Just before we sighted land a huge pod of dolphins came to visit us and play in our bow wave, it was like they were showing us the final way to the Pacific islands.
I can’t tell you how amazing it is to see land again and with the dolphins with us again it was truly magical. The boys shouted “land ahoy” at the top of their voices and we gazed in awe as the island shapes appeared out of the mist and clouds.
Due to COVID we have to check-in in a specific island and harbour, which slightly annoyingly means sailing past a few islands like Ua Huka first! Never mind there will be time to explore and potter back to other islands in due course. 30nm further on we finally see our island and it’s an amazing dramatic sight with steep rising cliffs from the sea. Greens and browns glinting against the blue of the sea and even the sight of other sailing boats.
We’ve sailed 3500 miles and have seen precisely two boats in the entire time, both fishing boats off Galapagos. That’s it. Talk about deserted seas. Even the smell of land fills our nostrils, all your senses are delighted, it was a truly emotional time.
Nuka Hiva looks stunning and we are delighted to have made it before nightfall. We adjusted our clocks, we are now 10.5 hours behind the UK, ate a quick dinner and dropped into bed utterly exhausted. Exploring (and checking-in) and ringing home will start tomorrow. But the good news is that we have made it across the Pacific in record breaking time, 17 days and 7 hours. Not bad!!! That’s Force 8 sailing for you!!! The last boat to arrive here took 70 days from Panama!! Most people in the bay took 35-45 days. It took us 8 days from Panama to Galapagos and 17 to here, equivalent of 24 days total. Still very fast! Time to go slow for awhile and get into island time…