Baie Hanaiapa and Baie Hanatekuua

Wednesday 5/8/13 19:30 09 42.084 S 138 59.572 W http://maps.google.com/?z=7&t=k&q=loc:09 42.084S 138 59.572W Baie Hanaiapa and Baie Hanatekuua Posting by Barb: Every day brings something new and we keep saying this is the greatest place so far. Monday morning early we arrived in Baie Hanaiapa. There was a neat little town there and we very quickly got our dingy going and headed for town. We walked the shoreline of the town to one end where Dennis found a local sitting under a tree and he went over to be sociable. The man could speak a little English and they talked for a bit while I explored further. When I came back Dennis was eating Pamplemousse (sweet grapefruit type fruit) and had two more given to him ‘to go’. We explored the town some more and on the way back we were invited in to a local house which he called ‘Williams Yacht Club’. The local ‘William’ was an older man and lived simply in a little hut. We were invited in to his porch and were given cold water and bananas. He wanted us to sign his book. He had several notebooks there with hundreds of comments and signatures from sailors and yachters from all over the world. He gave us a full bushel of bananas, a Papaya and a branch filled with little hot peppers to take back to the boat with us. He wanted nothing in return just for us to sign his book! In the afternoon we were relaxing on the boat when Dennis spotted a couple Manta Rays swimming nearby. He very quickly put on his snorkeling gear and jumped in for a chance of a lifetime to swim with the Manta Rays. I first refused to go in with Dennis as it looked a little frightening. They were huge. There were about 7 of them and one in particular was about 10ft wide and much larger than Dennis. I knew if I didn’t go in I would regret it and Dennis would never let me live it down so I jumped in as well. I stayed close to Dennis (hung on to his shirt and nearly drowned him a couple f times when the rays would come very close) and watched the Rays swim about 2 to 3 feet away from us. They would come at us with mouth wide open catching all the plankton and then when they were near they would dive under and turn upside down showing off their white bellies. It was an experience of a lifetime. Dennis even touched the big one and the ray flipped his fin and dove under. I don’t think the ray liked to be that intimate with Dennis. The man has NO FEAR. On Tuesday we headed to Baie Hanatekuua. It was a beautiful bay with a white sandy beach at the head of the bay. We explored the island a little and took a walk into what used to be a coconut plantation. It now seems pretty deserted with only a few isolated locals living there. We took it easy and basically prepared for a Wednesday night 60 mile sail to the island Ua Huka. I cleaned the waterline of the boat and went out in the dingy to take some pictures. While preparing to haul the dingy back on the boat and deflate it for the night sail, I felt a searing pain on my arm and noticed a blue line. I tore it off and the burning where the blue line was just seemed to get worse. It swelled into a big welt. I was screaming at Dennis trying to figure out what the Hell just bit me. He explained that it was a small Portuguese Man-O-War. Dennis calmly told me that the stinging would eventually stop but if it continued he could pee on my arm and that would make the stinging stop. I opted for the pain. When I looked down at the water line of the boat I noticed that these blue creatures where everywhere. I am glad they weren’t there earlier when I was in the water cleaning the scum off. Nature is fascinating. How could such a small sea creature cause so much pain when only the day before we were swimming with 10 ft wide Manta Rays and we were perfectly safe.
So we are now night sailing and off to the next island in 10 knot warm winds on the beam with the main sail and the 160 jib. The stars are out and it is a wonderful sail. We should arrive there early dawn.

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One Response to Baie Hanaiapa and Baie Hanatekuua

  1. dave newberg says:

    Kinda left us hanging there, didn’t she?

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