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Tuesday, September 09, 2003

September 9, 2003-Wind Bullet Alley

To our way of thinking Pana Wina is its own special version of hell; what are we doing back here?

Well, we are on the way to Misima, and Pana Wina is a half way point, and some friends are here, and we agreed to meet them, so we stopped. But we knew it was a mistake as soon as we rounded the corner into the bay. When the first gust hit us it caught us head to wind and set the sails flapping and it seemed like all hell broke loose, and this was the anchorage. The wind whips through this anchorage like little cyclones about once every 10-20 seconds, or if you are lucky, they give you a minute or two before blasting. I don't know how strong they are, our instruments are not reliable right now and besides, the gusts are too short for the averaging, but if it's blowing 20 outside, it must be 30 or more here in the gusts.

We sailed in with a full main and the number 4 jib; not much sail but for Pana Wina's gusts, it was too much. In the lulls we stood straight up and stopped. In the gusts we were knocked over to our beam ends, meaning down so far it was hard to hang on. Oh, I guess I thought it was exciting, but who needs it. Dropping and folding the sails was also exciting. Needless to say we worked fast. Judy is dynamite on the foredeck when she needs to be.

So we arrived here and anchored, in 40 feet of water in good sand, away from the coral patches and bommies, made the boat secure, and it’s time to go visit our friends. We're fine here, but we hate it. Hata Lawi was much better.

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Pana Wina, Lousiades, Papua New Guinea

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