At Anchor, Pilot Bay, Mt Manganui

The Adventures of the Good Ship Equinox
Cate and Chris Galloway
Wed 29 Dec 2010 20:49

Position at 1600 NZDT 37.38.230S 176.10.457E

Hi all, this morning we evacuated the marina and moved out to anchor in the shadow of the Mount to enjoy the marine equivalent of free camping. The bay we are in is a very busy spot, with kayaks, jet skis, catamarans, people fishing from runabouts and people all over the calm beaches ("beached as, bro...."). The current here is very strong on the change of tide. The general atmosphere here is very mid-north coast NSW (Port Stephens, Port Macquarie, and Yamba) with a Fisherman's Island style container terminal thrown in. It's like having Caloundra with a container terminal off the end of the main street.

In the afternoon we climbed Mt Maunganui and enjoyed the views in both directions - spectacular. Then we took the "hard" track down to the surf beach on the seaward side of the spit that the mount stands on, and had a gelati (bribery lives!).

This evening we watched as a cruise ship (The "Dawn Princess") sailed at sunset, before settling down to a quiet night at anchor.

Looking at the weather it may be Saturday before we can attempt the passage to Gisborne. The guidebooks are all very "here be dragons" about the passage around East Cape and underline the need to make miles when the weather is favourable. Sounds like a challenge - as that great Kiwi Sir Ed Hillary said, "nothing ventured, nothing gained". We shall see....

Should have some Tauranga photos to put up in the next day or so.