Fiji to New Zealand crossing on MONGO
3 NOV 2014 - Departed Musket Cove at 0930 on 1 NOV in a light NW’ly breeze. Said good bye to several friends on the way out and sailed out the reef channel into Musket Cove and towards Namotu Island. Pumping SSW swell was due to arrive that day, yet I decided to embark for New Zealand and forego surfing. Boards were stowed and final preparations were made before leaving Musket Cove. Raced the South African-flagged Leopard 45 catamaran Amphitreete towards Namotu. They were slightly faster but could not point as high; it was a draw. They gave in, dropped the jib and motored towards Tavarua Island to go surfing at ‘Restaurants’. Tony and Steve on Knot Tide Down motored past me with no sails set and motored towards the pass between Namotu and Tavarua. That is the deepest and widest pass, yet as I became more and more headed in SW’ly breeze, I was able to tack to port and effectively lay Wilkes Pass. Wilkes is more shallow at just 12-15 meters minimum depth and not as wide but it looked do-able. A quick tack back to starboard near Namotu and then back to port and I was lined up for the pass, able to put the bow down and really power the boat up under full main and working jib. Sailed 20 meters to leeward of a moored surf-transport boat at Namotu Lefts. Sailed up and over several big set waves, none of which were breaking in the pass, and sailed out between Namotu Lefts surf break and Wilkes Pass surf break. Received a nice salute from the six surfers in the water at Namotu Lefts. No one ever claimed that sailing an engineless boat wasn’t dodgy at times. Another solid adrenaline rush on MONGO.