|Hawaii Cruising and Loafing May 2003 to Jan. 2004
After settling out in Hilo and sending Dick Ryan off to the working world by air, Alvin Koo and I ran down the windward coast of Hawaii past green fields topping cliffs often split by water falls in strong following winds. We ran a ways down the Alinuihaha Channel and anchored in Nishimura Bay. This was a great stop offering a constant porpoise show and the action of white-capped channel seas marching past. The next day we reached across the channel in winds 15 to 30 knots that died completely off La Perouse Bay so that we powered in calms along the Maui coast past Kaanipali Beach. We planned to spend the night anchored at Kaanikikai Harbor on Molokai and had a brisk downwind sail close by the Molokai reef when we had a humpback whale breaching ahead of us well out of season. It seems there were two adults seemingly teaching a calf about breaching and tail flopping and we got a much closer look at the action than I would have liked. In that we were sailing at high speed and close to a gibe I lacked ability to turn and we passed the whales within a couple of boat lengths.
From Molokai we sailed to Honolulu where I received very fine treatment with moorage at the Waikiki Yacht Club where I attacked a number of projects including sail repair, new SSB radio, new autopilot and oil lines. I had a visit from Colorado pal Wink Davis occasioning a trip up the Waianae Coast and local sight seeing. Late in June I sailed to Hanalei Bay, on the north coast of Kauai and spent a month in paradise. The bay is by far the grandest place in the state and during the summer months it is a great anchorage. There were always 5 or more yachts at anchor. Many of them use Hanalei as a last stop before heading for the Pacific Northwest or California. I even met Gordon and Elise Schmidt on C-lise. Gordon remembered taking our stern lines on arrival in Tahiti in 1980. They have been cruising much of the time since and were on the way back to Seattle. Good friendships were made with a number of boats, cemented by joint efforts in recovering Celebration, a 36-foot cutter, from grounding on the entry reef. I returned to Waikiki YC August 1st, resumed Honolulu social life and prepared to fly to Seattle.
The Seattle trip to share Grandson Brendanís 13th Birthday was great fun and I returned loaded up with spare parts for Jubilant. During October and early November I did a couple of long trips to Maui, Lanai and Molokai. The Lahina YC mooring buoys available to visitors make staying in Lahina Roads much less nerve wracking. I had a good time on both visits. The spots most enjoyed were Honolua Bay near the north end of Maui where the diving was great. I had charter dive visitors each day but the bay to myself after 3 pm almost every day. At Makena Anchorage I swam with sea turtles each day and was the only cruising yacht. A night anchored off the Maui Prince at Makena made for a cosmopolitan change. McGregor landing, just a dingy ride from Maalea Boat Harbor was a nice one-boat anchorage with a great night view. Kaumalapau Harbor on Lanai is no longer commercially active and I found it much more comfortable than the anchorage off Manele Bay. The end of October found me back at Waikiki YC doing projects and preparing to recruit crew for a Pacific trip to leave in late January.
I moved the boat to Ko Olina Marina for a month to allow me to go to Vail for a 3-week ski trip. I hit it right. There was plenty of snow. I spent 13 days at Vail and two in Aspen. Ainít life grand? Thanks Wink and Andrea.
Returning 12/19, I moved the boat back to Waikiki YC, selected two fine guys as crew for a trip to Australia through Fanning, the Northern Cooks, Samoa, Tonga, Fiji and New Caledonia. Time is slipping toward a planned 1/24 sailing date as a couple of dozen minor items get done.
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