Trip to Kauehi in Tuamotus
We had to motor-sail the last 2 days to the Tuamotus with the wind mainly between 0 – 8 knots, however late on Wednesday night we started to get frequent rainstorms and the wind would go from 5kn to 25kn and the rain was torrential. This continued all the way to Kauehi, where we arrived at 9.0am.
We had timed our arrival to get there at low water and slack tide. This time was predicted both on the Navionics charts and a spreadsheet we had acquired, which was based on US government data. We found however that once we were in the fairly narrow passage that we had 4 knots of tide against us, we were doing over 6 knots through the water, but just making 2.2 knots over the ground. It is a good job we have a powerful engine!
The white water we had to motor through at the entrance to Kauehi.
Once we were inside the lagoon it was straight forward to cross the lagoon and anchor near the village, tucked in between reefs, which gives good shelter from waves, when the wind is strong. Our friends Sean & Sabine (Chevaldy) were already there as they had arrived on Wednesday and entered at 1200 and had 4 knots of tide with them!! It is clear the NOA and Navionics tidal data is out, we think by about an hour, but we will know more when we go out.
The skies have been very overcast since we arrived, which is a bit disappointing as the scenery would otherwise be stunning, but we plan to be in the Tuamotus for 6-8 weeks, so we will just have to be patient.
Today we took a trip ashore and explored the village, the photos below set the scene.
The village church, which is under renovation.
The chandeliers in the church are made of shells and are real works of art.
A colourful Shrine which was at the side of the road.
Coconuts being dried, before being melted to make coconut oil.
Some old hanging ropes used for growing the oysters in their black pearl farms. The ropes are made of thin plastic strips. The black pearls are a key source of revenue to the small atolls – there are only 350 people on Kauehi.
Although the Atoll is is quite small, only a few miles across, it has a few very good concrete roads.
One of the many crabs, Susan thinks they are coconut crabs.
Sitting at the post office using the internet. We can actually pick up the signal from our boat using our WIFI booster, it is about ¾ a mile from us to the PO, so we are very pleased with the booster system performance.
The following photos are from Oa Pou, where we stopped on the way to the Tuamotus.
Arriving at Oa Pou and its dramatic pinnacles.
The impressive church in Oa Pou village.
The woodwork and carvings are impressive.
The view from the harbour anchorage on Oa Pou.