Saturday, June 23, 2012

Day 0- Taibo (pronounced sap-oh) Tabuaeran!

Time: 2200 Zulu (1000 Hawaii time)
Position: 03-deg 51-min N 159-deg 21-min W
Wind: NE 10 Seas: calm
Rig: at anchor Nabari (north) side of atoll pass
Distance to Suvorrov Atoll: 1,046-nm

Over the past week we have been busy as always, ashore nearly every day to surf the break on the other side of the pass. The 4-day swell was epic and Chris took full advantage of it. He did receive a kiss from the coral when he did one too many cut backs instead of exiting the wave, ending up with a shin injury and a compromised leash after wrapping around some coral. However, we have been carefully managing the wound and it is healing well. Aboard, Shawn has been cooking banana-apple-nut bread like crazy and Chris scoured the cockpit (the banana sap being the last straw) and it is now nearly gleaming. One mishap, we ran out of our first propane tank. Not a problem, because we have a second, but strange as we usually get 11-weeks of cooking from each 2.5-gallon tank. It turns out that the crimp on the flexible hose from the tank to the regulator was leaking. Chris had another already assembled specifically for that purpose, one of those things that we likely should have changed out before leaving Hawaii. No big deal, we will just have to fill up again in American Samoa. With our water tanks filled with sweet rain water, it feels strange that propane is now our limiting resource. After meeting with our favorite police/immigration officer (the one whose radio Chris fixed) several times, we are checked out of Kiribati. We spent yesterday aboard getting Tao back into sailing shape, no small task as we appear to have grown roots here. We have now organized and re-stowed everything, cooked and cleaned. Last evening we celebrated by eating the last of our cabbage in a coconut-peanut-cabbage salad.

This morning we are finally as close as we are going to be to be ready to push off. The weather (despite the ITCZ moving around us and yesterdays squally conditions) appears to be as our forecasts surmised so we must get to the final preparations to head out on the slack tide, around 10am Hawaii time. Our next destination is the Northern Cook Islands. We were hoping to visit Pehnrhyn first, but since we are a little behind schedule and it is also a bit further upwind, we will likely point toward Suvarrov instead. That means approximately 1,046-nm, 10ish days to make it our longest passage for this season, and includes crossing the Equator into the South Pacific. We will attempt to update the blog daily and make nightly radio contact with the Pacific Seafarers Net. Onward!

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