We did anchor watches all night in the storm, but our anchor held just fine.  Silvio’s advice was to drop the anchor at the drop-off at the edge of the sand bank / lagoon channel, so that the anchor would pull uphill.  That worked well, but with all of the coral head and coral on the wall of the channel, getting the anchor up is going to be a challenge.  Matajusi tried moving yesterday and I ended up helping them by diving down with scuba gear to free the anchor, which was wrapped around coral.  Lauren tried taking a look at our anchor yesterday when she jumped in for a while to relax.  The chain was snaking around coral heads and then disappeared over the wall at the edge of sand bank.  She followed it down to 30 feet before coming back up.  It should be interesting to retrieve today.

If the wind doesn’t get too bad, we’re headed for Raiatea in an hour or so, about 20 miles away.  We’ll probably make a short stop of a day or two at the south end of the island and then move on to Bora Bora (another 30 miles), our last official stop in French Polynesia.  We should make it there before Dragon, the boat we crewed on through the Panama Canal, has left for Tonga, and it will be nice to catch up with them.  We’ve been trading e-mails ever since Panama.  Yesterday, we could see Bora Bora on the horizon just north of Raiatea and Tahaa.

DSC_0305 Raiatea (left) and Tahaa (right).   Bora Bora is farther right, but hard to see in the pic.

We were planning to move yesterday, but didn’t make it.  We got around a little too late to get to Raiatea, and ended up doing some file swapping with Matajusi in the afternoon.  They’re getting a bunch of our movies, and we’re getting cruising guides for a good portion of the world.

We finished the day with some time in town.  There’s a restaurant/bar by the beach, so I treated Lauren to a few of the draft Hinanos she’s been craving.  We also couldn’t resist another pizza from the pizza van.  From the tables nearest the beach, you can see the outline of the woman of Huahine in the mountain contours (it’s much easier to “see” at night).  She has a bit of a pot or pregnant belly, and the legs take a little imagination, but the face and chest are easily identifiable.  It’s been a while since we were sitting in a touristy waterfront restaurant/bar.  As cool as it is to watch the sunset, etc. from the boat, it was nice to get off it for a while and enjoy the view with a cold draft and hot pizza.


The woman’s belly, a pretty peak near the anchorage

DSC_0312 A nice evening