2010-05-May 2010

May 3, 2010 Baie de Taiohae, Nuka Hiva to Anse Hakatea, (Daniels Bay), Nuka Hiva 6.42nm

This bay was named after a cruiser friendly Marquesan called Daniel who no longer lives here. Supposedly the Survivor TV Series decided to use Daniel's Bay one season and kicked him out. Although I guess his wife and he didn't fare too badly as they built them another bigger and nicer house in a different location. We did our first water hike, there was a tap on shore. The friendly Marquesan who lives there to collect copra said we could use the water and collect any pamplemousse that we want. We anchored the dingy at the beach and hauled the water back and forth, took it back to the boat and then hauled it back on board and into our tanks.

We hiked to the Vaipo Waterfall. This was one of the best hikes we have ever done. First we took the dingy to the river and meandered along until we found the spot to leave the dingy. We walked along the ancient royal road which followed the river past numerous ancient sites, namely pae pae (platforms of stone blocks, on which ha'e (human habitations) were built from native plants and wood) and tohua (a paved rectangular platform with several tiers of basalt block rows on either side. The Tohua were used as meeting places and also hosted festival and dance performances).

Once we arrived closer to the waterfall, either side of the canyon, vertical walls rise to nearly 800 metres. The Vaipo Waterfall is the highest in French Polynesia at 350m, there is a natural siwimming pool at the bottom and we took a quick dip in the pool. Andrea had lost her keens on the beach in Hana Mo Noa, so unfortunately, she had to wear Ryan’s crocs and kept getting blisters, so she switched between crocs and flip flops, not the best hiking footwear. Cari did the whole thing, amazing. It was 1.5 hours each way and we stopped for lunch. Met a guide taking two people. He seemed very paranoid that rocks were going to fall on his head. He had hard hats for his guests and himself, he didn’t go swimming and they ran back out to have lunch by the river. We were eating inside and he looked at us in fear and said "not good here".

A few comments on water conservation: It’s amazing that when you actually have to conserve water, how you just do it. Some examples of how we have been conserving water: doing laundry on shore or using rain water, or not doing it at all just wearing the same clothes more than we are used to, taking showers on shore water, using salt water to rinse our dishes before washing them, using salt water to wash our hands, using less water for everything else then we used to. The kids totally understand and are following the water conservation rules very well.

May 5, 2010 Anse Hakatea, Daniels Bay, Nuka Hiva to Anaho Bay, Nuka Hiva -- 40.83nm

We decided to to go up the west side of the island and it was a very blustery sail upwind in 20 knots. We arrived at the anchorage to find that there are six other boats anchored here and every single one of them have kids aboard!!! We spent the next few days meeting new friends, hiking, playing on the beach, going fishing and having bbq beach parties. We also took the opportunity to go out for a Marquesan dinner with all the other boats in the anchorage. They had a lovely table set, one for the adults and one for the kids, they had bottles

of water and lemonade on the tables, the food included curried goat, bbq'd breadfruit, possoin cru, and rice. After dinner the kids had a hoot hunting for crabs on the beach in the dark.

Ryan also celebrated his 8th birthday party here. We played games, cooked a bunch of food that he requested and had a weenie roast on the beach with a cake.

On Mother's Day, the kids made me coffee and breakfast in bed and cards. They put little hearts everywhere all over the boat for me to find with cute sayings on them for example; one inside the kitchen cupboards says “you make good food”. It was very touching.

Anaho Bay was a great anchorage, there was manta rays in the anchorage, there was snorkelling on Marquesas only reef plus there was a great beach to play on. It was very well protected, a great place to hang out for a while.

May 12, 2010 Anaho Bay, Nuka Hiva to Baie D’Hakahau, Ua Pou - 41.16nm

Whoa, this anchorage is not what I would call ideal. There is a huge barge taking up most of the space dredging the bay, along with 2 tugs boats going in and out with the muck. It was possible to med moor inside the breakwall and there were 2 boats there but it was not recommended because of the requirement to move if a local vessel needs to get by. It is not proctected and a stern anchor was definitley required.

We went into shore and found six little grocery shops! Very exciting, we visited all of them to shop and compare. One storeowner that we bought some frozen chicken in gave the kids 3 popsicle ice creams for free! Another man who was in his car outside one of the stores yelled over to us from inside his car and said meet me tomorrow at 1000 and I’ll bring you to my home to get some fruit. We were just walking by, we didn’t even really talk to him!! The baguettes and frozen chicken are subsidized by the French government and so are reasonable to purchase, everything else is quite expensive to buy. You definitely don’t want to have to do a big provisioning here if you don’t have to, unless it’s fruit, we only bought fruit once, the rest of the time it has been given to us by the truckload by the very friendly and generous locals, man we love you guys!!

Here is our last example of how generous these people are. The following morning we decided to go in to try to find some water and we thought we should keep our 1000 appointment in case the fellow showed up. We were looking to fill our water jugs so I asked one of the guys on the dock who was working on the barge in the harbour if there was water on the dock. He

said it was not potable so I said okay, he asked me a few other things but I couldn't understand so we started walking into town. As we were walking down the road into town, the guy from the dock drives by and slows down beside us, we looked into his jeep and saw our water jugs in the back of his jeep which he collected from our dingy and he drove us to his house and he filled them with drinking water. He gave us a big bag and told us to go and pick some pomplemousse from his tree, then he drove us back to our dingy and helped us load them in. As we were putting the water in, the man from yesterday drove up with 2 huge boxes of fruit for us and said they were for us to have. Bananas, starfruit, papaya, mangos and grapefruit -- the funniest thing was that man who gave us the fruit was the father of the guy who drove us to get the water!

As we were pulling our anchor up and getting organized to leave the harbour a dingy from the barge came over to us, the guy had a bag with 2 baguettes in it to give to us. While we were driving into town earlier, I asked if the boulangerie was open, he said it was closed as it was Ascension Day so a holiday. He gave us the barge's bread!!! We gave them a few things in return, but really, they don't want anything in return.