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Summer in New Zealand has been awesome and we have been making the most of it getting outside and keeping active! Whilst we are back into a home schooling routine, we’ve also been getting heaps of ‘outside jobs’ done that require dry and sunny conditions. Between school and boat projects, there is however plenty of time to soak up the sunshine whilst out hiking or making the most of the still warmer water temperatures to go free diving, swimming, kiting, paddling or to clean the hull ;-)
We had two crew, Becky & Kira, join us for a week in February and with an outlook of favourable summer weather we set off for the Bay of Islands. Light winds and calm seas allowed us to stop en route at the Poor Knight Islands which was fantastic. The Poor Knight Islands is a Marine Reserve which means you aren’t allowed to fish or do anything that would disrupt the cycle of nature or the natural behaviour of the fish etc. You can imagine how pristine it is and teaming with wildlife.
It was awesome jumping in the water having huge snapper and kingfish casually cruising by whilst we explored caves and took in all the underwater sea life around us. There were a number of tour operators there when we got there but within an hour or two we had the place just about all to ourselves! It was a bit cruel for my two fishermen to watch all the huge fish all around the boat without being able to try catch any of them but being able to witness the positive impact the marine reserve has had helped them get through this stressful period in their fishing lives :-) Here are a few pics:
Early the next morning we lifted anchor to make our way to the Bay of Islands and our next Bay for the day! Much to our delight we caught a fresh tuna on the way, so dinner was already sorted ;-) With a lot of awesome walks on Urupukapuka Island we decided to drop anchor there for a bit of exploring. We wanted to show our crew a few cool spots in the Bay of Islands, so we moved on most days from one spot to another, most of them just a short distance away. That really is the beauty of the Bay of Islands. A million little anchorages all close together! We spent some time at Moturua Island, went to Paradise Bay on Urupukapuka Island and eventually sailed back straight down to Whangarei to spend a day there hiking and relaxing as well.
The week went super fast, mostly because our crew Becky and Kira were so easy going and keen to explore and try out new things! They sailed, learnt to navigate, ate fresh fish & mussels, hiked, paddle boarded, kayaked, snorkelled, swam, fished, relaxed and most of all we all had a great week together and shared lots of laughs! They are both continuing their travels of New Zealand on land and we hope to see them again sometime somewhere on this beautiful planet!
You can read about their time aboard Camara here.
A few more pics of our week:
It was awesome to have a break of boat projects and making the most of this fantastic summer weather we’ve been having but it’s also time to focus back on gearing up for the 2020 cruising season! It’s March already and only a few months left before the great migration north is happening again - pretty exciting to be honest!
We are busy with a few upgrades to the boat that we didn’t have time to do before we left last season, such as additional powerpoints, extra fans, solar powered vents in each head (bathroom), outdoor shower at the transom, new swim ladder on the transom and and and... Some people say ‘you must be finished by now’, well after living afloat for nearly 20 years and on two very different boats I can tell you you are never ‘done’. There’s always an upgrade, repair or general maintenance awaiting - but it’s all worth it getting to live this lifestyle!
2020 will see a few awesome trips and expeditions up in the islands and we are already fully crewed for most of our time there, so if you are keen to join us during September or October, then get in touch! Coming aboard sharing costs is far cheaper than a booked holiday or chartering a boat and will be the experience of a lifetime!
Anyway, I hope you are enjoying your week wherever you are and watch this space for updates on our new ‘upgrades’ and getting ready for the cruising season!