Location: Baie de Taiohae, Nuku Hiva, Marquesas
What a stellar day! After a slow day of motoring yesterday we were able to raise the mainsail late and sail through the night into the morning. At sunrise, more sail was raised, and Argo’s crew continued to be blessed with a steady wind that brought them swiftly into the Marquesas. Watch Team Three: Meg, Amy, Drake, Bianca, Alex, Brittany, Peter, and Sophie had the sunrise watch. The sunrise was spectacular- pinks, reds, and crepuscular rays piercing cumulous clouds. The sunrise also revealed that we were close by the island of Ua-Huka. Rather than appearing as specks on the horizon, the Marquesas already loomed large in the early light.
As Argo churned forward, she was greeted by clouds of seabirds. Greater frigates, brown noddies, and white terns, among others, made appearances flying from the dramatic cliffs of Nuku Hiva and circling Argo before proceeding out to sea. We rounded Cape Martin, whose sheer rocks make a natural citadel for the enclosed bay. We peered up into the fjord-like Baie du Controleur, wondering what lay at the far end where Herman Melville had stayed after jumping ship.
Around the next corner, we turned into Baie de Taiohae, where we will spend our next days. The entrance is surrounded by dry rocky cliffs with arid vegetation. This was a surprise, but the enclosed valley has the fertile green we expected. Once anchored the crew delved into boat appreciation, giving Argo a much needed detailed cleaning after the last 19 days of passage. Kai attacked the fridge with particular gusto, climbing in, to reach the corners.
Once we reached the designated stopping point, we took the first opportunity to jump in and swim. The water was warm and remarkably refreshing. Each crew member entertained the rest by taking turns jumping in. Some had more graceful entries than others, and David Diem’s backflip was surprisingly graceful!
After the swim, we had a delicious dinner of canned chili, expertly prepared by chefs Seby, Ivan, and Sophie. Their additions to the canned chili were, in fact, delicious, but we will look forward to getting some fresh food on land tomorrow!
Pictured: Two views of Sam and Jenna on bow watch; Seby checking out Nuku Hiva as we approached; Tim, London, Alexa, Ian, and Jack eager for our arrival; Amanda at the helm with Nuku Hiva in the background; Jack, Kai, Alex, and Tim after boat appreciation, swimming, and showers.