we had Sou Wester after Sou wester in NZ. Boat was in Opua on the Marina Mooring and i had to do a few things to get insurance. So i went up , did the gas, looked at the weather and decided id go for it. I had a small window to get to AK before 50-60knot westerlies would hit.
So i first sailed out to Urupekapeka Island at the edge of the Albert Channel on the SAturday. I knew it was still a bit rough at Sea so i chilled for a bit in this beautiful bay to wait it out a bit. At 3.30pm i left for Bland Bay, just slightly north of Whangaruru Harbour. 20nm.
The pass through a narrow section on the Albert Channel was steep short waves coming straight in. Once out near Cape Brett, i did a 90 degree right, between a beautiful Cape Brett and that Rock with the hole in it, and headed south, downwind. After passing through there it was calm as you like.
Spent a nice night on the pick at Bland Bay. Mind blowing here in NZ how you can have 200 m of depth then rocks coming straight out 5 miles out to Sea. Absolutely beautiful, but watches essential.
6am the following day went for Cape Rodney - Leigh, which is a place as a kid id go surfing right near there on a reef called Daniels Reef. This was a 65 mile day and i did this in 12 hours. Passing Hen And Chicks islands and sail rock. amazing scenery. Motor sailed most the way to maintain speed. This meant i couldnt really use the Wind Vane, but ive set up a block system, as the tiller so heavy. Ive added cam cleats to the tiller. Ive done this on every boat and its so helpful.
A night at a beautiful calm Leigh Harbour, barely any Room for the Cray pots. Paddle boarded in , and walked a short walk up the road for Fish n chips. Lovely.
Left 6am the following day for Hobsonville Marina which was me destination. Its a liveaboard marina and a really nice place. City views, out west auckland, which is where im from. My old high school is just up the road.
Motor sailed again, all sails up. Passed Kawau Island, Whangaparoa Peninsula. wind got to about 15- 20 then 40 in about 10 seconds.
Boat rounded up and i had trouble bringing in the furler. (im still undecided about the furler!) I love my hanks.
Doused all sail then re set the furler off the bow sprit Near Rangitoto. Wind maintained 30knots.
Passed north head/Devenoport and the wind generated waves were a bit much. 75 hp engine pushing through steep chop.
Went under the harbour Bridge as far as i could until the boat basically stopped. 17tonne steel against 40-60kn at this point. White water everywhere. Surfable small waves. i only had 4 nm to go!
Spun around and went for Westhaven Marina. spent night there. First ttime docking in a tight space Nervous as...All ok though.
Arrived there monday and the Wednesday was even more wind coming so i was a bit nervous. Was told i could only be there one night.
So Tuesday i went for Hobsonville, due west and made it. Was hard going against the wind, but didnt have much choice but to go backwards behind an island in the gulf - 10 miles or so away. and id have to sit there for days at Anchor waiting out what ended up being 60 knot gusts.
So here i am.
Next Stop Cook Islands and Tahiti at the end of summer. Will keep you posted :)
pix to come
Great photos and story Steve, post more. We cruised that area. You are right about the rocks, at the time my 2ic complained theres rocks, rocks awash and rocks you cant even see. And plenty of wind. Spent a fair bit of time at the Ponsonby Cruising Club at Westhaven
Good onya mate!!
I had a look on Google maps - great neck of the woods.
Maybe install a pot hauler to help with the furling (& other).
really sorry about he upside down photos.
good work sector , she looks like a good strong SV. ps the upside down rock pics still look good !
My neck feels much better now.
Sure is a pretty boat! Enjoy the adventures.
Great Boat with plenty of room. Good on you Steve! Reef early