Miss one turn, go back twenty miles

Position: 27 30.35 S 153 21.55 E
At anchor, Horseshoe Bay, Peel Island
Wind: Nor’ nor’ east F4 moderate breeze
Weather: sunny, mild
Day’s run: 25 Nm

Tomorrow we will be rendezvousing with a sailing friend, our paths having
last crossed in Tonga, two years back now. I was hoping we might meet at
the Tangalooma anchorage but, due to the northerlies that were forecast for
this afternoon and tomorrow, Chris, who has a great deal more local
knowledge than I, recommended Peel Island as a much better anchorage. So
today we back tracked some twenty odd miles.

Before getting underway however, as there was no wind in the morning, I took
the opportunity to go for a swim in the crystal clear waters to give the
propeller a much needed clean. I knew the prop was fouled because we were
losing a lot of horsepower, with the engine only getting up to 2200 rpm at
full throttle. When I dove on the prop I was surprised we were even getting
this, as it was thick with some very tenacious barnacles, and it took me a
good hour to scrape it all reasonably clean. I am pleased to say I managed
to do so without getting any barnacle scratches, as they tend to take a
while to heal.

By the time the prop cleaning was finished, it was a little after midday and
the wind had started to pick up from the north, so we soon had the anchor
up, sailing from anchor despite the clean prop, and running before the
breeze, wing on wing, retracing our steps back to the southern end of the
bay.

And it has been a very pleasant sail, but, with the late start, we did not
get to anchor here in Horseshoe Bay until seven o’clock. I think it is a
good bet that this is a good place to be as when I rounded the south west
point of the island the bay was lit up with numerous anchor lights. Having
picked a spot where the lights we not quite so dense, it will be interesting
to see where we have fetched up tomorrow when the sun rises and I can see
what’s what.

I can feel an early night tonight coming on, as with the prop cleaning and
the late arrival to anchorage it has been a rather long day.

All is well.