Our Mission: To boldly go until we are no more!

Monday, June 17, 2024

Day 6

With our increasing latitude, temperatures are finally cooling off and we may even start wearing clothes! The sea temp reads 82F (down from 88F). Winds have been nice trades (15 – 20 kn) and no squalls or lightning for about a day.

This from Sailingbird’s Guide to the Kingdom of Tonga on approaching the Vavau group:

From the North
The triangular stretch of water between Samoa, Tonga and Fiji can be very rough – some vessels have reported their worst South Pacific weather in this region. Even at the height of the SE trade-wind season, conditions are unpredictable. This is a volatile area where heavy squalls (as well as electrical storms accompanied by tremendous sheets of lightning and thunder) can occur anytime throughout the year.

From the East
This passage from the Societies or the Cook Islands is a fairly straightforward affair, but some factors should be considered. Winds blow primarily from an easterly direction, but periods of unsettled weather are usually encountered somewhere along this route.

Both the reel lure and the handline lure got mangled so we replaced them. We will try to pay better attention to strikes today – our last day of fishing until we leave Tonga for New Zealand in about 11 weeks.

On June 17, 2024

1200 Tonga Time

1600 PDT (June 16)

1300 NZST (June 17)

Our position was:

18d02.7m S, 171d57.0m W

COG 255dT

Noon to noon:  203 nm

We plan to make landfall early tomorrow morning and clear into the country in Neiafu. At least we won’t be dripping sweat on all the paperwork.

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