Heading South

[Lots of new images uploaded in different galleries. Enjoy! – admin]

Wednesday 28 July 2010 Waterfall Bay, Pentecost 15 47.20S,  168 09.70S

After a relaxed start to the day at our last anchorage, (somewhere in the South Pacific), we finally began our journey south to Port Vila, signaling the end of this tour.

We had intended to evacuate a young boy with a suspected stress fracture of the knee but after making contact this morning by phone with the village nurse and hearing of his progress after taking some basic pain killing and anti-inflammatory drugs, it was decided to leave him be.

This meant that we didn’t have to drop into Asanvari, nor alter our plans to come home via Santo.  Instead we headed pretty much due south, with the west coasts of Maewo and Pentecost on our left all day.  This afforded us a considerable amount of protection from the wind and high seas which have been howling in from the south east at 25-35 knots and punishing (as it always does) the east coast of the islands.

Starting out late this morning we motor-sailed for about 50 miles, making it to Waterfall Bay, just south of Melsisi as the last of the (very brief) twilight gave way to darkness.  It was a touch of impeccable timing with the anchor being dropped in 10 metres of water a few hundred metres off a white sandy beach.

We’ve just finished dinner – another wonderful Lanie-concoction –  the wind is howling outside, the sea is remarkably calm and passing rain squalls get us up occasionally to shut the hatches and portholes.

Onshore there are quite a few more lights than you’d normally expect in a place like this, so there’s obviously a source of electricity somewhere – maybe hydro power from the waterfall.  No doubt we’ll find out tomorrow when we go ashore to explore.  Having been up and down this coastline a couple of times now we feel quite at home but the rugged forest-covered and mountainous interior of the island continues to amaze us.

As for Waterfall Bay, I think it’s pretty much the only anchorage in these parts which we haven’t stopped at, and as the name suggests it has a white sandy beach, oh, and a waterfall.  We saw the waterfall from out at sea the other day and it looked spectacular. Tomorrow we hope to get up close and personal with the day set aside for exploring ashore and doing maintenance jobs onboard.  We are down to our last few mud brick moulds and instruction manuals, but I don’t think I can go ashore tomorrow without one of each under my arm.  We’ve done demonstrations in several of the neighbouring villages so maybe the word has got around.  We might even catch up with people met earlier.

Smooth seas, fair breeze and heading south

Robert Latimer

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