I'm on a mooring in the mooring fields at Niue. Yay!
I left Beveridge Reef on Saturday morning with nice wind, 10 knots from the ENE. As I was on a bearing of around 290 degrees, just north of west, that wind was very sailable and I made pretty good time. The forecast was for the wind to back around to the north over the day, with N or NNE winds overnight. The strength was forecast to stay in the 10 knot range, a little less overnight and then have it fall to light and eventually light from random directions Sunday evening. Unfortunately I got the light from random direction wind last night. At 1am Luckness was moving through the water at 1.9 knots, against a 0.5 knot current making little progress. At that speed, I wouldn't have been in Niue for quite a long time. I was hoping the forecast wind would return so I left the boat to make her slow way toward Niue for an hour, after which things slowed down a little. I started motoring at 2am and ended up motoring the rest of the way, around 12 hours with the engine on. Its noisy, its harder to sleep, when the engine is on it feels like there are so many more things that can go wrong and I worry about them - but Luckness' diesel engine has given nothing but reliable service. Without the engine I would still be 50 or 60 miles away, and perhaps days from arriving. The wind was in the range 0 to 3 knots from every direction of the compass. Old school sailors would still be out there, waiting patiently for the wind to arrive again. Instead, I'm here, on a mooring, getting ready to eat an early dinner, maybe drink a beer (no beer for me while on passages), and sleep soundly.
I'll check into the country Monday morning so I don't have much to report. The coastline is very green! The island isn't very large, Niue is the smallest country in the world. The island is also quite flat - it rises perhaps a few hundred feet and then is flat from that point on. Once I start exploring I'll take along my camera and forward a few pics. Which reminds me, I need to blog about Beveridge Reef and post a few pictures of that as well. I'll try to get to that this week - I've read that I will be able to have internet on the boat while on a mooring here. That would make updating things a little easier.
All is well. Well, perhaps I'm a little tired, that should soon be fixed.
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