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14/07/2014

Firefly - Experiences on Beqa

Firefly was anchored in Vaga Bay on Beqa for just 2 days but during this time we had some interesting experiences. In the previous posting we described the Sevusevu ceremony at Neiseuseu Village and Rosy's day of teaching at the adjacent Nacema Village.While Rosy was teaching Paul was invited by Seroe, the villager who had clearly been appointed too look after us, to walk to Nacema Village. At low tide it was possible to walk along the beautiful beach out around the headland, passing a couple of small resorts. Throughout Fiji we have seen a lot of idyllic holiday locations but there often seems to be very low occupancy - possibly as there are so many. These were no different with just one Aussie couple staying at the first and no guests visible at all at the second. A '5 star' resort on. read more...


14/07/2014

Jennie B - ARC Baltic - Bornholm to Visby, Gotland

After being wind bound, too much of it from the wrong direction, we finally set off towards Visby at 0400 on Sunday 13th July.We were in a group that were almost the last to leave as we waited for the wind to go westerly andcarry us on our way.It went west with a vengeance and we had a rollicking down wind sail towards the south end of Oland.Several boats, including us, decided to go up the Kalmar Sound as the sea would be flatter in there - false hope.Eventually the seas and wind did calm down as we neared Kalmar.We stopped for a few hours in Kalmar to meet up with yacht Jubilare and to get some sleep and set off again this morning aiming to reach Visby this evening to join the rest of the fleet. Paul & Elaine. read more...


13/07/2014

American Spirit II - Day 188; Work Day in Efate, Vanuatu; Saturday, July 12, 2014

As a follow up to our visit to the volcano in Tanna, Vanuatu on Wednesday, July 9; the name of the volcano is Yasur. I neglected to mention that in the July 9 log. Yasur is one of twelve volcanoes in Vanuatu. Six of these volcanoes are 'aerial' and the rest 'submarine.' The volcano is 365 meters high (1,423 feet). 'The Yasur volcano is one of the most accessible and certainly the most spectacular volcano on the planet,' so says Michel Massat in his book The Yasur Volcano. What makes Yasur so unique is that you can stand at the lip and top of the crater; the volcanic activity is a mere 200 - 300 yards away; and the guttural, rhythmic, and bone penetrating sound that the volcano makes is perhaps its most outstanding feature. Though usually harmless, a tourist was killed by a falling rock. read more...


13/07/2014

Santa Maria - Leaving the ARC Baltic fleet

Having seen every part of Bornholm, looking at the weather forecast, knowing that we would belong to the last boats, when the fleet finally would leave harbor, we were eager to leave Rønne.Altogether it was clear that we would leave Rønne Friday morning, another important aspect, was the World Cup final in Rio on Sunday. Thus we were looking for a harbor with flat screen on Sunday evening. The passage was dominated by sunny weather and strong winds, and as we reached the right longitude, we went straight north and arrived Hanö in the loveliest sunset, the whole crew was enjoying the passage, we were pleased to meet Salt and buoyed alongside.06:20 we left direction east around 15:00 the rain set in, the wind was still frisk which made up for Neptune's change of mood, for a while. At 21:45. read more...


Santa Maria - Leaving the ARC Baltic fleet
Santa Maria - Leaving the ARC Baltic fleet
12/07/2014

Firefly - Beqa and Kaduga

Its Sunday 13th July and Firefly is anchored off Yanuca Island within the Beqa Lagoon - its beautiful, but this was not our intended destination.A few days back Rosy had her 7th consecutive day of surfing near Tavarua Island. Having spent a rolly night anchored there we were up early and as we motored towards Cloudbreak we spotted a whale, swimming in the direction of the break - it was blowing and visible but we did not get close enough to identify it - however, the day before Humpbacks had been seen by other boats. There was no wind and Cloudbreak looked stunning, busy with surfers and a flotilla of small boats, milling just outside the waves that had bought the surfers out to the reef. After a couple of hours we picked Rosy up in the dinghy and started our planned passage to the Lau. read more...


12/07/2014

Zoonie - Aida and the not so Old Man of The Sea

Aida was born on the island but then her parents moved to Boston, USA whereher father learned English at the University and worked in the maintenance dept.before setting up a fish market with a friend.   He returned to the island and started a restaurant in Maia, another ribbonsettlement facing the east Atlantic. His wife hoped they might retire and takeit easy but in fact they ended up working even harder and ran the popularrestaurant on well water and generator electricity.   Aida’s father’s nickname was Il Grota so that is what he called his prideand joy. He loved to create his own dishes and Aida was pleased to serve us twobowls of his famous fish soup. He bought his fish early in the morning, as doesAida today, from the local fishermen who would later come and have their. read more...


Till - Bornholm - Departure for Visby
Till - Bornholm - Departure for Visby
Till - Bornholm - Watching the shipping forecast
Till - Bornholm - Watching the shipping forecast
Till - Bornholm - The port of Gudhjem is closed
Till - Bornholm - The port of Gudhjem is closed
Till - Bornholm - Fishing boat escorted by seagulls
Till - Bornholm - Fishing boat escorted by seagulls
Till - Bornholm - ARC flags in the Southern Harbour
Till - Bornholm - ARC flags in the Southern Harbour
Till - Bornholm - Port entrance of Rönne at 5:30 am
Till - Bornholm - Port entrance of Rönne at 5:30 am
12/07/2014

Zoonie - Zoonie in Santa Maria - 'car' day 1

The Azores are part of the Atlantic Ridge mountains that extend 10,000miles down from north to south and are twice as wide as the Andes. The centralpart rises 5000 – 10,000 feet above the seafloor with another mile to go abovethe summits to reach sea-level. The peaks that do reach the vision of marinersform island groups including the Azores, the Rocks of St Paul, Ascension Island,Tristan da Cunha, Gough and Bouvet. In places if you stepped more than a fewfeet from the shores you would be lost in a half mile depth of water!   While Pico island, with its same named peak, rises 27,000 feet above theocean floor, its upper 7000-8000 feet showing and is the highest in the group,Santa Maria can boast the oldest town. Only two weeks after its civicinauguration in 1460  privateers from. read more...


Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
24/07/2014

Jumbuck - ARC Baltic - St Petersburg

Sitting in Jumbucks cockpit typing this after midnight in what the Russians call one of their 'white nights', and trying to sum up my impressions of this city and it's peoples.We've just returned from seeing Swan Lake performed by the Bolshoi Ballet at the small theatre in the Hermitage, and had earlier today done a tour guided trip to several famous landmarks.The tour was amazing. The ballet was brilliant. Super dancers and superb musicians set in a venue that would be hard to top. The whole city is stacked with so many museums, palaces, churches one could easily loose a month visiting them all. If you survived that long.Crazy drivers with scant regard for pedestrians in a mix of old dented Ladas and plush shiny Bentleys are probably the greater risk, but it's hard not to want to wander. read more...


Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
Zoonie - Latest Photos, blog to follow
11/07/2014

Celebrate - Active Volcano Tour at Sunset & Village Welcome in Tanna, Vanuatu!!

WOW!! Standing at the rim of an active volcano is something not to be missed!!Adrenaline rushes in you as the Mount Yasur cauldron spews up glowing lumps of lava at sunset from two places.A stunningly beautiful sight!! A lovely, lovely welcome from the villagers complete with coconut milk served in coconuts, gifts for us made out of intricately woven leaves and grasses for hats, handbags, and sachels holding fruits & flowers.Also, there was singing & dancing and a tasty buffet dinner.We felt so warmly welcomed!!Next:Port Vila, VanuatuCathy. read more...


11/07/2014

Longbow of Argyll - Baltic log 3 - a Bornholm interlude

We have spent 4 days and 4 nights on Bornholm, one day longer than expected due to strong winds in exactly the wrong direction. But hopefully tomorrow (Saturday) we will be on our way, with gallons of ginger tea at the ready to combat the bouncy waves.Bornholm is a fabulous holiday destination with plenty to keep the whole crew happy: stunning white sand beaches with clear blue water, shopping of all types, 1 billion years of rock history, some Bronze Age human history,a fabulous art museum, an extremely knowledgeable coach driver called Kim, great bakeries and coconut ice cream to die for.Due to the wind direction we have been based at the main harbour in Ronne, next to the ferry terminal, rather than in the much smaller, picturesque harbour at Svaneke. However having seen the crush of. read more...


11/07/2014

Hanse Sailor - Log Day 5 - Chores and farewells

After a day off touring Bornholm and the north western harbour villages, we knuckled down to practise our splicing - ending up with all sorts of odd shaped bits of rope in the cockpit. More usefully, some springers were completed and the dinghy hoist shackle ropes finished.With the dinghy having to be lowered anyway, the boys took the engine for a spin around the harbour before our next leg. In theory we should be heading off to Visby in Gotland today, but that's been delayed because of the easterlies. And finally it's arrivederci to Mario, who's been with Andy through the launch, set up and shakedown of Hanse Sailor. We all enjoyed his farewell drinks last night, and the "Working on a Dream" team stopping by. Mario headed off this morning to catch the midday ferry to Malmo. Buon. read more...


Hanse Sailor - Log Day 5 - Chores and farewells
Hanse Sailor - Log Day 5 - Chores and farewells
11/07/2014

American Spirit II - Day 187; Abseiling (almost) Free Fall at Mele Cascades Waterfalls; Friday, July 11, 2014

Up at 7:00 AM to go rappelling at the Mele Cascades waterfalls. Coffee and breakfast at 8:00 AM. Scrambled eggs, lamb breakfast sausage and fruit cocktail. Chet washed the dishes, as he's done every day since joining the crew. Joel and I dropped off our laundry at 8:30 AM at the marina office. We were promised to have it back by 4:00 PM today. At 8:55 AM we boarded a van sent to pick us up for the waterfall excursion. Five minutes later I realized that we were in the wrong van. The driver took us back and a few minutes later the correct van picked us up. It seems everyone in Port Vila has a van and act as taxi drivers even though they don't have a taxi sign on the top of their vehicle. In the van were 11 other persons going on the same tour as us - all from Australia. We arrived at the. read more...


11/07/2014

Aislig Bheag - 7th July – 10th July Lagos, Portugal to Quinta De Lorde, Madeira

John and I spent seven days in Lagos catching up in boat work and even some relaxation!  Megan and Tony left for home on the 2nd July early in the morning with plans to join us again later at some point inthe trip. Megan has probably clocked up more nautical miles in her first passage in the past two weeks than many sailors have in a life time!  We all agreed that she is an absolute natural sailor and a great crew member. The story of the toilet seat was not over yet.  We managed to order one in the Chandlery in Lagos on Thursday and paid the carriage for a next day delivery.  We had moved to anchor in Portimao a few miles along the coastand returned to collect it on Saturday to find them closed at lunch time so we had to delay our departure until the Monday morning. read more...


11/07/2014

American Spirit II - Day 186; Sailing to and Arrival at Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu; Thursday, July 10, 2014

At 12:15 AM I rolled up the mainsail because the wind was on the nose and the sail was flapping. Joel was on watch from 12:30 AM to 3:00 AM. During his watch he saw one boat, which was the only vessel we'd see the entire 18 hour passage. And while passing by the island of Erromango to our east during his shift, we encountered a 2 knot head current which reduced our boat speed to 5.5 knots. Chet came on watch from 3:00 AM to 6:00 AM. I relieved Chet early at 5:45 AM. The sky was overcast, again. The boat was rocking 20 degrees left and right due to the waves. The island of Erromango was still visible off the starboard, aft quarter. Very mountainous. The seas were 3-4 feet; the wind was 13/14 knots and our boat speed 7.8 knots. It looked like rain was a good possibility. At 6:23 AM a. read more...


31/07/2014

Jumbuck - ARC Baltic Leg 6 - St Petersburg Russia to Helsinki Finland

We slid out of the Central River Yacht Club at 0800 Sunday, one of the first boats to stagger our departure on the voyage back westward to Finland.Wending out way out of the Neva River, and across the deep water channels towards Kronstadts gateway out to the Gulf of Finland, the light early morning breeze felt really fresh and despite again setting sail under blazing sun, it was nicely cooler than it had ever felt in St Petersburg.Clearing out at Kronstadt involves a visit to the customs police in their office upstairs, completion of a declaration that we were exporting our boat from Russia along with other exit documents, then a visit to the boat by two immigration officers who checked every locker, even the engine, before they too wanted another declaration signed stating we were not. read more...



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