Saturday, August 27, 2011

Finally Calming Down

We spent nearly 24 hours with the winds blowing here at 25-30 knots, with the highest gust recorded at 42 knots. And from a direction in which we are getting no protection from the near reef--only from the rim of the atoll several miles away. Our friend Kennedy on Far Star, a single-hander, dragged about 80 feet in the middle of the night, but fortunately he had dragging room and did finally stop dragging at about 4am. Once daylight came, he, with the help of a friend, set another anchor.

The broken anchor has been retrieved. It is an older stainless steel plow, and got hooked sideways on a coral head and then pulled hard at 90 degrees to the blade. It snapped right at joint between the blade and the shaft. There are obvious signs of 'crevice corrosion'. Those stainless steel anchors sure look pretty hanging off the bow, but they have no place on a cruising boat as a primary anchor.

By yesterday morning, the winds had calmed enough and switched to about 120T (from 135T) and we were getting enough protection that the waves weren't too bad. We were still getting periodic squalls through, but the wind between the squalls was 'only' 20 knots.

Once the weather broke a little, we continued with the cruisers-helping-cruisers activities. Dave from Soggy Paws and Jerry from Challenger held a mini refrigeration seminar over on the big catamaran Sete Mares. The two of them had just finished reviving Jerry's plugged evaporator plate refrigeration system.

Meanwhile, Avril from Dream Away and I were swapping Tongan cruising guides, waypoints, and utility programs. We also managed to brave the heavy chop in the anchorage to go ashore and help James, the head Park Ranger, with his computer issues.

The forecast shows continued easing of the wind, and a little more backing to the NE. We are looking forward to enjoying more of the charms of Suwarrow in the coming week.
Sherry & Dave
On our way from French Polynesia toward Tonga

At 8/24/2011 8:00 PM (utc) our position was 13°14.86'S 163°06.47'W

1 comment:

  1. I follow your blob each day and am glad to hear things have calmed down for you guys. My wife Kathy and I are a few years from starting our cruising adventures so until then we enjoy following yours. Fair winds,
    Tim & Kathy Goddard, Perry GA.