I had a nice stop at Mangonui, I like the place.  Some good shore leave and exercise and stocked up with fresh groceries.  In the Four Square store I was taught the Covid level 2 protocol, wait to enter store, use hand sanitiser, keep distance from other shoppers etc.  With fresh groceries at hand I returned to Truce at anchor.  Only to find I has forgotten to buy potatoes, so back I went for another dose of hand sanitiser.

In the evening I produced a hearty stew to keep out the cold damp conditions.  The night at anchor was peaceful, hardy a breath of wind and a low swell coming into the harbour, I slept like a baby.

 The trip down from Mangonui harbour to Whangaroa was a motor affair all the way.  I left at first light to try and capture the calm conditions of early morning.  There was a ten-knot breeze from ahead, that kept heading us no matter what cape we passed around, and a lumpy sea with easterly swell.  Nevertheless, we made good progress and arrived off Whangaroa just after lunch time.

As we entered through the channel into the harbour the resident dolphins turned up to welcome us.  It’s always a pleasure to see these creatures.

Dolphins welcome into Whangaroa Harbour. Photo Ray Penson
Dolphins welcome into Whangaroa Harbour. Photo Ray Penson


Once inside the harbour I was undecided what to do or where to anchor.  Whangaroa Harbour has so many protected anchorages its hard to choose.  Like going into a half full car park, always difficult to decide which is the best spot to park.

First, I investigated Lane Cove in Rere Bay.  This is an excellent anchorage protected from all wind directions.  I wanted to anchor here as there is also a good walk ashore.  Unfortunately, there was no phone signal.

The Dukes Nose rock, Whangaroa Harbour. Photo Ray Penson
The Dukes Nose rock, Whangaroa Harbour. Photo Ray Penson

I then moved out into Pekapeka Bay and did a spot of fishing – I was successful first cast.  Once again, I didn’t keep the fish as I have fresh meat on board that I must use up first.  After a bit of fishing I anchored in Waitepipi Bay, where there was a phone signal.  Soon after anchoring the rain started and a breeze sprang up.  I decided to move on, this time going further up into the harbour where I picked up a mooring in Okura Bay. 

Finally, I settled down for the night.  I had a phone signal and a nice protected bay with a mooring.  The drizzle and rain continued into the night.

I awoke this morning to find everything outside sopping wet, it had rained, that light soaking type rain, all night.  Heavy overcast clouds blocked out the sun completely.  The forecast today is not good for sailing south, the wind is stubbornly from ahead, twenty to twenty-five knots.  I will stay in Okura Bay for another day hoping for an improvement tomorrow.

In the afternoon the sun broke through the clouds and gave some charge through the solar panels, very welcome as I thought I may have to run the engine to charge batteries.  Although the sun was out for a couple of hours it was not strong enough to dry up the wet.

Late in the afternoon I brought the dinghy back on board and lashed it down on the foredeck.  It has been too wet all day to go ashore, well I could have gone ashore but wasn’t able to motivate myself.  With the dinghy back on board we are ready to go anytime the wind allows.

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