Passage to Banda Neira - Day 2 - Arrival
Saturday 29th July 2017
Distance run: 86 nm
Total distance run: 203 nm
The weather continued to be sunny and dry with clear skies all day yesterday which made for pleasant sailing. We slowed down to about 4.5 knots overnight to time our arrival with the light this morning. We were expecting to meet fishing boats as we approached the Banda Islands, but there were none and the night passed by uneventfully.
As we rounded the top of the islands we stopped to take down the poles, and then motored the last couple of miles through the gap between Banda Neira and Gunung Api.
Approaching the channel, a dormant volcano shrouded in mist. Entering the channel through a gap between islets.
This chap was paddling his canoe across our path and seemed totally unbothered by 20 tons of yacht heading straight for him!
We steered around him and he gave us a big smile as he went on his way.
We drove around looking for somewhere to drop the anchor, but it was all very deep, so in the end we moored Med-style to the wall outside the hotel that was hosting the Rally. Without the bow thruster, which has packed up working again, it was very difficult to get the boat to go backwards in a straight line. Coupled with a misunderstanding between Skipper and Crew which led to the anchor coming up when it was meant to be going down, it took two attempts to get moored. Half an hour later, we were told we were too near the commercial dock where a huge ferry will be tying up tomorrow. So we had to up anchor and move further away. Eventually we were anchored with lines ashore, and looking forward to exploring the original Spice Island.