Midnight at its finest! 0000 hours, trainees and crew hauling anchor and saying goodbye to Great Barrier Island, making way for Poor Knights Islands…we have a long way to go.. What a fine sail it was, with a moderate South Westerly breeze to carry us there, and a sky full of stars.
Once the sails were up, and we set the lot, hot chocolates for all to warm our cold hands.. The trainees were divided into two four hour watches, and half went off to sleep and the other half plotted our course and steered us past the Mokohinaus and onwards to the Poor Knights.
0830 we arrived at the Knights. Scrambled eggs on toast and porridge for breakfast, then quickly got the dishes done. Rewaani, Peter, Daniel, Maui and Ngapunawai wasted no time to get in their wet suits on as they were very keen to dive this prestige marine environment the Poor Knights are renowned for. Upon entry we were soon surrounded by schools of Snapper, Blue maomao and sprat Kingfish. We spent about half an hour exploring the cliff faces before we entered Rikoriko Cave, one of the biggest sea cave’s in the Southern hemisphere.
In WWII allies hid a submarine in there. As we swam in the entrance at least ten 18 to 25 pound snappers followed us around was so surreal to see so many big fish in the one spot the visibility throughout the dive was exceptional seeing up to 50 meters easily. Once we were safely back on board, we wasted no time hoisting sails and setting our course for Whangamumu harbor, arriving there on the back of a rolling swell, at about 1600 hours.
A total of 75nm travelled since we set off at midnight last night. Everyone is pretty tired, and looking forwards to rounding Cape Brett, and getting into The Bay tomorrow… one last chance at catching some fish to take home.
Huge thanks for the messages from the family and friends. I have passed them on, and they are well recieved.. Everyone has heaps of stories for you when we get back, and are looking fowards to a proper shower, and our familiar beds… cheers!