Passage Prep

Dominic and I are spending today and tomorrow getting ready for a five to six day passage to Suwarrow. Suwarrow is a remote atoll in the Cook Islands, about 650 nuatical miles northwest of our current location in Bora Bora. It’s a national park and nature preserve, only inhabited by two rangers during the winter months, and reputed to having amazing wildlife on land and underwater.

There’s an atmospheric trough hovering over the region now creating unsettled weather, but the southeast trade winds should arrive Thursday night or Friday morning, hopefully generating ideal conditions for our voyage. We haven’t been underway for such a length of time since June, so a little extra effort on the preparation front is probably going to be worth it.

To get us ready, Dominic is busy repairing the adhesive on the stern of our dinghy, so we can get to shore and go exploring easily and safely on our own. He’s also recently installed a third reef in the main, so we’re looking forward to playing with new sail configurations should we have high winds.

I’ll spend the day in the galley, which is fine because it happens to be really overcast today and I got an amazing snorkel in yesterday (Spotted Eagle ray, seven foot Manta ray, and a school of fifty Trumpet fish all sighted within a hundred yards of our hull…exciting stuff!). I’ll prepare lentils and beans, cucumber salad, and harvest the sprouts I’ve been growing the past few days to keep our tummies happy while underway.

Passage prep is a phase of cruising that comes with some emotional turbulence—excitement for new adventures, sadness to see the sun set for the last time on a gorgeous place like Bora Bora—but it’s also an excellent time to reflect on the three dreamy months we’ve spent in French Polynesia.