Departed Whitianga

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Thu 26 Nov 2020 13:28
Things have gone pretty well according to plan with just the odd diversion.
The first was the engine not starting. I had changed a fuel filter a few
days ago and clearly had not fully bled the air out of the system. Once that
was done, we moved alongside the fuel dock to top up fuel. Twenty minutes
later, at 0620, we cast off the fuel dock lines and motored out of the
marina into the harbour channel and then out into the still foggy waters of
Buffalo Bay. Which was the other thing not planned for, namely no wind - the
forecast was for 20 knot north-westerlies. I figured the calm air was
likely due to the usual morning calm that often happens close to land,
decoupling I believe is the technical term, as well as being in the lee of
the land forming Mercury Bay.

It took a bit of motoring to find some wind but at 0800 we had sufficient to
set the headsails and stop the motor, making good a steady four knots. Since
then the wind has freshened some more with about eighteen knots from the
NNW. We have a reef in the mainsail and are scooting along at a comfortable
seven knots.

Looking ahead, I think it is unlikely that we will make it to Gisborne, or
indeed Tolaga Bay, before the southerly change arrives tomorrow, so will
probably seek shelter somewhere along the north coast of East Cape to wait
for more favourable winds. Hicks Bay looks promising.

All is well.