Leaving Rurutu with 10 knots of easterly breeze gave us a beautiful beam reach to Tahiti. We averaged a solid 7knts so had to reef our sails not because of high winds but because we needed to slow down as to arrive at the pass into Papeete in day light. The weather was a nice warm 29 degrees and the seas were calm with only a meter of swell. What a contrast to our previous voyage! It was fantastic!! And something that we really needed.
We arrived at the southern pass into Papeete harbour and headed for Marina Taina to fill up with diesel. We had emailed before we left Rurutu to see if we could get a mooring at this marina but were told it was full. Being the only apparent place to fill up with diesel we were going to stop anyway for that purpose. When we called on the radio to enquire if they were open at this early hour we were told the pumps were broken and diesel was unavailable for the day. We knew we were pretty low on fuel at this point so asked where else we could get it and told Moorea (2 hour sail west) was the nearest place. I gave berth availability one more shot and they said they had a spot open up late yesterday afternoon! What luck.. So we slipped into the marina which docks vessels Mediterranean style with your stern to the dock and bow fixed to lines coming up from the bottom of the channel on the inland side of the finger for the super yachts.
We had developed a small leak in the muffler and had torn away some of the UV protection strip on the jib in the 40-50 knot winds of leg 2, so I sourced the needed tradesmen to get things moving as soon as possible. There were no replacement parts for the muffler so it needed to be removed and sent to a welder for repair. This meant we couldn’t leave Papeete until the following Thursday 6 days later.
Gordon needed to leave straight away that night in order to make a flight to the U.S. for work. What a shame for him as him as he didn’t even get a chance to enjoy Tahiti after such an arduous voyage. Juan went off to meet with Briana who both will be joining us in Raratonga for leg 4.
The leg 3 participants all had lodging until the scheduled joining day on Saturday so I had two nights on board by myself. I found out that there was a party organised for the many super yachts moored on the Friday night and since we were on the same finger we were invited as well. Brad and Deborah were nearby so they came and joined me for the festivities. BBQ, wine and beer was supplied complete with Tahitian music and dancers! We had a great time hob nobbing.
Brad, Deborah, Thomas and Lizbeth all joined the boat on Saturday and we spent the next week driving around Tahiti looking at the sights in a rental car that Brad and Deborah had from their previous Air B&B, snorkelling, provisioning and generally getting the boat in order for the next leg.
To be honest other than the incredible clarity of the water we weren’t overly impressed with Tahiti and anxious to move on to Moorea which we have heard is much better representation of French Polynesia.