Duplicat's Diary

Moving steadily north
by Rick at 03:07:13, 2019-09-08 (day 1953)

After a morning fixing an issue with the furling boom (mostly David and Gavin in problem solving mode), we left Ambrym whilst we still had wind. Plenty of wind. More wind than we really wanted to test the mainsail fix in! Peaked at 27 knots in the gap between the islands of Ambrym and Pentecost.

Geniet Lewe stretched their legs and headed further north. We chose to stop a bit sooner. The anchorage on the chart said anchor in 10m of sand. We were still in 60m of water, 40m off the beach, which doesn’t work! Fortunately, we found a shelf a bit further north that we could actually anchor on. We spent a pleasant night there, and moved on early the next morning.

Under way, we sailed and motorsailed in the predicted light E winds until BANG, we got massive vibration. We quickly stopped the engine, and sailed on slowly until we got to our destination anchorage at Moon Cave. Once anchored, a quick duck dive and we could see the problem. Someone’s old fishing net...

Fortunately, easily resolved without resorting to cutting, but very annoying.

So we’re anchored in a nice spot, some wind off the land which is keeping us cool. Behind us is Aoba (also known as Ambae), the volcano which covered us in ash when we were on the north side of Fiji just over a year ago. It made a huge mess of us, and caused the island to be evacuated. Its rumbling away at level 2 at present, so we’re advised to give it a miss.

The next couple of days bring light winds, then they return from the S, going SE and strengthening. We’ll take the day of S to get to the Banks group of Vanuatu - an area highly recommended by all the cruisers that make it up there. Until then, we’ll meet the chief at the village here, arrange our visit to the Moon Cave (which is just 0.4nm away with a huge entrance we can see). Then we’ll work a bit further north ready to be in the ideal spot for jumping north.

Suprisingly enough, here in almost the middle of nowhere, we have a very good 4G signal! Maybe I’ll stream the Monza GP later... :)