Hermit Islands.


pos 1:31.05S 145:4.82E
Carola Bay, Luf

We left Wewak in the afternoon of Saturday the 5th of december.
It was nice to be at sea again. We had a nice sail in the night. On Sunday morning we had to start the engine to make enough speed to get us in before dark. The passage was about 170 NM. We worked on the Dinghy on deck to try and patch up all the holes. Luckily I had some big patches and fresh glue. We managed to get the Dinghy usable if we pump it once a day.
When we got near to the Hermit Islands but still had a few miles to go to the entrance of the reef we saw a Humpback whale jump up in the air and land with a big splash.
We anchored in Carola Bay before dark and was directed to a good anchoring spot by Bob who met us in his dugout canoe.
Monday the 7th we took it easy with snorkeling and a visit to the village where we were guided arond by Bob. We also met a Spanish,German,French family in a cat called Lumbaz. They had 4 children between 5 and 12. 3 girls and one boy. They were all soon playing in the water with the local kids.
Tuesday the 8th. We took the boat to a pass between to Islands where we were told we could see Manta Reys feeding. We did not find any Mantas but had some nice snorkeling. When we got back to the anchoridge outside the village, we waived god bye to Lumbaz that left for Indonesia. In the afternoon Jonathan and Charlotta started bartering with the locals. It started when they took some empty bottles in to ask if anybody wanted them. They soon came back with 3 big Papayas and requests for other bits and pieces. I think they went back and forth to the beach. We traded T-shirts, Coloring pens, Fish hooks and line, Childrens clothes for Papaya, Pinapples, Bananas and Coconuts. We soon had as much as we could eat.
Wedensday the 9th we waved good bye to the friendly village and left for Palau. On the way we passed the Manta place and found Lumbaz anchored there. Even better they had found the Mantas. We were soon anchored and swimming among them. There was four of them and they swam under us feeding. Amazing animals about 3 meters across.We could dive down and stroke their soft skin.
After a while we took off again for Palau. I good end to our stay in PNG.

All is well again,
Lars and Crew

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