Leg 4, Tauranga to Auckland

8 02 2012

Arrived in Tauranga at 0330 local time this morning. Was another beautiful afternoon and evenings sail in a dying sea breeze. A full moon lit the way, the only disappointing part was seeing the lights of the operation clearing up the shipwreck on the Astrolabe reef. This maritime disaster has had a deep and lasting impact on the local environment – the Bay of Plenty is a stunning part of the world – the ships captain who tried to cut a corner to save a bit of time and money should be taken out the back and shot, or at the very least locked up and the keys thrown away. Probably along with the ships owners or charterers who probably applied pressure on him to save costs, miles, fuel etc.

A quick nap and the friendly local Customs Officer arrived at 0700 to clear us back in to NZ. At the same time Jan, Bruce and Cam walked down the dock armed with a long black and a flat white. Just what we needed. Ross has been whisked away by Jan for a quick shower then a drive to Auckland to see a specialist this afternoon. He will probably require the services of an ear specialist as well as his right ear will be playing up by now.

We left Taurange Bridge Marina at 1030 on the turn of the tide and have approx 120nm to Half Moon Bay Marina – my old stomping ground in Bucklands Beach. the Tauranga harbourmaster came tearing over in his RIB as we were exiting the harbour and I was wondering what we had done wrong, as it turns out Charlie (the harbourmaster) used to sail with Dad and I on Honeywell, a Young 11 that dad built in the early 80s. It was a pretty radical concept at its time, ultra light, open transom, very controversial to all the old fuddy duddy IOR lead smuggling vessel owners who deemed it too fast, dangerous and unseaworthy. maybe they were just pissed off that we looked like we were having much more fun than them. Anyway, Charlie came over to say hi, and to pass on his best and say how sorry he was that we had to pull out of Leg 3.

There is little to no wind, hopefully a sea breeze will develop later as it is getting hot, very hot. Just caught lunch with a line over the back, so things are looking up.

Campbell.

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