The 1,300-mile passage from Vanuatu to Cairns, Australia took us nearly six days, but was one of our most comfortable and uneventful crossings to date. Seas were 2.5 meters for the first couple of days, but all well aft of our beam, making for decent surfing conditions. We hit 15 knots with regularity, and had […]Read More Australia – The Short Version
Our first week was spent in Port Vila, making reconnaissance and loading up. The three of us (Brian and Sue of British sailboat Darramy, Brian and Sandie of American sailboat Persephone, and ourselves) were impatient to get out to the islands, but the groundwork was important. We met with what seemed like everybody: World Health Organization (WHO,) […]Read More Buffalo Nickel in Vanuatu
In this second of three posts about our time spent helping with cyclone relief efforts in the Shepherd Islands of Vanuatu, I’m going to get on a bit of a soapbox about offering assistance in the event of a large-scale disaster: specifically, things one can do to be most, and least, helpful to a disaster […]Read More On Giving Well
The second week of March this year found us avidly following developing weather in the South Pacific from the comfort of our cozy Seattle digs. For the cyclone season, we had left Buffalo Nickel once again hauled out into a protective ‘pit’ in Vuda Point Marina, Fiji, while we visited the States. An intense tropical […]Read More Steaming West from Fiji. But Not Without the Persian Fetta!
Down to just the two of us, having left Jeff and Julie in Vanua Balavu in the northern Lau to make their gradual way back to the States. The passage to Fulaga (foo-LONG-ah) in the southern Lau was a short overnight. When entering and exiting via reef passes, as this trip entailed at both ends, […]Read More Fulaga, and the Little Dive Compressor that Couldn’t
Our last anchorage before bidding Jeff and Julie a sad farewell was the small island and village of Susui. Though we spent only 4 or 5 nights here, we all fell rapidly in love with the place. We really clicked with Jacob, the kind, quiet man who met us when we came ashore and escorted […]Read More Susui Island, the Color Pink, and Hemingway
From Viani Bay, we made our way southeast to the island of Vanua Balavu (VAH-noo-ah bah-LAH-voo) in the northern Lau group. The Lau group is the easternmost group of islands in Fiji, reportedly the least visited islands in the South Pacific. This is in large part because (as related to us by one of the […]Read More Vanua Balavu, and Thoughts on Cruising Under Power in Various Boats
While underway on the calm inter island passage between Suva and Savusavu, Jeff encouraged Stan to fiddle with our speed and interrogate its effect on fuel consumption, engine load, etc. We have lots of data at our fingertips from our Maretron monitoring system, which can be displayed any which way we want, so it was […]Read More Savusavu and Viani Bay
Our cruising season is well underway by now, but we’ve been remote for so much of that time, without internet access, that we haven’t had a chance to publish any blog posts. Now that we’re back for a quick stop in Suva, capital and largest city in Fiji, for some provisioning and picking up of […]Read More 2014 Season. It’s ON.
Our last visitors this season were daughter Kristy and her boyfriend Josh from Hollywood, CA. We packed a lot of activity into their time with us… a week after their departure Stan is still hitting the Advil. This is largely due to a new watersport we added to our repertoire: water skiing. Josh brought us […]Read More Kristy, Josh, Nemo and the Whiskey Smash