Sailing around New Zealand

Emily is sailing solo around New Zealand on her 32 foot yacht Honey, from Lyttelton south down the east coast, around the bottom of Stewart Island, up the west coast of the South and North Islands and down the east coast back to Lyttelton. The whole adventure is expected to take 3 months. This blog will provide updates as I travel (when I have mobile reception to upload).

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Another Day in Paradise, Bligh Sound (23 February)

I headed out from Alice Falls soon after sunrise, and tried a bit of fishing on the way – I needed something for dinner. A Jock Stewart (which ended up as bait) and a dog fish later and I gave up, with plans to find somewhere else to fish before the end of the day. There was a nice breeze in George Sound, so I unfurled the headsail and sailed out at a reasonable pace, with some really large dolphins following Honey very closely for part of the way. And then the wind died out completely, so the sail was furled back in and I motored out of the sound and onto Bligh Sound, glassy calm with a small swell all the way. This was meant to be SW 15 knots and 25 knots offshore, but again it appears the wind didn't eventuate. And it was hot, I had to get into shorts and T-shirt, I think this has been the warmest day since I left the southern part of Stewart Island. As I turned into Bligh Sound I eyed the point I was passing – Chasland Head with a submerged rock just off it – this looks to be the perfect place to catch dinner. The line was down for less than a minute when I got a large cod which I reeled in, that would do me for two large meals. Being greedy and dropping the line again, I snagged and lost the tackle, so headed on in the glassy calm waters into Bligh. As I rounded Turn Round Point, the wind picked up and it was a quick sail down the sound, so quick I almost missed Kellys Anchorage as I had my head down filleting the cod. A quick look and it was too windy and tight for me to be comfortable attempting to anchor, so I headed down to the end of the sound and anchored up in Bounty Haven – another beautiful spot, mostly out of the wind, but this equals hundreds of sandflies, about 5 of which are walking across the computer screen now! I was famished, which was sorted out with a couple of very large cod sandwiches, then settled into an afternoon of enjoying the sun, drying out some of my damp squabs and even washing my hair – a real luxury.

Tomorrow is onto Milford Sound – this I am told from other yachties is mega touristy, it will make quite a shock from the peaceful and remote areas I have got used to over the last 6 weeks. If I'm lucky I may not be there very long, I would be happy if I was there for only a night – I need to fuel up, fill up the water tank, check the long term weather forecast, and if I can it would be nice to do a load of laundry, and then if the weather is right I could head up the coast to Golden Bay. I suspect though that there will be a few days of waiting until a suitable southerly arrives that I can jump on the back of and sail north.

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