomorrow should be on the Q dock . looking forward sighting land and a hot shower. this trip we have had amazing weather clear skies and big moon at night, even looks like the sun is going to put in appearance today, though the cold wind does spoil it abit.
A big shout out to to Gulf Harbour radio for all the work and effort they put into keeping us informed, with affairs of the world and weather. so From Pilgrim and her crew a big thank you.
Pilgrim is now in the top end of the front not had much in the way of rain, there is some showing on the radar.
had very little in the way of wind just one brief period with the rain so progress is all the iron spinnaker. Hampered by a current to boot
The seas have remained calm over last 4 days and this morning the wind is light out of NE perhap 4kts so we continue to motorsail toward Opua, thinking Wed evening arrival. So will be listening to what David has with regards the fronts this morning.
Have made reasonable progress over last 24 hrs the sea state is such that we are not getting knocked back by wave action as all we have is a very lazy ground swell of half a mtr winds of 6-8 kts awesome conditions clear skies noticing a chill in the air though at night now half way. looks like our conditions are not going to change much over the next few days.
well here it is saturday morning 0430 and dawn is up as well progress has been good we have weaved our way through all the sea mounts by avoiding them we find that our passage is much smoother. The motor has had a good work out as the wind has dropped away toward the center of the high currently have 6/8kts of sth of east with 10/12 across the deck. the seas are slight with maybe a SE swell of 1/2mtr 675 to run reckon on wed arrival at nine pin.
Ran out of wind and have motor sailed our way down to near the 22 Sth with wind slowly filling in and now back under sail, well will be shortly despite a current against us. all good here
Just passing Tana very happy with sea state, there has only been a couple of bumpy bits due to sea mounts . Clear skies and big moon nice .
At anchor just outside Port Vila the light rain is still with us , only on and off intend of heading in to Vila today.
decided to stay put in our White house bay after taking a run out to assess the falls as they are termed at devils point meet with head winds in the mid twentys and up to 33kts which would have made for a rather interesting passage, as one has to turn pretty much side on to head into port villa 3 Mtr plus rollers would have been loads of fun , yea right !!! As we are still with time on our side decided to sit and wait it out for the winds to abate.
Ok we left Epi bright and early and made our way towards Port Villa , with wind in just sth of east . a good quarter, only to have it more toward the south making it not such a easy run still we are anchored up in a bay in from Leinamasae point for the night and shall head on into port villa tomorrow as devils point looked very uninviting. dont appear to have any coverage here thats all
We have shifted further down Epi Island now in a achoraged that we and others have overlooked Bonkowai in from Cape Foreland it has very little in the way of roll that has been found in other bays , Lamen is known for roll.
We will be looking at the wind direction over the next few days for that shift into the east is on the way for our hop over the 50NM to NTH Efata.
A cloudless day here in Lamen Bay no breeze as we go into our last day here, time to move on so will spend our last day ashore as its market day here. and got to say our goodbye's to all those here that we have encountered.
A meal is planned at Benny's tonight.
Yes still in Lamen Bay, have found lots to keep us entertained be it take on the walk up the hill to the hospital, the very steep hill I might add. Benny how manages to produce some amazing meals in her little restaurant and a good source veges and fruit. there are several shops that stock some needed supplies. regular supply boats call in in fact there have been 5 this week so far.
good morning from lamen bay on Epi our time here has been interesting with our regular trips out to the reef , to observing the turtles here to the to and froing of the dougon. and our trips ashore to the well organized village . our moving on is delayed until acouple of boats get into NZ as we have good internet from here.
scattered cloud around this morning perhaps 30% so pick it as another warm day here in yeman bay, went to the local restaurant along with 4 others, very enjoyable meal right up to the desert. at this stage we will be moving on tomorrow .
we have found our way back to Lamen Bay on Epi island , having left our much loved west side of Malakula We were only anchored up for a short period before we sighted our first turtle, followed by multi sighting and at one stage had 5 suface at once, the dugoun showed himself this morning as he came into the bay to fed.
I plan to go over to my heavily infested reef and do phase two of eradication now that I have restocked my supply of vinegar . We shall proceed down Epi over the next week stopping where we can.
Will be on yhe move again today not to sure how far, will depend on the weather as we are getting some rain at the moment. Once this lifts, if indeed it does, then one will decide, there are a couple of places that we should be given consideration as stopovers.
Now tucked up in Levualeui Bay behind a island that gives great protection toward the sth end of the bay there are other islands that could well do the sam. Will check them out when its time to move on. There appears to be several villages scattered through out we have visited only one so far.
We are on the move again today but not far only about 5 nm down the coast, the west side of Malakula has been a great find for us providing us with great sheltered bays awesome beaches and friendly as people. If we return to Vanuatu this area has to be included in our itinerary. will let folk know where we end up today as lots of the place are not named on our charts.
Will sadly move on from our little bit of paradise tomorrow, so be doing the rounds today saying our farewells. get a last swim in, the water is so clear here and te coral has been a huge improvement on other places that we have visited.
another spectacular day in paradise with a foray into the village for round two of sewing machine fix ups.
I shall mention that a French chap on one of the other boats here left for Lugonville to seek help at the hospital there some 4wks ago had infection in his foot got that cleared up and now it has traveled up the leg to his knee which is not a pretty site. taking antibiotics has not got on top of it, thankfully they have taken my advise had head off.
Serves as a warning to be aggressive when treating wounds.
we have moved further around Malakula now in the most delightful Coraline Bay to get in here you have to passes the one of choice is the narrowest, great anchorage in 3-4 mrts there are the odd coral heads one has to watch out for.
Thinking of moving on from Metenover Bay today to a bay around the corner as we make our way toward the bottom of.
Malakula. It has been a great spot to anchor visit and explore.
currently tucked up in Metenover Bay toward the bottom of Malakula Island on the west side having arrived here around 0900hrs yesterday in showery conditions. this is a rather large bay with protection from all but the west anchoring on sand with 4 mtrs under our keel. there is a waterfall at one end of the beach that we intend on visiting while at the other there is the pass into a rather large inshore lake. Off into the village to get the lay of the land, re permission as t what and where we can go. but it appears that a lot of the restriction of the past have been dropped.
underway further down Malakula to Wintua. After spending a pleasant night in behind the reef at Lamandranga pt the run should be around the 2hrs.
looks like another stunning day here on the west side of Malakula, in Lambumbu bay where we arrived last night a new and yet to be checked out place all we can hear is birds
this morning find us on the west side of Malakula in Espiegle Bay off Malua village/ school, what a great spot we moved here last night from around the corner at Molin village after spending 3 days in there company both spots are great anchorages on sandy bottom, one can tuck up in depths of 5mtrs in to near on 50mtrs on the shore.
We have finally made the move from Ratu island and crossed over to the Makula island, looking to going down the west side as we head south. anchored up in Espiegle Bay where there is a small village , with lovely people they have the primary school here, so the have the other local children attend. promised to go to there market day tomorrow so guess we wont be moving on until Friday and then only a short way from here to our next proposed spot.
100% Overcast and windy we are still at Ratu Island by Malo great little spot to sit out of the elements but alass we are getting set to move on perhaps not today wait for the wind lay down. PS can hear you here in Vanuatu
We are still at Ratua island finding a great place to chill out turtles and the odd dugeon can be seen . looking at moving on over to makula next week.
Delayed our departure until this morning,as it took us longer than expected to do the last round shopping ( trying to get a signature and official stamp on documentation proves to be a not so easy task) its only 10nm to our destination on Mala as the cloud and misty rain is persisting we are heading out this morning.
Have been holed up at Luganville for awhile, looking at our options for the rest of our time here, to head up to The banks and Torres Islands is going to have to wait untill another trip this way as time would not allow us the benifit of looking around properly. So the dicision is to head out of here over to the top of Malakula with view to cross over to Ambrym then start working our way south.
Good morning we are now back over on Malakula isl after coming over from Pentecost yesterday when the wind went into the SW and made things uncomfortable there, anchored up in Norsup bay just up from port Stanley. this is the area that hold the largely french speaking population. Our intention is to move up to Wala island this morning to check out that area.
We are moving on down Pentecost island today to waterfall bay, Highly reckomend Bwatnapne bay as a stop off to anyone cruising this area .
We departed Maewo island in the aftrnoon after snorkeling the reef toward the point of Asanvari bay while there was current one was able to take in the abundant fish life in that area. while we saw a few Nudibranch if we had used lungs we could have taken in the full extent of what was there. Now anchored up in Batnavine Bay in calm water on Pentecost island a very pretty spot with a long beach in front of what appears a substainal village ( yet to go into shore) . Have noted that it is turtle heaven here, with some 15 to 20 seen last evening.
at the most popular anchorage on Maewo island , Asanvari is by far the best spot down the western side. Not only do we have good protection in a great bay with good holding, One can go ashore to view the impressive waterfall and follow that up by walking up the track to the top where there is a lookout, the view is fantastic and well worth the climb.
Alex asked if we wanted to walk around, if given this chance take it as it meanders through and under some very impressive tropical forest. the highlight was the massive Banyon trees that drop airal roots down some 70 to 80 feet which serve to support there branches, how they survive hurricanes even the locals are not sure but use there massive trunk systems as protection during the blows.
We parked off Naronova village on Maewo island, Which allows one good holding and avoid the slop if you move right in close to the shore. 5/6mtrs about 30 mrts from the beach. The people here are happy to receive visitors found that they like all the islands produce copra and by crop of kava. We are moving down Maewo today to the bottom of it to Asanvari where there is a good spot that we can go ashore and walk up to what is reported as, a spectacular water fall.
Have over the last couple of days been making our way up Ambae island ,having made the jump across from Hog harbour ( Champagne beach) while this island has no real defined bays on te western side there are indentations that do give some protection from the slop that can find its way into the lee side. We are currently at the top of Ambae island where there is a true black sandy beach that affords good shelter and anchorage right in close to it, toward the south end one can find boulders the holding appears good. we are going to move on over to Maewo Island a 8nm run where it is hoped that we find some good diving and snorkeling.
We are anchored up in a Aore bay on having hopped our way up from Epi island stopping at the Maskelynes islands for afew days, known for there healthy population of mossies, plenty of repellant of detol and baby oil. they were very friendly non demanding but happy to trade ,the island of Sako is only about 1 mtr above high tide consisted of 6 villages with well worn path that one can walk around the whole way from one tidy village to the next. attempts to swim with dugongs was a failure due to clarity of the water could only see the outline of them.
Headed up the coast of Malakula to Crab bay such a neat spot in calm still waters.
Tomorrow we have about 3nm to Luganville to await our passengers and restock
Departing Lamen bay on Epi island for Malakula only a 20nm hop, te stay here has been interesting as this is the island high school added to that the 50yr celebrations of independence which was carried out over the last 5 days, lots singing , games and heaps of speeches. the bay here holds a goodly number of turtles that are not worried by us. reports of a manatee was seen yesterday here as well.
We arrived port vila Vanuatu at 1800 hrs, after what can be described a pretty fast passage , motorsailing all but the last 20hrs. Sea state was considered calm, Have to track down customs and get ourselves here officially. what have noticed is the bird song is great, haven't heard it like this hear at other islands that we have visited.
this report finds us with 83nm to run to Port Villa @ 0630hrs. We manage to off the motor around 2300hrs and enjoy a peaceful sail now have a breeze of 12/15kts.
The wind has filled and we now have 8 to 10 kts not quite enough to allow us to sail and keep up a reasonable speed . we have 235 nm to go so looking like friday morning arrival.
cleared out of fiji yesterday, and got underway at 1200. we are now 403 NM away from port Villa, the seas are quite mild so making progress easy .
Our last day in Saweni Bay as we get ourselves ready for our trip across to Vanuatu it appears that the rain has passed with the sun shining and very little cloud around.
sitting in Saweni Bay on a wet saturday , about to venture into Latoka to do a reprovisioning in prep for our departure to Vanuatu on monday some 600nm to the west.
have moved up to Waya island with the intention of seeing the weather system out, south is the only direction that could exposed.
now down in the Blue lagoon area , after the quite of our last couple of weeks there is a marked increase of activity.
looks like another stunner day for us sun is already up and will be including going up to the main village to do our Sevusevu in our activities
Arrived at Yasawa island at 1700 hrs last night after a very enjoyable sail from Yadua looking forward to our time out here as it has been 5yrs since we were last here.
We are moving camp today, departing Yadua to the Yasawa's so its a early start for us to avoid making the pass before the light fads
the front/low has found us and w have had light to moderate rain most of the night .
this report finds us still at Yadua with intention of moving on around Wed
Things are going great here at Yadua Sean and I took the run around to the village while the wind was down to a gentle zypher around 7 miles. There are 70 people in there village with well established gardens solar power to all homes and the chief was able to tell us the score for the sevens as well as the Crusaders and Chiefs matches.
we ended up returning back to pilgrim via the weathered side, encircled the island we did.
been out snorkeling and finding good coral growth here well stocked with reef fish along with our targeted Nudibranchs with such vast area we are going to have our time cut out covering as much as we can. At least the wind is not so bad now and the day is shaping up to be a hot one.
This morning finds use out at the Ladua Islands which we visited some 5 years ago they are unique from the point of view that Fiji's iguana was discovered here and only on the smallest island, hence we are are not allowed to land on it as they are endangered and there is a protector who lives there. Ladua is at the other end of the Bligh straight so is subjected to the wind that can honk through the area ( no power issues as wind generator keeps pumping away)
Now at Yadua island intend spending sometime here.
we have moved on from Savusavu an dare now in Bau Bay around from coconut point. Apparently was a base for the removal of the sandlewood. today we make the short hop over to Yandua island , looking forward to going back there again.
yah! the pump arrived can now plan on moving in the direction of Yadua, putting pump to work today cleaning up our fuel, getting supplies from the well stocked shops already done the market, mustnot forget the sevusevu packs.
Going to be here in savusavu for duration of at least the rest of the week not, that its a bad place to be.
there is a lesson here for other folk if ordering in parts from overseas never ever use the postal service, DHL may cost but there service is great. I ordered from NZ 2 x packages both departed nz they same day Thursday so the paper work said.
I had the one that was sent DHL in my hands on Monday , How ever the other which I requested DHL they sent NZ postal it still has not arrived and wont be here until sometime in the weekend. Not happy with the people who did not send as requested.
getting twitchy waiting for parts to arrive , once they do we will move on undecided where to but would like to head up Rambi way and around the top via Ring golds. Our permit has all islands on it Hmmm don't think that's possible in one season.
Stunning morning in Savusavu cloudless sky, we are awaiting the arrival of DHL packages that should be here Monday, Once they arrive we are out of here, not that we dont enjoy it here
we are going to be holed up in Savusavu for awhile just catching up with all those little jobs that one never got done before departure or got added on the trip ( part of the joy of cruising ) maintenance in exotic places , but hey it is a great place to undertake and tackle that list.
big welcome backs ! tells us that we are in Fiji check is a breeze. Customs informed us that we are number 13 , no dought that will change over the coming weeks
this morning finds us approaching Savusavu , should be making our way up for check in around 0830. so to all those folk that have been following us on YIT Pilgrim is now in Fiji. What a goergious day it is to there is nothing but blue to be seen overhead so picking 30deg will be on the cards for us.
this morning finds us 18NM from the pass between Matuku and Toyata leaving us 163NM from Savu Savu we have been motoring since about lunchtime yesterday as the wind has moved on without us the sun is shining in under a blanket of cloud that is dropping light rain from time to time we are hoping that wind will return at some point
the sun is rising on what looks to be a very nice day as we motor sail toward Fiji the wind fell away around 2400hrs so are making use of the iron sail.
The wind has dropped back from the 25 plus range to a sedate 15/16 time to Say our goodbyes to sth Minerva today and the folk that are in here it has been fun the fish are tasty along with the cray certainly will call in here again if we pass this way again. Savu Savu here we come reckon Wed
Our time at sth minerva in coming to a end with plans to move onto SavuSavu tomorrow , Glad that we made it to here ,fascinating place and yes I would return, less wind would make getting around to the prime snorkeling spots
What a ideal spot to take a break and catch up on things and fellow yachties
We made it South Minerva last Night now caught up on the sleep and enjoying this place looking forward to exploring
Making good progress toward Minerva with ETA around 2200hrs was hoping to make sth before dark but not counting on it. My repair seems to be ok so we have a motor again. enjoying the sailing conditions
should make Minerva wed Morning, had to do a repair on the exhaust accumulator tank as it sprung a leak going to refit today providing the repair is a success we carry on as planned otherwise it is on to Savu Savu.
made pretty good progress in the last 24hrs now 381 from Minerva nice morning clear skys enjoying the passage
A quite last 24 hrs except for the motor as we crawled our way toward the wind which was above us now at last have enough to shut the motor down we are 525 away from Minerva and should make better progress
Day one finds us 120NM off the coast and 665 from minerva we had a starry night now the odd rainy looking cloud
We are checking out today and making tracks towards the warmth. Intend on stopping at Minerva on the way to Fiji ( Savu Savu)
Good morning, Pilgrim is in Opua awaiting departure to places warmer, looking at Thurs day departure at this time enroute to Fiji via Minerva.
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