Sailing Around The World

Early Start, But a Few Problems Fiji

I woke up thinking that it was five in the morning because of daylight savings time and I actual woke up at six so I already started my day behind. My plan was to get up early and sail to Namena Marina Park to do some finally scuba diving. Realizing the time I quickly grabbed the dinghy and Jess helped me get it on deck. Then we put everything that could fly around the boat away. I fired up the engine and Ben went forward to retrieve the anchor but the windless push button would not engage the windless electric motor. So Ben and pulled the 200 feet of chain up and stored it. Mean while I went back to the helm to discover that the Garmin Chart plotter was not receiving any GPS signal. So I pull the wires off the back cleaned them and plugged them back in and it fired up and worked correctly. I motored through the 100 yard coral passage and out into the ocean. The wind that we hoped for was not there and we had to motor. SO well the ocean was calm I went up into the anchor locker and took apart the wireing on the windless and snapped a power bolt stud off because it was froze in salt. I spent six hours upside down in a small box called the anchor locker and sweated my butt off. The good news is that after drilling the bolt, retapping and installing a new bolt I was able to put a strong patch on the windless. I also cleaned and replaced any bad wire connections. The really crappie thing is that the windless was not working because a small nut holding on the negative wire on the push button switch was a little lose and caused it to stop working. So after six hours fixing the windless that I broke, it only took 30 second to tighten the nut on the push button which caused the problem in the first place.

After all that fun in the sun we approached the North entrance to Namena Marina Park but all the passage markers were missing. So I relied on visual navigation and prayed that my charts were correct. Well I could not see the reefs and the passage was narrow. The chart indicated 30 feet to clear the reef into the lagoon. The actual depth in the passage was 122 feet and I never saw the reef or coral heads. I guess I picked a deep passage then shown on the chart maybe. Who knows, but I cleared through and found the anchorage off of a private Island. We are looking forward to Diving early tomorrow and then off to Suva before we make our big passage to New Zealand.

Thanks,

Jacques

2 responses

  1. Randy Scott

    Congrats on one year of adventure. When do your folks rejoin you?

    November 7, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    • My folks should rejoin sometime in February or March. I am going to go hike through New Zealand or maybe get a job, not sure.

      November 8, 2013 at 5:13 am