Tag Archives: tahiti

Teti'aroa surge off the mooring

Sweet Sail Day: Tahiti to Teti’aroa

It was time to leave Tahiti, officially.  We left Tahiti “proper” or the main anchorage of Marina Taina a few days ago.  During that time, we were in the sweet anchorage of Point Venus which is still a big part of Tahiti.  We did a little more exploring and found a few large grocery stores, poste, pharmacy, fuel stations, and plumbing shop.  Who knew there would be supplies at the North point of Tahiti?

We met some great cruisers while anchored in Point Venus.  Odyle is a tall ship with a lovely family onboard: Abraham, Susan, Saoirse and Cian.  They’ve been at this anchorage for a few months repairing their engine, but all is good now.  We also met JollyDogs and Zeizo who are both American boats.  Great anchorage and good company.  Couldn’t resist inserting another cool shot of the famous lighthouse.

Point Venus Lighthouse

Point Venus Lighthouse

Sweet Sail

We raised the main sail, pulled up the hook and set out to a new island. We were both excited about visiting Teti’aroa as it is a small atoll with no access into the lagoon.  There are a few moorings just outside the reef that are available for charters and cruisers.  We were hoping to get lucky enough to snag one of the moorings.

Our sail over to Teti’aroa was amazing.   We shut the engines off just after leaving the reef. We had full sails, small swell, and wind on the beam.  It was a glorious day with blue skies, puffy clouds and calm seas.  Just another reminder why love sailing – picture perfect.

Passage Details:

Miles Traveled:  29.2nm

Duration:  4.5 hrs

Avg. Speed: 5.8

Max Speed: 9.4

Wind Speed: 10-12 kts

Swell:  .5 meters on the beam

About a few miles out from the atoll we could see 3 masts.  We were a bit crestfallen as we had heard there were only 3 moorings here.  However, we were determined to check it out up close.  It is pretty darn scary to see the reef breaking in front of and so close to the boats.

We entered the breakwater and motored around the three boats.  To our surprise we saw that there was a free mooring just behind them.  Sweet!  We tied up and enjoyed the show.  What show are you thinking?  One of the charter boat captains was bringing in his guests and had to navigate the reef and rather large waves.  It is an art to be able to get their dinghy through this dangerous area.  The surge is breaking less than 30 meters from the boat.  Hope this mooring holds our boat.

Teti'aroa surge off the mooring

Teti’aroa surge off the mooring

It is a breezy, but also rolly.  The surge is big, and the waves are loud.

Surge at Teti'aroa

Surge at Teti’aroa

French Polynesia Poly Magnet SSB Group

Absorbed into Tahiti

We had only planned on spending a week in Tahiti, but that was written in sand during low tide.  It is easy to get absorbed into a routine here.  Especially when you have access to supplies, marine stores, markets, and fresh goods.  In addition, you have lots of cruising friends to keep you entertained.  We ran into our good friend Barry on Adventures of an Old Seadog, Mike from “Easy”, Josh and Rachel from Voyages of Agape, Niki and Peter on Sailmore, James and Kimmie from Zingaro, Adam and Daniel from Reverence, and James from Moonrise.

Barry is always good for a million laughs and superb stories.  We hung out with him and Mike from “Easy” several times before Barry headed toward New Zealand.  Barry was in a slip at the Papeete Marina, so we often went into town and stopped by.

Barry from Adventures of an Old Seadog

Barry from Adventures of an Old Seadog

We “controlled” ourselves for the most part, but typically the four of us can be trouble..  From left to right: Barry, me, Matt and Mike (top).  Barry is pretending to be grumpy but he comes across simply adorable.

"<yoastmark

Matt and I participate in the French Polynesia Poly Magnet which is a twice daily SSB net where cruisers report their position underway and share news and information.  Birget from “Pitufa” held a happy hour so that everyone could meet the face behind the voices.  It was really interesting to meet these folks face to face as we have been hearing their voices for months.

French Polynesia Poly Magnet SSB Group

French Polynesia Poly Magnet SSB Group

After our happy hour, we walked a few miles to a food truck park where we enjoyed tasty pizza, pasta and burgers.

Food Trucks in Tahiti

Food Trucks in Tahiti

Provisioning in Papeete

In between all the fun, we have worked on boat projects (see list below) and provisioned the boat.  There is a huge fresh market downtown Papeete.  You can get fresh goods, trinkets, souvenirs, and oh so much more.

Fresh Market in Papeete

Fresh Market in Papeete

We had not seen our good friend James since Panama and it was a real treat to hang out with him again.

James from Moonrise with Sugar Shack

James from Moonrise with Sugar Shack

Our friends on Reverence, Adam and Daniel invited Agape and us over for happy hour.  It was really nice to see their beautiful boat, a 58′ Tiana.  They are flying back to the states and hired a crew to deliver their boat back to San Francisco for them where they plan to sell her.

Adam, Daniel, Rachel, Josh, Matt and I

Adam, Daniel, Rachel, Josh, Matt and I

You can easily get absorbed into a routine in Tahiti.  We did not mean to stay almost a month that’s for sure.  But at least we were productive, had fun, and engaged with lots of people.  Being “absorbed” isn’t all bad.

Boat Projects Completed:

  • Starboard engine circulation water pump replaced
  • Starboard toilet joker replaced
  • Replaced two water hoses for the freshwater pumps in each engine room
  • Installed fuel filter on Sweetie
  • Installed windlass activation switch at Starboard helm
  • Washed down boat
  • Caught up on writing blog and scheduling posts
  • Recaptured and saved photos that were being deleted from iCloud. I now officially hate iCloud!
  • Cleaned half the boat waterline from the muck that grew while anchored in Tahiti

One of the SSB net boats, Winsome lost its engine and had to sail back from the Cook Islands.  We assisted them as they came through the pass and anchored.

Assisting Winsome enter port

Assisting Winsome enter port

This massive sailboat had the most spectacular dinghy.  Check out how the lines of the sailboat and colors match the dinghy.

Matching Dinghy

Matching Dinghy

The days got away from us.  Our routine absorbed us. But, we managed to escape and move on as we have new islands and a new archipelago to explore!

Lemberger's Visit Sugar Shack

Texas is in the House: Lembergers

John, Missy, and Carl joined us on board Sugar Shack in Tahiti.  We’ve known this cast of characters from Texas for over 2 decades.  They visited us in Costa Rica when Sugar Shack was on the hard.  And now we get to show off our home on the water. It’s so much fun to show them the beauty of our life in French Polynesia.

They arrived Papeete, Tahiti at 0600 after 24 hours of travel from Texas.  We shuttled them to the boat where we unpacked and got settled. They brought all sorts of tasty treats from Texas.  Those included a variety of Texas beers, Diplomatico, and Rose.

Texas Liquor Distributors

Texas Liquor Distributors

We made a plan shortly after unpacking and snorkeling.  Our goal was to make it to Bora Bora during their stay. Which means lots of moving.  First, we made a quick stop to the Papeete fresh fruit and veggie market.  We stocked up on fresh goods and a few Tahitian trinkets.

Snorkeling in Tahiti

A popular snorkel and free dive site was just off our port side.  A Cessna and two barges were sunk next to each other to create a unique opportunity.  At 8-10 meters deep and are just starting to see some growth.

Cessna Snorkel Site in Tahiti

Cessna Snorkel Site in Tahiti

We all enjoyed swimming with the sea life and posing for silly underwater photos.

Snorkeling in Tahiti

Snorkeling in Tahiti

We did not linger in Tahiti.  We quickly finished up provisioning and left Papeete for Point Venus.

Point Venus, Tahiti

This is a truly beautiful anchorage.  Very few boats, small village, beautiful views, and a black sand beach.  Missy, Carl and I went exploring on shore.

We found this enormous whale made of cans.  The outside (lower right photo) shows the cans painted white. The middle photo shows the interior with the multiple colors of cans.

Point Venus Adventures

Point Venus Adventures

We got photo ops near the memorials of Captain Cook, The Bounty, and the Missionaries.

Memorials of Point Venus

Memorials of Point Venus

After a short rain shower, we were blessed with a double rainbow.

Double Rainbow over Point Venus

Double Rainbow over Point Venus

MO’OREA

The next day we hustled over to Opunohu Bay at Mo’orea. This has become another favorite spot for us.  We anchored in 2 meters of clear, turquoise water.  The best part of this anchorage is the easy access to Sting Ray City.  It was hard to contain our excitement.  These majestic creatures did not disappoint. They let you get up close and personal.

Sting Rays at Sting Ray City

Sting Rays at Sting Ray City

It did not take long for our Texas friends to get comfortable with these creatures.

Touching and Playing with Sting Rays

Touching and Playing with Sting Raysity

They love to burrow and “hide” themselves in the sand.

Sting Ray Burrowing

Sting Ray Burrowing

Carl got this great shot of Sugar Shack.

Sugar Shack at Opunohu Bay, Mo'orea

Sugar Shack at Opunohu Bay, Mo’orea

John, Missy and Carl went on the Safari Mario Tour the next morning.  It seemed like they enjoyed exploring Mo’orea and the pineapple plantations.

John, Missy and Carl on Mo'orea'orea

John, Missy and Carl on Mo’orea’orea

While waiting for our friends to finish up with their tour, we visited the Hilton for some cold beverages and a little R&R.

Hilton Hotel Mo'orea

The next day we moved to Cooks Bay to show them the town of PaoPao.  And, to of course visit Allo’s Pizza.  A local teenager graced us with a beautiful gift of a flora lei.

Allo Pizza with a free lei

Allo Pizza with a free lei

Coming Up Next:

We do an overnight passage to Huahine.