The fog is burning off this morning and the temperature is on the rise. Matt and I are finishing a few last minute jobs on the boat before we fuel up and clear out of the country. After months of hard work, Tamata looks brand new and we are anxious to get back out to sea. Actually, it feels a lot like the November morning a year and a half ago when we sailed out of Newport Harbor to begin this whole trip. Back then, we were planning on being in Australia by now, but things don't always go as planned for better or for worse. We certainly aren't complaining about having three more months in French Polynesia ahead of us.
Once we leave the Bay of Islands we'll set a course for the Austral Islands, approximately 2,000nm ENE of New Zealand. This passage has the potential to be our most challenging yet. We're hoping we won't have to track too far south, but of course it all depends on weather and we'll be watching it closely. We have the capability to receive tons of meteorological information through our single sideband radio. And honestly, there's not much else to do at sea besides download weather charts. We'll also be reading lots, hopefully catching fish, and keeping an eye out for whales. We can't wait!
I'll be updating the blog as regularly as I can and we will be sure to update our map daily as long as conditions allow. We're taking bets on how many days it'll take us to get there (though we've given up any hope of trying to catch our friends Martin and Lexi on Pau Hana who left a week ago). Fingers crossed for a smooth passage!