Monday, July 10, 2023

Heading to Fiji from New Zealand

 Greetings from Marsden Cove, NZ.  We are checking out of the country and starting our sail to Fiji tomorrow am.  We left Riverside Drive Marina a little before noon so we could catch the noon opening of the Whangarei Bridge.










Our friends Ian, Ronnie, Ad, and Glen assisted us safely out of our slip, which was really appreciated because we had a mini squall move through.  So, I like to think we were baptized by New Zealand as we left.  We were also given a beautiful rainbow.







I made Lobster Bisque for our last meal before the passage with four crawfish tails.  🦞 



The passage is predicted to be 8 days long, so hopefully we will arrive before my cousin Eric arrives into Nadi on the 22nd.


The adventures begin again!


First Mate Kate






Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Half way there...

We are half way to Suwarrow. The passage from Raiatea to Suwarrow is 669 nm. We had good sailing the first day and night, but yesterday the wind was light and we turned on the motor. The wind is predicted to return this afternoon.

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Suwarrow

We are leaving French Polynesia and heading to New Zealand via Suwarrow, Niue then Tonga. Stay tuned...

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Saying Goodbyes

We are starting to have our “lasts” in French Polynesia. We had our last walk in the park in Tahiti, our last stay at Marina Papeete, our last visit to the Marche.
We did have a first, as we finally stayed in the anchorage at Marina Taina. That was a hoot! We got together with Birgit on Pitufa for dinner and happy hour with Shelly and Mike on Avatar, Jaye and Irwin on Windsome and Birgit on Pitufa.


We left Tahiti for Mo’orea today, as we need to start heading west. So, we left the island and our friends not knowing when we will meet them again. I felt so sad today as we left, like I did at the end of summer camp as a kid. The rainy and blustery weather masked my tears as we sailed on.



We were treated to a beautiful downwind sail almost all the way to the anchorage. The island of Mo’orea blocked the wind as we turned toward the anchorage.
We had a beautiful evening enjoying fresh ton rouge with asparagus and duck fat potatoes!
First Mate Kate

Sent from my iPhone

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Visit with Cousin Eric

We had such a blast with my cousin Eric! He flew down to Huahine the day before I did and we had a couple of weeks to explore French Polynesia. 






Mike’s brother had just spent two weeks on Pangaea and was now staying at a pension on Huahine, so we got to hang out together. We decided to rent scooters and tour the island.


Eric hadn’t ridden a scooter before but he was an instant pro.


We toured the local Marae and saw some fish traps in the river.


Greg and Mike exploring the Marae


Fish traps


We stopped at a little beach and relaxed after briefly stopping at a little art gallery by Melanie. She was working on this painting that I absolutely love !






We had a little boat ride to a Pearl Farm and got some pearls and pottery!




We heard that there are blue-eyed eels here, so we went exploring.
We tooled over to Avea Bay for lunch and the next day we brought the boat over to the bay to do some snorkeling. It is so beautiful!
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1TSNpWWaUvEUZaKey1cv4X8bAsu71qgqP
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1ZVtpeSI74fo1nC2yQNne8nED_Mnf4t_6
drove over to Huahine Iti and Avea Bay for lunch to complete the day.

The next day we sailed here and snorkeled before heading to Taha’a.

Taha’a

We sailed over to Taha’a just in time for sunset. It was so gorgeous!!
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=12UvOYj00s5mfuNy-si8Tu9QsgG3K_K44

Looking at Bora Bora

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1SgUTycghqmj51Kbi33cSHf0PV0PqM9Yi
The next day we went over to Pari Pari for some vanilla education and Rum tasting!
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1YZYrdd2CxYv5OMI4s4pVxdIWnzDO0hY2

They dry their vanilla slowly to optimize flavor and reduce mold growth.
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1PuKwmmwcJeKfGQ9aPHJw8f4U_FF0muek

The T Rhum is the award winning rum agricoles from Pari Pari. It is VERY strong! I like the vanilla rum and passion fruit rum, also.

Raiatea

We sailed over to Raiatea to do a little more exploration. We anchored at Taputapuatea to show Eric the mare there.
https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1l7HoDddl3VTfQ9kD20BARVt40GST2ywp



This octopus is the symbol for the connected South Pacific islands

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1cCQMHwXj1lQnH93QQ8ttKmmjOV4CWh38
We were able to attend the first night of the Heiva celebration in Raiatea.

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=157d94sZyu9H9TUj2Q9gtxhFZ-RpvTeXz

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=183FN7w5TFJBiftymYjODMd7iaLTS3s_o

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1A1LD9WpNVUNm-EAaVWBz99_V4fuoVZCG

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1pb6Lyb3TYmVVPXuzd21u8WgNmsS5pBV9

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1WPVYouMPxycrdcZ6P9KsE3GaQHwH2lSS

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1Go_fUZISoEJA2eyk0-a-BVFdt_0U8hqq



We had a lovely dinner on Eric’s final evening at the Raiate Lodge.

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1UogGQDnXZbrAUsK9ekls6KyzPAIAID9Z

The next day we took Eric to the airport by dinghy and waited with him for his flight. We decided to have a final Hinano together. . The next thing we knew -an agent from Air Tahiti came into the bar asking for Mr. Severson. Eric answered yes. They were waiting for him.

Awesome!

Please hurry back, Eric! We miss you already!

First Mate Kate







Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Leaving French Polynesia for Now

We have been preparing ourselves and the boat for the end of sailing this season. We will return to the boat next May/June. Last weekend we went back to snorkel in Thai’s and today we hiked Mt. Temehani in Raiatea.

We rode our bikes 3 miles to the trailhead and hiked 1400 vertical feet to get a gorgeous view of the lagoon, mountain and surrounding islands.  You can see Bora Bora in the distance.


Spring flowers abound on this hike!


It’s definitely spring here as everything is in bloom!


The ubiquitous red hibiscus flower provides protection from "evil spirits" in French Polynesia. The lagoon makes a pretty impressive background for this gorgeous flower.




Gorgeous wild orchid

That's all for now...

First Mate Kate

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Two weeks in the Leeward Islands: Jerelyn’s Visit


We had an amazing two weeks with Jerelyn on Pangaea. Jerelyn and I have known each other for over 30 years and she has known Mike for almost 10 of those. We are besties from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
We visited 4 islands in two weeks: Raiatea, Huahine, Bora Bora and Taha’a.  Each island had its own special story, but here are the highlights:
We picked up Jerelyn in our dinghy from the airport. As we were heading in her flight flew right over us and she saw us!

We sailed from Raiatea after doing a fuel and provision stop in Uturoa. We arrived in Fare mid-afternoon after a bit of a sporty sail and took the dinghy into town for a visit to the museum at the La Pita Village Hotel. We stayed for sundowners and dinner. It was a gorgeous night!


From Fare we headed to Avea Bay to wait out some weather and for Mike to get in some kiteboarding.

We did some great snorkeling in Avea Bay and decided it should be renamed Anenome Bay because of the rich supply of anenomes and anenome fish!
We sailed back to Raiatea for the evening and then on to Bora Bora the next morning. We had an amazing downwind sail all the way there, and a little boost of extra wind from a squall at the end (without getting wet!).

We spent the first day in Vaitape and did some provisioning and exploring. The next day we sailed to the southeast side of the island and stayed there for two lovely days.


We had some great snorkeling here in Bora Bora, including a drift dive off the reef that left me a little scraped and bruised (got pummeled by a couple big waves). Ouch.
The next day we decided to head back to the other side of Bora Bora and were able to get a mooring outside of the famous Bloody Mary’s.

Since we were in the neighborhood, we thought we ought to go for happy hour and dinner at Bloody Mary’s.


After a day of biking and exploring the shops in Bora Bora, we headed to Taha’a.

Every trip we take we buy matching souvenirs. This trip was a silk wrap with a Tahitian pearl from Tahia. The color is lagoon and very true to its name.

Jerelyn and I were both Hoofers at UW-Madison. Here we are showing our Badger pride with the Hoofers burgee.
Once again, we had a great sail! What made today special was a whale show just outside the pass. There were two sets of mama and calf humpbacks delighting the tourist boats. We saw the second set which was actually a mama and twins! The mama was in great spirits as we were treated to 6 breaches, a fin slap and a tail slap. It was amazing. No footage, sorry. No one dared to leave the experience to get a camera.

We arrived in Taha’a just before sunset. We sat down for a sundowner and out of the corner of my eye I saw something in the water right next to the boat. It was two manta rays! Minutes later we were visited by a hawksbill turtle! Very cool.

I woke up in the middle of the night and walked outside. The sky was clear with radiant stars and within minutes I had saw 4 shooting stars. We had some Luci lights on and I looked out in the water on the port side of the boat and the Manta Rays were swimming in th light right next to the boat. I was mesmerized by their dance. What a gift!
The next morning we did a snorkel of the coral gardens.


The gardens were beautiful! It was like snorkeling in an aquarium! Jerelyn saw an orange and brown octopus!
We set sail mid-day back to Raiatea. We had dinner reservations at the Raiatea Lodge with Kate and Alan (Itagime).
We took the dingy to dinner just in time for a spectacular sunset complete with dolphins swimming in the bay!




We returned Jerelyn to the Raiatea Airport in the dinghy for a full circle departure back to Papeete. We miss her already!
What a fabulous two weeks! Thank you, my friend!
First Mate Kate