We left Sunday at 0820 and have been underway from the Marquesas to the Tuamotus. It is a 447 nautical mile trip. We are making good time – covering 130 miles on Day One and 120 Miles on Day Two. Wish we had these speeds crossing the Pacific, it would have taken us a week less! And we are making these good speeds with everything reefed because of all the squalls in the area. And the other great news, Otis, our windvane has been steering the boat most of the way. He "hiccups" regularly when we get a wind increase or shift – but overall, we are pleased. It certainly uses less power (like none).
We are on a beam reach and unfortunately the seas are also right on the beam making it very rolly. This is the bad news – its hard to get anything done especially because we regularly have a monster wave that sets the boat gunnel to gunnel.
Michael caught and landed a good sized tune yesterday. We think it is a skip-jack tuna and easily 8-10 pounds of meat after cleaning. We'll send photos to our marine scientist relatives for species confirmation. We enjoyed a tuna dinner within an hour of the fish being landed. He put up a good fight and Michael wore our homemade "fighting belt" to save getting a belly bruise. He now thinks the other fish we caught but never landed was also a tuna because the behavior was very similar to this one in the water.
We now have a full refrigerator and freezer thanks to two good catches in the past week – tuna and mahi, yum.
The atoll we are heading for is Raroia. Without "googling" can anyone tell us what this particular atoll is famous for? The answer tomorrow.
We should arrive very early Thursday morning – in fact we have to slow down so we make it in daylight – and good daylight. It is tricky to enter into these atolls through small cuts in the reef – so you need good conditions including tides, waves and visibility. We'll "heave to" and wait it out if we get there too early.