Worrall Travel R's

Worrall Travel R's
Roz and Russ

Worrall Travel R's - Kicking the Bucket List

My photo

We are the Worrall Travel R's Roz and Russ Worrall. Our goal before we "kick the bucket" is to see as much of the world as we are able, learn about world cultures, experience making friends around the world, and share goodwill and what we learn with others. WE HOPE YOU JOIN US VIA THE BLOG ON OUR TRAVELS.

We started our world travels in 1969 in VW camper van in the USA, Canada, and Europe, but didn't actively blog about our travels until 2009 aboard our sailing vessel SV Worrall Wind, a 44 ft Nauticat Ketch.  On September 5, 2009 we left San Francisco and took a left at the Golden Gate to Explore the World.

From to Sea to Land
After almost 4 years of cruising Mexico and the South Pacific, we sold our beloved boat in Australia, 2013. The Worrall Travel R's are continuing our travels around by many other means of conveyance -boats,trains, planes, sometimes camels, elephants, rickshaws, and hot air balloons.. 

Russ is a retired engineer, optometrist, professor from U.C. Berkeley. Roz is a retired computer programmer/analyst, educator, (teacher, administrator, professional developer). 

Our Mantra:
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
~ Mark Twain

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Worrall Wind Update - Holed up on Raiatea

Sunset - Looking West from Fare on Huahine
UTC/Local Time: July 31 0400/July 30 1800
Latitude: 16 49.061 S
Longitude: 151 24.957 W

Update:
After looking at the Grib files and the weather forecast, we decided to leave Huahine on Friday and make our way across the channel to Raiatea. The forecast for Saturday and Sunday called for high winds, 12 foot seas and rain. Friday, although many superstitious sailors would refuse to take leave on this day, was the only reasonable window until the middle of next week. Our other choice was to stay put in Huahine.

Unfortunately, the Fare anchorage is beneath a mountain that Russ named Rainmaker. Fare anchorage can be quite gusty even in good weather.  We couldn't imagine what it would be like in the predicted high winds, so we came across the channel.
 
Waves break to the side of us as we came through Irihu Passe
We motored the whole way so that we could get through Passe Irihu and anchored behind the reef early in the afternoon. We have taken refuge in a bay called Faaroa. It provides reasonable protection, although we have measured winds of 37.8 knots and the anchor chain moans and groans. The wind calmed down last night, and has alternated between periods of calm and high winds all day today.  Of course there are also accompanying rain squalls.
 
We could have moved to a more quite anchorage, but we heard on the radio about how crowded this anchorage is. There are thankfully only a few boats here, so we don't have to worry about anyone dragging down on us.

Today, while securely anchored despite the high winds and fetch coming down the mouth of the bay, we have been listening to an audio book, Timeline by Michael Crichton, while working on projects. The sun has now gone down and it is relatively quiet. The worst of the weather is supposed to pass through late tonight and tomorrow morning then gradually abate through Tuesday or Wednesday.
There is no Internet in this bay, Drat! If you wish to contact us, please use our sailmail address and we will download by radio. In the meantime, we are reading, listening to books, splicing lines, working on projects, and just relaxing. I've actually been reading about and playing with photoshop.

All is well on Worrall Wind.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Worrall Wind Update - Exploring Huahine

Taking Care of Business and Exploring Huahine, Society Islands
Sunday, July 25, 2010 - On the Hook and Why is the water pump on?

After our crossing from Moorea, we arrived in Fare Bay in Huahine, dropped the hook, did some cleanup and spent the afternoon and early evening just relaxing and napping. When it was time for bed, I took first shower. The shower sump pump worked fine, but I couldn't hear the volume of water exiting the boat that I should have. Finally, I heard the water being pumped out of the boat and enjoyed the hot water shower. After my shower the water pump came on and didn't seem to go off. I brought the matter to Russ's attention. Are slow start to shower sump pump and fresh water pump not turning off unrelated or related? It's late. We decide to turn off the fresh water pump and sleep on it. We were planning on renting a car in the morning, but looks like we have some maintenance work to do instead.

Monday, July 26, 2010 - Fixing things and Grocery Store Adventure

We get up early in the morning, after a night of howling winds and us checking the anchor alarm frequently. We held tight. Russ starts to sleuth down the water pump problem.

Good news: We have an extra pump, if the pump is the problem.

Bad news: Our dry bilge has several gallons of unaccounted for water.

Good news: It's not sea water. Bad news: Shower sump overflowed once again. Not sure why, maybe it lost its prime during the rolling seas.  Russ cleans out the bilge. But there is more water in the bilge than could possibly have come from the shower sump overflow.

Good news: Water pump is working. Good pressure at the pump.

Bad news: There is not enough pressure building to fill the hoses. There is a leak somewhere.

Good news: There is no leak forward of the pump.

Bad news: That means the leak is behind the pump (engine room, aft head or shower).

Good news: Russ finds the leak in the aft head cupboard. A T-joint stressed out during our rocking and rolling. My shower blew it off the hose. Russ has the right replacement. We are fixed and just need to dry out by 11:00 a.m.

Moral of the story: Turn off the fresh water pump at night and when we leave the boat. (Fortunately, we were onboard when the fixture broke and we could hear the water pump on. Had we not been on board, the water pump would have continued pumping all of the water (250 gallons) out of water tank into the bilge. Hopefully, the bilge pump would have pumped it overboard as soon fast as it was being pumped into the bilge or we could have had major problems with flooding on the boat.) So many lessons to learn.

We still are having problems connecting our WIFI system to local provider. Seems to have gone haywire after Russ fixed the gooseneck on the mast….hmmmm. More later on that. We had done enough fixing for the day and went ashore to walk around.


 Grocery Store Adventure

The cruising guide said there was a fabulous grocery store on this little island. It was not an exaggeration. Actually, the variety of merchandise was amazing rivaling the biggest Carrefour (similar to Walmart) in Papeete. We even found things here we couldn't find in Papeete or Mexico……Denty Moore Stew, Chilie Con Carne, etc. Who would have evers thought we could get so excited about these little things!

We also found some powdered yogurt mix call Eaziyo from New Zealand. Of course, I had to buy a few packages.After our exciting grocery store adventure, we met up with friends on The ROAD, for happy hour, then returned from the dingy dock on shore to the boat for some chilie con carne.

Dinghy Dock in Fare
Russ could hardly wait. I made up a batch of vanilla yogurt and could hardly wait for 8 hours while it thickened.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010 - Rain  Forest Walk

The vanilla yogurt was delicious! I'm going back for some more of those packages before we leave here. We took a lovely walk with friends from The Road into the rainforest today just outside of town. And of course, it rained while we were there, but the canopy was so thick, we could hardly feel the rain, only the secondary drips as the rain slid off the leaves to the forest floor. The variety and beauty of the vegetation here in Polynesia is incredible. Here are some photos of our rainforest exploration.

Shirely, Taffy from SV The ROAD, and Russ





After our morning walk, we returned to the boat. Russ started sleuthing out the problem for the WIFI problem. Basically, the router was working fine, but the "bullet" that picks up the signal from the antenna didn't seem to be working. Next step is to investigate the wires in the mast. Did Russ nick or pin them when he was repairing the gooseneck?

We decided he had done enough work for one day, so we spent the rest of the afternoon snorkeling in a nearby reef and getting our exercise by swimming from the reef back to the boat towing the dinghy behind us, just like Jack LaLane swimming from Alcatraz towing a rowboat with the line in his teeth……well not quite, but it still brought that image to mind.

We are renting a car tomorrow with Shirley and Taffy on The ROAD. This cruising couple is from South Africa. They have been cruising for ten years. We met them and their crew member,Collin a fellow countryman , and their very intelligent parrot Rubbish while we were moored in Tahiti. The ROAD stands for the Royal Order of the Ancient Druid. Taffy claims to be the ancient druid and is the head of the royal order.


Wednesday, July 18, 2010 - Island Tour

We got an early start with Taffy and Shirley for the rental car agency on Wednesday morning, but got there later than we intended because there was quite a bit going on in town. We could hear the Tahitian drumming coming from the pier.

A dozen women dressed in their Polynesian finery with headdresses and arms filled with fragrant leis were waiting for the approaching cruise ship, the Tahiti Nui.



La Head Director

Passengers disembarked and were greeted with leis and the two cheek kisses. Turns out that the passengers on this boat were primarily the international bicycle teams participating in the Polynesian Bicycle Race. Each day, the cyclists ride around the different islands. We were to see them later in the day on our car tour around the island.  This was a fun way to start our day!

Highlights of our tour around the island were:

Maeva - is an excavated archeological site of ancient Marae (Island Royalty, Religious site). On Huahine, the various chiefs from around the island had all of their ceremonial homes and religious sites in one place instead of sprinkled around the islands near their own villages. It's an unusual practice, but makes for an impressive excavation and archeological place of interest. We wondered through the sites for about an hour. Ancient fish traps are still in use today outside of the town.
Ancient Terraced Gardens and Foundations


Shallow rooted palm trees lean into the wind

Fish Traps Still in Use Today

Coral City - On the end of a peninsula on the west side of the island near the now defunct Sofitel hotel, we went for a snorkel. A local woman, Michele, suggested that we not wear our fins, but sandals into the water. She pointed out to what looked like a kilometer away to the reef and asked if we could see the exposed coral reefs sticking out of the water. We could. She said we could wade out to them and because of the current, it would be better for us to keep our feet on the ground so we didn't drift south.

Had Michele not suggested that we go out to the rocks, we would never have ventured that far from shore on our own. It was truly spectacular to see the variety of fish, coral, anemones, sea cucumbers, clams, and spiney urchins in the crystal clear water. After our snorkel we got back in the car and continued on our tour.


Blue-eyed Eels - Just before crossing the bridge that joins Huahine Nui to Huahine Iti, we came to a little village with a fresh water stream that was nearly dry. Purportedly, on the downriver side of the bridge that crosses the stream, there live some blue-eyed eels that are revered on Huahine. By the looks of the very little amount of water in the stream, we wondered if the eels were still alive and about.

To our amazement they were. A tour group came through and had a bucket of meats that they started to through out to the eels. Thee eels, many four feet long, sucked in the meat like slimey vaccuum cleaners. The tour guide was sure to keep her fingers out of the way. When the eels got close, she and her tour would pet them. We were happy to stand on shore and watch the whole experience. And yes the eels do have blue eyes.

Tour de Polynesia - If you have ever seen bicyclists racing, you know how fast the experience whizzes by. When we stopped at a high overlook on Huahine Iti, we were the only car on the overlook.



Within minutes the overlook parking area filled with cars and people. The cyclists were coming up the hill and we had front row seats. Fortunately because they were huffing and grinding up hill, we got a bit more time to watch them before they crested and disappered in a flash on the downhill side. It was very exciting.
Here They Come!

Rah! Rah!

And,  There They Go!


Vanilla Plantation - On the eastern side of Huahine Iti, we stopped at a vanilla plantation. The owner showed us his crops and how the vanilla bean is grown. He only spoke French so we just got a little information from him.  We will have to learn more.   And of course, we each had to buy some fresh vanilla beans.
Vanilla Vines in Screened Greenhouse



We returned to Fare, dropped off our car, and proceeded to happy hour. We had had a wonderful day. Our friends Gene and Gloria on Pincoya had come into the bay and joined us for happy hour.

Thursday, July 29, 2010
Last night, the Tahiti Nui, loaded with all of the cyclists disappeared out the reef while we slept. We decided to stay close to the boat and relax today. Tomorrow, we plan to cross the channel to Raietea and Taaha, about 20 miles away.

In the meantime, Russ is still sleuthing down the problem of our WIFI. It turns out that he didn't pin the wire inside the mast while fixing the gooseneck, but he had nicked it breaking one of the wires inside the casing. He soldered it together and is now seeing if that will be enough to solve the problem. We hope so since direct connect to the Internet is painfully slow.

This afternoon, we will make one last trip to the grocery store and maybe do one more snorkel adventure.

Huahine is not to be missed.  We have had a great time here.

All is well on Worrall Wind.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Worrall Wind Update July 24-25, 2010 Huahine Bound

Arriving in Huahine, end of the rainbow, after another white knuckle adventure.

UTC/Local Time: 2000/1000 July 25
Latitude: 16 51.210 S
Longitude:151.05.117 @
Course Over Ground: 314
Wind Direction: East, South East 18-25 knots of wind
Sea Swell: 10 feet East
Starboard tack, beam reach
Sky: partially cloudy
Barometric Pressure: 1019

Update:

July 24 - 7:30 p.m.

We are currently at sea sailing between Moorea and Huahine. We have traveled 20 of the 80 miles to our first outside mark which according to our sailing calculator we should reach around 7:30 a.m. tomorrow morning. We have a stiff breeze of 18-25 knots of wind on our starboard stern quarter, broad reach. The sea swells are 9-10 feet, coming more towards our beam. The boat is rocking from side to side, and every few minutes a set of rollers pass under the boat heeling us to port where we are taking some water over the bottom rail. Our hydrovane (Hydie), windvane steering system is working well.

We have less than 50 percent of the jib out, and a triple reefed main, no mizzen because of our almost downwind sail. Even with the sails reefed, not only for comfort, but because we are trying to keep our speed down to 5 knots, we are coursing along between 5.5 and 6 knots. We are moving well, although the rocking is a bit uncomfortable...so what else is new? After having been in port and on land, this is our first overnight passage in 2 months, and just the two of us again. We were both a bit anxious with nervous energy. That always seems to be the way of things after having stayed in one place for so long. The sail to Moorea on Friday was a nice warm-up.

Moorea had a beautiful moonrise last night and clear skies this morning.
I have first watch this evening. It's pretty early for Russ to be sleeping, but he is trying. We didn't sleep too well last night because there were some party boats in the bay last night playing music and talking loudly until 2:00 or so in the morning. Also our anchor alarm went off a few times. When we got up this morning it appeared that our anchor had drug a little, getting us a little to cozy with Pincoya, so we pulled up the anchor and repositioned ourselves for the day. It was a good thing because the wind really piped up by 10:00 a.m. and we were firmly anchored.

Our sea life entertainment today included flying fish, a pod of 4 dolphins swimming through the anchorage, and a white spotted ray jumping about 4 feet out of the water within 10 feet of the boat. Went ashore to find a geocache, but unfortunately we did not find it, not for the lack of trying though. I think the cache was gone. The last cache seeker also could not find it on July 9, according to the online log.


Dragon of the West & Out the Golden Gate and Hang A Left Travel Bugs outside the geocache that had disappeared.

Too Bad!  But they got a nice view from the beach of Worrall Wind.


July 25 - 12:30 a.m.
 The wind and waves have gotten progressively stronger. Some of the rollers are moving incredibly fast, one right after another, mounting up to be super sized and breaking as they roll past, under us, in front of us, or worse from the side. One of the large rollers that hit us from the side popped open the v-berth door and it slammed back against the galley wall making such a racket that it woke Russ about a half hour before I would have awakened him.

We discuss our progress. Even though the seas are rough we're doing fine, but about 4 miles to the right of our course line. I've been having to hand steer the last two hours because of the shifting winds and the rolling seas that keep taking us off our wind line and Hydie is having difficulty recovering. We need to tack, but for right now, we'll stay the course we are on. The moon is still out, but there are more clouds coming up behind us.

1:00-3:00 a.m.
I'm sleeping downstairs in the main salon trying to keep from rolling from side to side with pillows squished behind my knees and back and in front of me. Russ holds the course for two hours then the wind really starts to pickup and shift around. Yes, you guessed. A big honking squall is on our port quarter and starting to obscure the moon. The boat is rocking wildly and we are recording gusts of 40 knots, 30 being the sustained winds. Sure glad we are triple reefed. Even with that we are now moving at almost 8 knots and the waves are well over ten feet, and we are rocking toe rail to toe trail with water coming over both sides and streaming down the deck. By this time, I am up with PFD, gloves, shoes, and long pants.

3:00-3:30 a.m.
We don't like it. There is no end in sight of the black squall line behind us. It's scary as hell, but we're dry inside and the boat is taking it like a champ, even if we are white knuckled. Hydie is needing constant help now.

3:30-5:00 a.m.
 During a lull of 25 knots, (ha ha, seems like it is hardly windy), we clip in and go outside on the fantail (back deck) and take over steering from there. I go out first and secure the upper helm. Russ follows. We sit for a few minutes getting a read on the situation. We have a cruise liner, the Paul Gauguin, coming up on our rear. He should be crossing behind us less than 4 miles. Russ calls him on the radio and he sees us on the radar. We pull in the jib and see if we can get a bit more on course as we keep rounding up pulling us farther off course. This helps a bit, but it slows our speed down considerably and in the end slows us too much for us to either gybe or come about, which we need to do. So we rest a little as the wind howls around us, and we basically fore reach (into the swell and close to the wind).

We wait for the wind to subside. It doesn't. Paul Gauguin passes behind us. The black squall line is still there with no light coming from the horizon It's a dry squall, only a few rain drops. We decide to turn the motor on and power around. It take Russ a few minutes to go in the engine room and open the thru hulls. The engine comes to life...such a reassuring sound. We power the boat through a gybe, put the engine in neutral, reset the jib, and adjust the windvane. At last we are moving back to our course line.
The wind and seas are now consistently on a broad reach on a port tack. Eventually we will need to gybe again.

5:00-7:00 a.m.
I go back to bed. The boat courses along at 5-6 knots, wind around 25. At 7:30 we gybe again. The seas and wind are still strong, but it always look better in the daylight and the sun scares away the squalls. We can see Huahine in the distance.

10:00 a.m.
We are within a few miles now of Huahine and our outside mark. We are looking forward to a quiet anchorage on the lee side of the island and a little rest. It's been an exhilarating ride. I need to post this while still in open waters as I don't know what the radio signal will be once we are in the Bay.

12:30 p.m.
I am unable to send the log at 10:00, so I postpone until I have an Internet connection in port.  We are now at anchor in Huahine.  There is a large mountain at the base of the  bay creating clouds and winds.  Because we are behind the reef, there is no swell, but the winds here are pretty stiff.  We don't care, we drop the hook.  We're done for the day.

All is well on Worrall Wind.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Worrall Wind Update - On the move again July 24, 2010

UTC/Local Time: 2000/10:00 a.m.
Latitude: 17 29.448 S
Longitude: 149 51.093 W


Update:

We left Tahiti yesterday, July 23, 2010, one week after we returned from the states. During that week, we finished up a lot of fix-it projects. We stained and mounted our new spice and wine glass racks, installed replacement parts for the refrigerator, installed the new lid for the freezer, installed the repaired autopilot computer, fixed the gooseneck,


                                                             Gooseneck on the Mast

 made new pillow covers and table cloths from some Tahitian fabric, scraped the waterline of sea gunk, washed down the boat, provisioned, stowed stuff for passage, and refueled.
We load about 200 gallons of diesel into the tanks

                                                                  Russ getting fuel

and 30 gallons of gasoline in our jerry cans, about $600 US, as we left yesterday. Gene and Gloria on Pincoya were right in front of us on the fuel dock headed to Moorea as well. We said a sad farewell to Betty and Herb on SV Sula. Their boat has had transmission/V drive problems since leaving Mexico. They have been in Papeete nearly 8 weeks. The mechanics might be able to do a temporary fix by tooling a part to keep the oil from mixing, but the real problem is the incompatibility of the two components. They are ultimately going to have to have V drive or both replaced in New Zealand or big boat yard. In the meantime their visa is going to run out here in a couple of weeks. It's a sour pickle. Wish we could have brought the parts back to them from the states when we were there.


Our sail to Moorea was wonderful. We left the Papeete channel at 1:30 and arrived in Oponohu at 4:30. When we left Tahiti we had some large waves, but not a lot of wind. Eventually, the wind kicked up to 8 knots then 15, then 20+, and Worrall Wind was coursing over ground at 7-8 knots. The swell was 6-8 feet from the stern quarter. It was nice to be on the move again, but oh how quickly we forget how everything is in motion while we are sailing. We'll have to get our sea legs back again. We arrived and anchored to Pincoya, enjoying an evening with Gene and Gloria.

                                                                 Pincoya at Sunset

Today, we plan to snorkel, find a geocache on the beach, rest, and leave for Huahine around 4:00 this afternoon. It's 90 miles to the harbor. It will take us 18 hours at 5 knots, 15 hours at 6 knots, and 13 hours at 7 knots. The wind forecast is for winds 15 plus knots. By leaving in the afternoon, we will get there sometime tomorrow morning. If the winds are really fast, we'll slow the boat down or heave too outside the harbor if it is still dark. We should have almost a full moon tonight. We'll turn Worrall Wind Spot on so if you are interested in tracking us you can. Hopefully Spot is working.

All is well on Worrall Wind.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Wedding, Tattoo and Birthdays! Now Back in Tahiti.

         Grandpa Archie, Grandma LaVerne, Russ, Roz, Neal, Abby,  Jessica,  and Garyn


Back in Tahiti

After three action-packed weeks in California, we are back in Tahiti to resume our South Pacific and world adventure.  Worrall Wind waited patiently for our return and with the exception of harbor grime, she is in good shape.  We expect to start our regular reports once we are underway and have something other than the daily chores and fix it projects to share.   Maybe next week.   Visits home are always bitter sweet.  It's always hard to say good-bye and to miss seeing folks we just couldn't connect with.  Thank you all for such a wonderful visit. 

Wedding
The primary reason we returned to California was for our daughter Abby's wedding.  She married Neal Young on July 3, up at the ShinneyBoo Resort, near Eagle Lakes trail head on Donner Summit.  The wedding was a four day family and friend celebration.  It just couldn't have been better.  We all had a great time, and we are delighted to have Neal as our son-in-law and his familoy as ours.  Here are some wedding highlights!


Abby and Katie Rehearsal - best friends "sisters" from babyhood.

          



Brother Mike, Dad Ken, and Groom Neal getting ready       







 Katie sharing her wedding necklace with Abby.  It was a gift from her mom Cathy who died two years ago.  Cathy was Abby's second mom and this was a touching and poignant moment.


                                  Neal's Mom Henny dusting Abby with glittering fairy dust.


                                                           Grandma Vernie and Abby


                                  Abby pinning corsage on Neal's Grandma OMA from Holland

 

                                    Abby and Noodles the Flower Girl

      Abby and her proud Dad, Russ, coming down the aisle to Somewhere Over the Rainbow.


                               Abby and Neal's vows were beautiful.  Friend Eric officiating.




                                            Whoo Hoo!

                                          Radiance, Love, Joy

 
                         Abby and Neal gently fed each other.  No cake in the face.  
                                                      Chocolate brownies & ice cream.



Birthdays and Tattoos

We also celebrated birthdays while at ShinneyBoo, both our son Garyn's and mine.  Garyn was born on my 29th birthday.  He has always been my best birthday gift, but this year I got a close second.  Here's a little poem to commemorate my 62nd birthday and the gift we gave ourselves before returning stateside.

Happy Birthday to me.
I get Social Security.

What else do you do at 62?
I sailed to Tahiti,
swam with the rays,
and got a tattoo!






 And yes, it hurt!











WhooHoo!  Russ got one too!


Be happy.  Stay well.  Hope to see you along the way or when we return.

All is well on Worrall Wind.