Phil May and Andrea Twigg
Sun 6 May 2012 19:51
16:42.8S 151:02.4W
Huahine is one of the less well-known of the Society islands, between Moorea  and Bora Bora.  We are anchored at the town of Fare on the western side.
Huahine is actually made up of two islands joined by a bridge.  Yesterday we went on a long dinghy ride to visit a pearl farm on the eastern side, which was a 10 mile trip inside the reef, cutting through the gap between the islands. 
There are dinghy channel markers in the shallow areas to show you how to get through, which consist of a line of poles concreted into the coral.   There are just a couple of problems with the markers.
  • Firstly it is not always obvious which side of the markers you are supposed to pass.  Sometimes you see the reef on one side and deep water on the other, but at other times it looks equally shallow on both sides of the poles and you have to proceed with caution until you get clear evidence (ie nearly hitting a lump of coral) which side you should be on. 
  • The other problem is that, while the poles mark the deepest route through, it does not necessarily mean it is deep enough for a rib carrying six people.  At one point the outboard grounded (fortunately on a sandbank) and we had to raise it for a while to get across. 
Anyway, we made it there and back without incident and everyone got their pearls.
Today we wanted to go on a tour of a vanilla plantation, but there is a cruise ship in and so the tours are all booked up.