Thursday, October 31, 2013

Rotuma, Fiji

TIME: 2013/10/31 22:47 UTC (10:47AM local)
LATITUDE: 12-29.23S
LONGITUDE: 177-07.20E
Anchored near wharf on NE corner of Rotuma Island, Fiji 15' sand with super holding.

Early this morning around 1AM LightSpeed was 12nm from Routma, so we dropped sail and drifted until 5:30AM. Our drift rate lying beam to the seas and wind was 0.6 knots/hour with a 8-13 knot breeze overnight. About 9 miles from the SE corner of Rotuma we had Digicel 2G data. Closer to the East end of Routma we lost the Digicel and now in the anchorage on the NE corner near the wharf and it appears the signal comes from west end of the island near government station.

Despite the lack of internet we had a great morning fishing for Yellow fin Tuna on the east side of Rotuma. Hundreds if not thousands of sea birds and lots of jumping Yellow fin. We started with a double hook up. I landed the first fish pretty quick and then went to work on the second fish that was now down deep and much larger than the first based on the fight to reel him in. After getting a look at the fish near the surface he dove again with a powerful rush. Then tug tug tug and no more pressure on the line as I reeled in just a fish head. Shark!

The anchorage at Rotuma is gorgeous with white sand contrasting dark black volcanic rock clad with rich verdant green vegetation. Ground swell from the north creates a bump, but after being at sea the movement is no bother. A large red ship sized mooring buoy lies in the center of the bay and could be a hazard during a night approach.
 Rotuma Bakery
 Wood fired ovens turnout some beautiful loaves.
 Feeding the flames
 Hand kneeded dough
 Typical segment of Rotuma road.

 This is the happy home of a family of 9.
 Dave and Philip our amazing island host.
 Curry dinner near the wharf with a few fresh coconuts.

 Beautiful beach near the wharf

 Philip bringing in bikes for our 27km round island ride.

 Pandanus leaves drying in the sun.
 Looking west at Government station is the big town on Rotuma featuring many small government offices, post office, police station, customs, immigration, biosecurtity and a small grocery store.
 Looking east down the main road at Government station.
 SE bay looking south.
 SE bay looking SSE

 Cool coconut scraper in the form of a animal shaped bench called a Tau or Tua?
 Kathy with a skipjack and yellow fin we caught near the whaf.

That's it for now.