When we were in Playa Coco during Papagayo season last winter we met a guy who was singlehanding a Union 36 from the east coast of the US around and up to Alaska, traveling upwind most of the time. He was convinced that there was absolutely no such thing as a “good passage”, and that we just managed to forget the horrid stuff and remember the not so terrible parts. At the time we strongly disagreed.
We’ve met plenty of people who hate passages but many more who enjoy them. Most folks just endure them, I think. Rob & I were strongly in the camp of really enjoying most of our passages. Then we got to the South Pacific. What was it I said yesterday about finally starting to understand the weather here? Apparently that was a mistake!
Looking closer this afternoon at the weather charts I can see the front that we drove out into last night. It was a beautiful day in Moorea and I thought the front had passed through well enough to have a decent passage. Nope. The seas were a mess and the boat rolled and pitched violently all night. Things were flying from every corner of the boat, and we’re really good at keeping things put up. The boat has never been this much of a mess.
When we arrived this morning a squall was passing through and it was raining so hard I couldn’t see to drive into the pass and get an anchor down. So we turned around and waited until the squall passed and the rain slowed down enough to see. When we came back into the anchorage another squall moved on top of us and we were trying to anchor in 75 feet of water with 35 knots of wind. Not an easy task, and we got a hook down but ended up in the middle of the channel. After that squall passed by we up anchored, came in closer to shore and settled into a lovely spot in 20 feet of water just off the beach.
It was so rough we didn’t eat any dinner last night, which wouldn’t have mattered to me anyway because I was actually seasick enough to throw up before I managed to get a dose of Stugeron into me. So needless to say our first order of business this morning was breakfast, followed by a nap. When the boat is rolling violently side to side every 8-10 seconds there is little sleep happening on your off watch.
I do remind myself that even though the passages suck down here, I am still afterall in the South Pacific on my own little boat, living a life I do love. But truly, I am still waiting for a decent South Pacific passage.