Our last full day before arriving at New Caledonia
and, wouldn't you know it, we have an easterly trade wind blowing at 12-13
knots. We are now just 54NM from Noumea at 2.30pm and will slow the boat down
soon so as to arrive after dawn tomorrow. We are just sailing with the genoa and
going a little too fast so will reef it down for a very slow overnight sail. The
good thing is we have a clear day and are approaching with the help of the moon,
which is getting close full. We will be very careful not to get too
close to the fringing reef as I do not have the chartplotter card to New
The wind finally started to blow late yesterday and
by late afternoon was at its current strength.
Towards dark yesterday a ship appeared on the
horizion heading north. The AIS had it as the "Cape Moreton" and bound for South
Korea. I gave them a call on the radio to ask if they had the exact coordinates
for Recif [reef] Durant further to our west. We had it on our charts but I
was keen to know its exact position. The guy I spoke to [??captain] could
not have been more helpful. He asked me to stay on station until he had a chance
to check, then came back to me within a few minutes with the details. He asked
me a few questions about where we were headed and we chatted on for some time.
He asked if we were having any problems with the boat and offered to head back
to assist if required. I said we were fine and thanked them for their assistance
and they then slowly disappeared over the horizon. This is the second time
now we have had very positive responses to contact with commercial
Over the next 24 hours we need to eat or cook all
of our remaining fresh food so as to avoid it being taken by the agriculture
officials in Noumea. Not that there is a whole lot left anyway. If there is one
thing about 18 year olds - they can eat!!
I will try to send a short blog after our arrival
tomorrow but customs/immagration are often good for burning up hours of time on
the first day entering a port.