March 23, 2013

oystercatchers, whitianga harbour

Oystercatchers at low tide, Whitianga Harbour
Whitianga, Coromandel Peninsula, NEW ZEALAND (March 2013)

March 16, 2013

makao, whitianga

We met the crew of SY Makao at the marina in Whitianga.  We have been in the same places over the last five years...  Bangkok, Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Kampot, Carnac, Lorient, La Trinité-Sur-Mer, Ushuaia, and Puerto Montt, but have never crossed paths until just now.

Crew of SY Makao  from L to R:  Martin (5 months), Katell, Thibaut (2 years) & Mathieu Hauet.
Whitianga, Coromandel Peninsula - NEW ZEALAND  (March 2013)

L to R:  Katell, Thibaut, Tormentina, James & Raivo.
Whitianga Marina, Coromandel Peninsula - NEW ZEALAND.  (March 2013)

SV Makao
Whitianga Marina, Coromandel Peninsula - NEW ZEALAND.  (March 2013)

March 15, 2013


First coat of primer on the keel.
Whitianga, Coromandel Peninsula, NEW ZEALAND.  (March 2013)

March 13, 2013

the cameron brothers

Our friend Kez Cameron, an 18' Skiff sailor from Tauranga, showed up at the boatyard in Whitianga yesterday.  He brought a surprise - two of his brothers, Logan and Garrick - to help James finish preparing Anasazi Girl's hull for new antifouling.  The four of them powered up and they finished taking off the bottom paint, every last bit of it. Thanks to the guys, we are now 5 days ahead of schedule.

Afterward, we had beer and New Zealand lamb, grilled in the backyard.  It was eaten with no utensils or plates, finger-lickin' Patagonia style.  Nice to have friends in this life.

Portrait of Kez Cameron. Whitianga, Coromandel Peninsula - NEW ZEALAND. (March 2013)
L to R:  Logan, Garrick, James, Kez, and the kids in front.
Whitianga, Coromandel Peninsula - NEW ZEALAND  (March 2013)

March 11, 2013

antifouling, whitianga marina

by James Burwick

Whitianga Marina travel-lift in the foreground with Whitianga's Scenic & Historic Reserve and Whitianga Harbour
in the background.  The marina participates in the New Zealand Clean Marina enviornmental program.

Down to the business of removing the old antifouling on Anasazi Girl.

It has been one year since the boat was last slipped onto the South African Navy Dockyard's hard-stand in Simons Town.   During that refit, I gave her a super thin, 3 liter coat of antifouling.  It’s much easier this time to get back to the layer of primer.

A Girl’s spot at the Whitianga Marina is super clean.  The natural environment surrounding it is quite stunning and very peaceful.  My mind works better when everything around me is clean and organized.  Maybe I am a bit neurotic like Jack Nicholson in As Good As It Gets.  I love his obsessive scene with the bars of soap.

Work has been a combination of wet sanding & dust-free machine sanding with a vacuum suction.  There is no fairing material on the hull, just a coat of primer over the carbon prepreg.  So I try to move slow, working deliberately and methodically, putting the pain in the box for later.

I don’t feel the aches in my body until I return to our Kiwi sleep-out.  When I finally stop moving and lay on a bed that my entire family fits on, what an appreciation I have for the simple comfort of a soft mattress.

Underside of Anasazi Girl's bow with half the anitfouling from South Africa taken down to the primer.

Anasazi Girl's autoclave carbon fin keel & lead bulb.

March 9, 2013

day in the life, whitianga

New brake pads for the road ahead.  Tormentina shooting my Canon 5D Mark II.
Laura Dekker & Dan Thielmann getting ready for a road trip on our grass driveway.
Whitianga, Coromandel Peninsula (March 2013)

James checking over A Girl's JP3 rudder bearings.
Whitianga Marina hard stand, Coromandel Peninsula (March 2013)

March 8, 2013

whitianga, mercury bay

T-Bird's purple polish & giant shells.
Whitianga, Mercury Bay

whitianga marina haul-out & our new box

by James Burwick

Anasazi Girl is on the hardstand.
We are preparing her for more wave sailing in the Southern Ocean.
All gear is off the boat.
1st interior deep clean.
Rudders out.
JP3 Rudder bearings out.
Gori propeller off.

The 5 of us are living two blocks away from the boatyard.
We have a one room place the Kiwis call a "sleep out."
A bed for us and mattresses on floor that make a giant bed for the kids.
Wow.  What a concept.  Nice change.
We are cooking on the Origo meth stove from the boat and have a BBQ in the yard.
A little black cat with yellow eyes comes by.
The grocery store is two blocks away.
We are walking not driving.

new zealand haul-out: whitianga, mercury bay

Last Saturday, Anasazi Girl was moved from the Viaduct Harbour in Auckland, down the eastern side of the Coromandel Peninsula to Mercury Bay.

Mercury Bay was originally called Te-Whanganui-o-Hei by the ancient Maoris, meaning the "Great Bay of Hei".  Hei was a Maori chief who brought his family there in 1350.

Its new name came from Captain James Cook.  He sailed the HMS Endeavor into Mercury Bay on November 3, 1769.  He entered this particular harbour to watch the Transit of Mercury, which was due to happen on the 9th.  (A transit of Mercury occurs when Mercury passes between the sun and the Earth, creating a black dot that moves along the face of the sun.)  A cairn on the eastern end of Cook's Beach marks the spot where the observations were made by Cook and his astronomer Charles Green.

Anasazi Girl sat on a mooring in Maramaratotara Bay (known today as Flaxmill Bay) for three nights with a view very similar to Cook's.

She was lifted out of the water by the Whitianga Marina thanks to the help of Darryl and Graham.  Anasazi Girl now sits on the hard-stand work area, awaiting a refit to prepare her for the next voyage.

Shakespeare Head and Maramaratotara Bay, Mercury Bay with HMS Endeavour
This engraving by an unknown artist appeared in "The Early History of New Zealand"
by R.A.A. Sherrin & J.H. Wallace. Brett's historical series edited by T.W. Leys, 1890

View of Shakespeare Head from Anasazi Girl's mooring.
Maramaratotara Bay (March 2013)
(Engraving image from

March 1, 2013

portrait of laura dekker, viaduct harbour

Laura Dekker on our dock at sunset.
Hobson West Marina, Viaduct Harbour, Auckland
February 28, 2013

ready for haul-out, coromandel peninsula

The Auckland CBD has been good to us.  In our four months here we had two very monumental & positive life experiences.

At the end of December, we gave birth to our third child - a beautiful little girl named Pearl.  She was born five days before Christmas.  I had a natural home birth at my midwife Tina Patrick's house in Ponsonby. My four year old daughter Tormentina stayed at my side for the entire labor, helped deliver the baby and Tina let her cut her cord.  Pearl moved aboard Anasazi Girl when she was less than a day old.

Through a dedicated effort to get the kids to the pool nearly every day, we gave Tormentina and Raivo a solid swimming foundation at the Auckland City Tepid Baths.  We worked with them one on one, then James took over teaching both of them once I gave birth.

Now they are extremely comfortable in the water, jumping into the deep end without hesitation, swimming underwater, and with help they are swimming the length of the 15 meter pool.  I see fire in Raivo's eyes as he tries to do tricks diving in.  At their own pace, cold water swimming, distance and strengthening their strokes are the next things to focus on.  James and I are no longer having nightmares about them drowning.

Pearl is now two months old, super strong, and healthy.

We are ready.

Anasazi Girl is moving to Whitianga, on the Coromandel Peninsula for a haul-out, hard-stand period.  A lifestyle change for all of us as James shifts into the intensive work-mode of preparing the boat for the next passage.

The kids will miss cruising around the colorful waterfront on their scooters, but they are super excited for the next adventure

sweet sunset, whangamata

Whangamata, Coromandel Peninsula, NEW ZEALAND