It is a bit amazing that you can sail 40 miles here and not leave the lagoon.
We took a long weekend and sailed with some other boats up to the island of Roi-Namur a few weeks ago. The Small Boat Marina needed to move one of the Capri 20’ sailboats from
We left on Saturday afternoon, and sailed north up the atoll in light winds up to the
We woke the next morning and soon had a squall blow in. We were protected by the island but it raining very hard. We waited for the rain to taper off a bit and headed off with reefed sails. The wind brought some chop, but since we were in the lagoon the seas did not grow big. As the day went by the winds dropped again and we shook the reefs out first, then put the spinnaker up, then a mile short we had to start the engine again. Roi has a pretty nice sandy beach area to anchor off. We spent the afternoon swimming around and visiting.
Roi looked prettier than Kwaj, more trees and more sandy beaches. This island in closer to it’s natural state as it was not enlarged as much and not built up as heavily. We did not have much time too look around, but you cannot miss the huge radars and some of the WWII artifacts. A pleasant evening was had by all.
The next day we got an early start for the 40mile sail home. It is still the rainy/doldrums season and very light winds have been common. We were concerned that we might have to motor all the way home, but we were once again lucky to have good wind. Forward of the beam, but a good tack all the way back. In fact the entire trip up was on one tack, and the way back was all the way on the opposite tack. Not a whole lot of sail adjusting to do. At least not till we were hit by another squall a few miles out from Kwaj. High winds and heavy rain for about 30 minutes, then it was past and it took all the wind with it.
It was a nice trip. Lots of good sailing. Sailing in the lagoon means calmer seas, but require a watch for shallow coral heads. Some of these are marked, and some are charted, but a lookout is required. You can see them by a change in water color, but that all depends on the angle of the sun, or if there is any sun, and distance away. The lagoon is huge and the islands are intermittent on the reef, this means that often you can only see a few specs of land at a time.