The Chatham Islands and beyond

The Chatham Islands and beyond
Thursday afternoon and Friday were spend on the Chatham Islands. We entered the Petre Bay early afternoon on Thursday and went at anchor close to the Oosterschelde a few hours later. A shore party was quickly assembled and as the voyage crew went to explore the town, Gijs went to meet with the locals as they had arranged some activities for us for the next day. A bus ride, a whole or half  day with highlights around the Island and a guide to tell about the history of the Island.  Our voyage crew was met with a warm welcome as well and got offered a minivan for the next day.. they could not refuse so the next morning some went on their own big adventure and others went into the bus. Due to some turn of events they ended up all together again and by the end of the day, they were safely back on board. By that time the Europa was also there at anchor with us .

We had dinner on board, were too late for the pub at night, but got a lovely cup of tea instead. If anybody on the Islands reads this: We would like to thank everybody on the Chatham Islands for their kind welcome and the time they spend on us! It was amazing to be there and hopefully we will be back someday!

This morning we set off again. Relaxed breakfast, reef in the mainsail and off we went. Outside the bay there was a strong breeze, but all downwind. We gibed around the island and set course for a tourist-like route to Pitt Island and Pyramid Island, where the big albatrosses live. Amazing to see, SO MANY! Our picture competition for the best Albatross picture was definitely on! Big cameras, different angles and then hoping the pictures of the fast moving birds were sharp. I do believe we got some good ones!

Pyramid island turned out to have a massive cave inside it, way up high out of the reach of waves, a perfect bird sanctuary. We passed it around 16:00 hours and then went off into the deep blue sea! No more land from here on, until we have rounded Cape Horn and come up to the Falkland Islands. Amazing. We still have almost 5000 miles ahead of us, right now we are doing 6,6 knots. It is a strange feeling, a surreal feeling that we have had our last stop before the Horn. A sailors dream and dread. Our team seems ready for it. Tonight is our first night of foul weather, it is raining slightly and it is a lot colder than previous nights. So the foul weather gear is tested and layering of clothes is tested even more. So far so good!

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