May 4, 2017 – Dot on the Move – #38

Tattered Flag - With only 35% of our tattered NZ courtesy flag remaining, we figure it's time to roll
Tattered Flag – With only 35% of our NZ courtesy flag remaining, we figure it’s time to roll

Hard to believe we’ve been in New Zealand for nearly six months. For the last six weeks we’ve been focused on preparing Batu and her crew for passagemaking once again.

In addition to boat projects, we’ve been carefully watching the weather patterns and trying to find a workable slot for our passage to Tahiti.  One thing is for sure, the weather, and the forecasts, change quickly here. I keep hoping to find a good window and press  “freeze frame,” but haven’t got that sorted yet. Nonetheless, with chilly temps and more frequent rains, the time to depart is approaching.

Perhaps our biggest stress in departing was selling our car, Fern. She was looking so good after her “for sale” wash & vacuum. Fern was so pleased with herself that she decided to take a slow moving dive into a fence and munch her front fender, a bit like a dog rolling in the first mud puddle (or worse) right after a bath. Anyhow, it took some sorting, but in the end, we managed to find a good home for her where she will be well appreciated. We loved her, but sadly, Fern was not a good financial investment in the end.

After weeks of searching for the perfect weather window, I’ve decided that, if it does exist, it certainly doesn’t last for a month. In the end, we’ve settled for what I think will at least be a workable one. Although a late-season tropical depression is swirling over Vanuatu about 1200nm north of us, the south pacific ridge has been rising to a latitude that, we hope, will give us decent winds. Since the forecasts beyond a few days out are merely fiction, I suppose we’ll just have to get what we get and not throw a fit. Fingers crossed. We plan to depart on Thursday, May 4, behind a small low.

Our dot’s on the move and, I am thankful because I love to sail.  We hope to cover the 2250 – 2500nm passage in the next three to four weeks, and we’ll try to post updates once we arrive.


6 thoughts on “May 4, 2017 – Dot on the Move – #38”

  1. HI! It just doesn’t seem possible that it has been 1 1/2+ years that you have been on your adventure and now you are heading back to us all!!! Praying for a great adventure back. We love tracking you and reading your blogs! Safe sailing! Love, Dean, Cindy, Lauren , Alex and Julia

    1. Hi Cindy!

      Thanks for your message! It’s great to hear from you. We just arrived in Tahiti, where the air literally smells of flowers. I could smell it for 40 miles out to sea! Our 20 passage was seriously challenging, but also good. We broke some things in heavy conditions, but managed to keep going at a pretty good pace. We had a 36 hour gale with winds above 50 knots that shook us like a dog toy, but now we know we can handle even that. We’ll touch base more later, but in the meantime, please spread the hugs far and wide with our beloved family. We love you and think of each of you often.

      Peter, Karen, Sean & Sarah

  2. Hey guys, we’ve been following your blog since we got back to Southern California. (Obviously, following but not writing comments.) Hope your weather up toward Tahiti has been good. Sail safe. Miss swimming in La Cruz with you guys. What an adventure.
    Ron and Gail

    1. Dear Ron & Gail,

      Awesome! Great to hear from you, and glad to know we’re still in touch! We were not sure if you got our periodic updates. I heard the comment recently that “an adventure is simply a misfortune properly understood.” That said, we had an adventurous passage to Tahiti – more broken equipment than we’ve ever had before and one ferocious gale with winds 25-53 kts for 36 hours, but we’ve arrived in the place where the air smells of flowers and the winds (usually) blow benevolently. We’ll post an update ASAP. In the meantime, big hugs to the crew of Lokomaikai!

      The Batuligans

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