OK, we have a plan. The weather is due to change soon. We’re going to have to make a mad dash for Whangarei, 60 miles down the coast, before a new low (with associated high winds and rain) comes blasting across the North Island on Wednesday. So…scrap the part about leisurely cruising down the coast. It’s not practical at this point. In the mean time, we’ll just enjoy this magic spot we’re in!
So, today, we had a picnic. We hiked an hour out to a spectacular point with a stunning view (island, trees, green field of grass, cliffs, ocean, etc-kind of like putting Big Sur, Point Reyes, Petaluma and Channel Islands together in one spot) you would be hard pressed to exceed anywhere in the world. And we sat down for a picnic. And enjoyed the view for all it was worth!
Then back to Charisma for a little boat work. Ann cleaned the hull at the waterline. Up and down both sides in the dinghy scrubbing the gunk that accumulates off both sides. Up 37 feet and down the other 37 feet.
I got to dive on the propeller. There is a zinc there that protects Charisma from corrosion. It’s attached to the propeller shaft about two to three feet under the stern. Zinc corrodes faster then stainless steel, so this is called a “sacrificial” zinc. Stray electrical current (largely from other boats in marinas) tries to corrode metal parts. The zinc corrodes first as long as there is some there. Our zinc that we put on from last April was about two thirds gone. When I started taking it off, most of it fell apart and sunk. It wouldn’t have lasted the six months we’re going to be in a marina in New Zealand, and was important I replaced it. But, it was coooollddd. It’s not yet summer here. Brrrr. But Charisma’s happy now that she has a clean hull and a new zinc, so we are too.
Oh, yeah…back to the plan. Instead of cruising down the coast, we’ll spend one more day (mañana) here-do some final hiking and fishing, then Monday morning our time, we’ll leave at “oh dark thirty” and motor sail down the coast. Whatever it takes to maintain six knots. If there’s enough wind, we’ll sail, but nothing less than six knots and we’ll do the sixty miles to Marsden in 10 hours. The plan then is have dinner there with Bright Angel, who are doing the same thing, then move on upriver to Whangarei the next day following the high tide upriver where we’ll tie up and stay until May of next year when the tropical cyclone season is over and we can head north again.
At least that’s today’s plan. 🙂