Day 238, Year 1: Arrival in Cook’s Bay, Moorea
Date: Monday, June 12, 2006
Latitude: 17 degrees 30 minutes
Longitude: 149 degrees 49 minutes
Location: Cook’s Bay, Moorea (Society Islands, French Polynesia)
We anchored in Cook’s Bay in pouring rain and fog this morning about 11:00 AM. Since midnight, the weather continued to get worse and worse. We had one squall right after another during the night, packing winds to 40+ knots, and as the sun rose, the heaven’s broke loose. It rained so hard that when we passed Tahiti and we saw only a glimpse of land. We were almost in the approach for the pass into Cook’s Bay before we could Moorea. We found someone (a boat named Diva) on VHF Channel 16 in Cook’s Bay, however, who gave us good directions. We entered the well marked pass and immediately the seas calmed down, but the rain kept coming. We chose this landfall because it is an easy bay to enter and lived up to its reputation. Stillpoint will be coming in around 9:00 PM tonight and we will be guiding them by VHF.
We did not realize what a toll the passage had taken on us until we ate lunch and started to relax. Every muscle in our bodies was aching from the constant struggle to remain upright and not be thrown across the cockpit in the tremendous winds we have had all the way here from the Marquesas. We are just grateful that we were able to run with the wind all the way here which made the high winds at least safe. We slept all afternoon and feel much better now . . . so much better that we are heading over to the Club Bali Hai Hotel for Happy Hour! We are truly happy to be here, safe and sound.
The bay here is named for Captain Cook who came here before us, landing here in 1769. We seem to be following his path around the Pacific. His ship, the Endeavor, actually anchored in Opunohu Bay next door and he visited here in his long boat. More history and full report on the beauty of this place tomorrow once the sun comes out and the clouds go away. The rain has stopped and even with the low clouds, you can see that this is a spectacular place.