position S16 49.944 W151 22.026
Ocean Rival Journey Log
Adam Power Diana Power
Sun 20 May 2018 07:18
We left Morea setting a course for Raiatea on Friday morning in no hurry knowing that the 100 miles or so would take us less than 24 hrs and we didn't wan't to arrive in the dark. Unfortunately we made rapid progress with well reefed twin jobs pulling us along at 6-7knots with the 20Kn easterly wind. So my careless planning resulted in a night arrival with the wind rising, clouds scudding and rain showers adding to our sense of persecution. The 1st 2 passes were unlit and while the satellite navigation has proved fairly accurate I declined to rely on that alone to avoid ending up on the reef. The third near the main town had nice leading lights which took us easily through the pass with no sense of surf proximity. Finding an anchorage in the dark proved more challenging and we settled on a designated area which a couple of already anchored boats suggested would be O.K I dropped the anchor in 15m depth and paid out nearly all my 60m of chain in the strong wind.
We slept in late in the morning and I was surprised to look out of the window and see a little island about 10m to starboard. We had managed to anchor right on the edge of the coral fringe and just escaped grounding on a coral head. Fortnately the wind didn't change in the night or we would have been on the beach. Taking up the anchor was nervy as we pulled right up to the coral before breaking out and making a quick exit stage right.
We had a look at the little marina but the few spaces looked uninviting and so we moved onto the town wharf for some shopping. I didn't like to leave the boat unattended against the concrete wharf with the strong wind threatening to burst the fenders and so let Diana shop while I fiddled with my alternator wiring.
The guide book suggested that the most essential visitor attraction on Raiatea is an important Polynesian Moree site near the souther tip. Hence we motored back down inside the reef to a bay that we estimated was within dinghy reach of the Moree. After a long wet dinghy ride in choppy water we asked some-one for directions and discovered we had moored in competely the wrong bay. Hence back to the boat and we are now moored in another bay 4 miles further south that should give access the the Moree in the morning.
My list of items working has gone up since we returned to rescue Ocean Rival from the moisture laden Baie Phaeton but several things have also been added to the list of items not working. The big ones are the alternator (again!),the Satelllite receiver (again!) and the leaking water tank. I have mangaed to disrupt the wiring that the electrico improvised in the Galapagos when I replaced the ignition swith. I will have to try some different variations of connections to see if I can get it working. So far we have had anough sun and wind to keep us going but sooner or later the alternator will be needed. The satellite receiver tested fine at home with 4 green lights but on board I get the same flashing red lights that I had before. Maybe the cable gets damaged threading through the tight holes in partitions. I have no further thoughts regarding the water tank other than still feeling daunted. The forward tank appears to be O.K. (touch wood).