Thursday, October 23, 2008

SW Pulau Lingga

It was almost exactly a hundred miles to the next anchorage. Too much for a day sail in light winds, but hopefully my last overnight sail in Indonesia. At dawn I awoke to find a decent wind blowing into the anchorage and decided to make sail while the going was good. The wind lasted until mid-day, followed by calms and thunder-storm induced wind from the usual variety of directions, keeping me busy as ever try to make the most of the breeze and keep the boat heading in more or less the planned direction.Unlike the last passage, there were few dangers to avoid; a straight line would keep me clear of the few charted rocks and islands. As for the uncharted dangers, I put my trust in the cartographers as there's little chance to see anything at night - the moon isn't making an appearance until after midnight and with clouds covering the sky it's almost perfectly dark. Only the occasional distant blinding flash of lightning illuminates the night.

I caught another wahoo. Less of a monster, more single-handed sailor size this time. That said it was big enough to destroy my hook, still anything for fresh fish.

By sunset the wind completely died but left a slight chop, meaning a stronger wind was required to stop the sails impotently flapping. There was little traffic, a few fishing boats, but with the radar detector silent, I decided it was the perfect chance to grab some sleep. I furled the genoa, secured the main, tied-off the helm and slept well for a few hours while Kika gently rolled on the swell.

Just before dawn the thunderstorms closed on our position, giving a decent breeze. Soon we were speeding towards land at 6 knots, with dolphins briefly joining to play in the bow wave.

Even with limited visibility you know you're approaching land as you start to see rubbish floating in the sea - some of it potentially hazardous like large barnacle encrusted planks or trunks as well as the inevitable plastic bags and polystyrene containers. Today a flip-flop floated past with two resident crabs, looking like refugees making a bid for freedom on their raft.

Just after midday I dropped anchor off the SW tip of Pulau Lingga, in a sandy bay beneath the lighthouse. Great to arrive with time to swim and relax before sunset.

SW tip of Pulau Lingga, 22/10 12.40: S00deg 17.88' E104deg 59.93E

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