Blog 59. Saturday 25 June. Savusavu. 16.46.67S 179.20.16E

David Batten
Thu 30 Jun 2016 03:45
Monday, 20 June. A dull morning with very little wind for the first couple of hours, so no drama going out of the pass. Then by 11.00 it was 2 reefs in the main and going 10 knots and Anthony on the helm really enjoying himself when a rogue wave broke over the boat, pouring salt water down the hatches that were on vent. Anthony was unaware, so got a dressing down by the skipper's wife when he failed to take the matter seriously! Hatches closed, water mopped up and a fast but rough sail to Point Reef before turning inside the reef and into the sheltered waters behind it and on up to Nakama Creek in time for a late lunch. Nakama Creek was full of yachts, devoid of all beacons and quite narrow. We picked up a mooring, courtesy of Copra Shed Marina as recommended by WARC, very close to another buoy that promptly disappeared under Alcedo's hull. No other moorings available, so put on the waiting list for a better one. In fact, CSM moorings with one or two exceptions are really only suitable for 45' or less, so Waitui Moorings may be a better bet for big boats and they are just as helpful. We did move onto Wishanger's mooring the day after, which was fine and very handy for the dock.

We had a great time in Savusavu and stayed until this morning, at least a day longer than planned, in part because shopping for axes, hammers, nails, cooking pots, especially the cooking pots, and electrical items on the WARC list for items needed in Tanner, Vanuatu, took a very long time. We had to visit every hardware store and many other shops of highly variable stock, including Paully's Fashions to get what we wanted. Big axes were clearly in demand after the cyclone. Plus there is an wonderful daily market (except Sundays) and the supermarkets also require investigation as you never know which will have fresh milk or coffee or olive oil or even drinking chocolate. The rough and ready looking one opposite the up market IGA was actually excellent. We were also waiting for one of the alternators which was with an alternator doctor, undergoing open reduction and internal fixation and which was always going to be ready for discharge tomorrow. Plus we were having a great social and eating out time, with a catchup with Wishanger, Paradise Found and Take Off who left the day after we arrived and then Andy and Emma from Pentagram, who have been a huge help with advice on Fiji in general and collecting our alternator (we hope!). This was eventually announced ready for discharge after we had left Copra Marina this morning and after we were told it still needed further treatment, so expect it Monday.

We have met some great non WARC yachties, including Kevin who was most helpful about cruising the Yasawa Islands and Yadua, our next target and the Skipper has even met the famous Curley, who is the accepted expert on sailing in Fiji except for the Yasawa Islands. He did give us a copy of the Moorings guide, which has some useful advice and way points not we have used his way points for this area. We have also caught up with Crystal and Solo and then Zoom, who came in yesterday. They very kindly gave us some of their catch, a huge Wahoo and a Mahi Mahi, plus a Dorado so they must have eaten a lot of fish lately.

So this morning we decided we must at least anchor off the beach by the Point Reef so we are ready for an early get away tomorrow, when the plan is to stop in Bua Bay, a convenient day's sail ,some 52nm away, leaving us only 22nm to Yadua the following day. Having anchored, snorkelled and showered, Skipper started the generator and water maker, only to find that the latter refused to work. It worked yesterday. Further investigation showed a melted fuse housing in the control box and a nasty smell of hot components. Thank heavens it did refuse to work, or we could have had a fire on our hands. We do have generous water tanks, but the Skipper doesn't like carting too much water around, so with one and a half tanks out of four, we all agreed to go for an economy drive and continue heading for the Yasawa Islands, after sending an email to the supplier with a photograph of the offending part. Here's hoping we can get a part to Musket Cove in time!

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