Monday, October 30, 2017

A day of Snorkeling and exploring the Kingdom of Tonga

Deb persuades Gregg to join her in the water and here is some of what we see.

Sea urchins and some
funny little fish.

More fish - still little.

Colorful scenery

This rascal is called  Crown of 
Thorns and is blamed for eating and
destroying corals.   I'm no scientist
but I believe it is a starfish.

We sail for Vakaeitu Island

Seeing psychedelic rocks along the way

Meeting David as he prepares to host
a group of tourists for dinner.

No this is next week's Tongan feast.
We don't touch her,

But paddle home into a special sunset.

Drive thru Tonga Oct. 2017

We team up with Marisa and Bavo to rent a car and explore the "wrong side of the shore" on the islands of Vava'u and Pangaimotu.


October and November are Spring in Tonga and pineapple season.  Though the fruit is small, it is the sweetest you've ever tasted, promise.

Marisa and Bavo are Kiwis from the South Island.
They were originally from Belgium and now live
on the ocean and develop software on their boat


Marisa is the designated driver with a definite preference for BAD roads

and beautiful overlooks.

We are delighted they choose to spend a few hours with us and brighten our days.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

South Island, New Zealand

Along with friends Lorraine and Kellye, occasionally of Denver, Colorado, we drive to Wellington, stopping at many attractions along the way.  The Ferry takes us from Wellington to The South Island where we find penguins, seals, ruins of recent earthquakes, majestic fiords, glaciers and more.  It is a grueling drive with occasional rain but we find much to enjoy.

With a guide and a 'mother ship' we tackle the
Able Tazman Track for a day.  We are cooled
by the rain . . .

and warmed by the exercise.

We are awed by the view of Cape Foulwind,

impressed by Doubtful Sound

and the view of Fox Glacier.

we track down the elusive yellow-eye penguin.

Bay of Islands, Take II

So, we take it easy, moving our base of operations at a whim, anchoring in the shelter of the islands.

Otehi Bay hides a lodge area with paddle board
rentals and a cafĂ©.  We are anchored a mile away
over the hill so we work off the ice cream.

The ladies explore the rocks of the anchorage.

Gregg admires R. Tucker Thompson which takes
tourists on day trips in Bay of Islands.

Kalliope remains in the Bay of Islands Marina at the town of Opua while her crew explore the many attractions of New Zealand.

Cruising Bay of Islands

Kellye and Lorraine went sailing around the Bay of Islands spending several days aboard Kalliope.   We anchor in a quiet bay from time to time and paddle ashore for hiking or some snorkel in the almost warm water.

Lorraine guides our sturdy craft.

Kellye hoists the main sail.

Hole in the Rock at SE limit of the Bay of Islands.

Deb makes new friends during a walk on
Urupukapuka Island.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Northland, NZ

We go for a drive around the North Part of 
the North Island

Above are the Cavalli Islands.  We must visit by boat.

Known as 90 mile beach, It may not be that long
but there certainly is a lot of sand.  Sky is not bad.

Trees overhanging the beach well a different beach.

This is Christmas in the Antipodes!

Kauri tree about 2,000 years old

We sleep in the tent, not the car.  Imagine
Debbie and the Geezer!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

New Zealand and Safe Harbor

November 16, 2016  Kalliope Arrives New Zealand

This is a dawn view of New Zealand's Bay of Islands.  We are very happy to enter sheltered waters.

After sixteen days at sea, Deb unwinds by securing some of the lines we used on the passage.

The day after clearing customs and immigration we walk the
"Paihia Track" a couple miles between seaside villages.  It
starts as a marked path over gravel and rocks of the beach.

Depending on who you ask, these are
cormorants or skag.  (I asked Deb.)

It becomes a narrow track clinging
to the cliff just above the beach.

We break out of the brush to a couple of business 
and small clusters of homes.  This shot represents
Doug's Boatyard and Phil's Yacht Rental.

We duck back into the brush for the last hundred yards
before emerging to the commercial center of Opua.

The Okiato ferry approaches the Opua landing.