Heading North - 35:33.6S, 174:29.7E
Our plan to leave Whangarei at the weekend didn’t quite materialise, and as the weather turned wet and windy on Sunday we were happy to be in town, where Sarah put the finishing touches (curtains and cushions) to the after cabin. We fitted in an enjoyable walk to Whangarei Falls on Saturday – and were surprised to have the picnic site to ourselves.
The pleasant walking trail along the river to Whangarei Falls
Where is everyone?
We finally left the marina after lunch on Monday and motored down the river in the last of the strong winds to anchor once more in Parua Bay then, this morning, we left the Hatea River behind and headed north. Whangarei has been a pleasant place to be based (apart from the long trip down the river to go anywhere) but it feels good to be moving on.
The wind was variable and mostly light today and we had to do a fair bit of motoring, but we managed 3 hours sailing as well. We investigated an anchorage in Matapouri Bay which looked really nice but there was a lot of swell and the surf was breaking on the beach, so we carried on round the next headland to Woolley’s Bay for a bit more protection. There is still some swell and we will have to go round stopping everything banging and rolling before bed, then we will be gently rocked to sleep.
Baches (holiday homes or beach houses) nestle under the hills at Woolley Bay
As we made our final approach to the anchorage we were visited by 4 dolphins who followed us in and watched us drop anchor then treated us to an amazing show of acrobatics as they leapt out of the water alongside us. With the floor show over, we settled down with a cup of tea and to listen to the birds – a very different sound to the UK which, as much as anything else, tells us we are on the other side of the world.
Our escort into the bay
The tree-lined cliffs are full of birdsong
The Marine Traffic website this afternoon showed the exodus of yachts heading out of the Bay of Islands for Fiji – we hope to follow the next time the weather is right.
The pink shapes are yachts – all heading north east towards Fiji and Tonga
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