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Mistral of Portsmouth - Rangiroa

Wow … we have loved this Atoll. When we arrived we had a day of continuous rain and cloud but from there on, aside from passing tropical showers, the sun was shining, the sky was true blue and the sea a myriad of greens, aquamarine, turquoise and a deep blue. 

I joined up with Fiona from S/Y Matilda and we did 2 dives through the pass … drifting through the coral with the current we saw shoals of barracuda, a hammerhead, a massive Napoleon Wrasse, glorious reef fish and dolphins ‘holding hands’ - completely magical. We found Relais de Josephine … a small local bar and restaurant looking out over the pass where we could watch sharks and dolphins whilst having coffee or cocktails - my favourite place. We biked our way around the atoll and discovered ‘Pearly’ - a little hut owned by a local expert in the black pearls farmed here. Shopping essential! We splashed out on a super dinner at the Kia Ora resort with Fiona, Matt and the owners of S/Y Orpheus, Tristan & John - another fun evening with plenty of sailing stories … everyone has them! We hooked up with S/Y Misty, Cacique IV and Enalia for drinks - lovely social and good to get to know our fellow Arc compatriots better. We have had a holiday from a holiday and I am feeling like a new woman!

We did a couple of jobs … once again into the ocean to clean the hull - it’s unbelievable how dirty the waterline becomes and it’s hard work to scrape off barnacles and seaweed - definitely becoming more OCD about the cleanliness of the boat as we go on! James is bringing out a piece of kit that will allow me to dive a few metres below the boat for 30 minutes at a time … I will be able to clean the whole hull when that arrives. Sad to say I am excited to get the kit! We have a big list of jobs for a marina when we reach Tahiti in a week or so … many of them checking things out so we know if anything is looking like breaking but also work to make sure all is well for the next few thousand miles of sailing. 

In the meantime, we are moving on … our next Atoll is Tikihau. 40 miles away, Jacque Cousteau claimed it was the most beautiful Atoll in the Tuamotu’s … we shall see … Rangiroa will be hard to beat. We left at 7.15am and went through the pass at low tide. A 3 knot current pushed us up to 9 knots and there was some chop in the water as the atoll water raced out to the ocean through the narrow pass … we made it safely and should arrive in time for high tide and slack water through the Tikihau pass … never a dull moment!


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