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Day 1,420 - Opua, NZ (35° 12S 174° 12E)
17:57hrs - April 20th 2011
Final Days In The Bay Of Islands

Raivavae (rye-e-vavay), a volcanic island suspended in a turquoise lagoon and framed by sandy motus and barrier reef, is a little known paradise in the South Pacific, and is considered to be among the most beautiful islands in this corner of the world - competing against the legendary Bora Bora, it's famous northern cousin, for the most picturesque destination.

But unlike Bora Bora, which receives hordes of visitors each week, Raivavae, for the most part, is off the radar to honeymooners and most South Pacific wanderers, and so remains unknown to all but a lucky few.

Laying around four hundred miles south of Tahiti, Raivavae is part of the Australs - two archipelagoes which consist of seven islands scattered across 800 miles of ocean, and while they're part of French Polynesia, tourism in the Australs, compared to the Society Islands at least, is practically non-existent. So before we head back to Papeete for a cold Hinano, we'll be popping in to see for ourselves.

We're ready to go now, we've done everything we can do to prepare Dream Time, and ourselves, for what will be our second longest passage - over two thousand miles of ocean, or around three weeks at sea, but we're waiting for the right weather window. And even though this passage is considered by many to be an 'up hill' sail, the lure of another 2 -3 more years in Oceana, exploring new and remote islands, will make it worth the effort!





 


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Day 1,403 - Okahu Passage, NZ (35° 12S 174° 12E)
09:03hrs - April 3rd 2011
Our New Nav Table-Tablet

Technology moves a lot faster than Dream Time, and what was new to us four years ago when we left New York, would be considered ancient and obsolete by today's high-tech standards, so we're a little behind the times. But we're OK with that, we actually like how liberating our new lifestyle is - cruising has forced us to simplify. After-all, we don't have a lot of spare room on board, so the impulse to buy 'new gadgets' is quickly abandoned when we realize we've got absolutely nowhere to put them.

But with that said, we're not purists either, we like the convenience, comfort and safety that technology can provide. So for us it's about finding balance. And OK, I admit, there's the 'cool factor' to consider too.

Since we bought Dream Time over eleven years ago, I've wished we had the ability (and perhaps just a little more room) to install a remote navigational system below deck, somewhere we could view our boat's NMEA data (digital charts, position, boat speed, wind speed, water depth etc.) from the warm, dry comfort
of our cabin. But as we don't have much of a nav table (it's more of a shelf), and I'm not particularly keen
on running additional wires and mounting more instruments, we've had to make do with what we've
got - which regrettably meant crawling outside into the cockpit and braving the elements just to read
our displays.

But thankfully not any more. You see we recently bought an iMux multiplexor - a cool little box that transmits our connected NMEA data wirelessly, magically beaming it around the boat, giving us the freedom and flexibility to view our external B&G Network, Garmin chartplotter, and even our AIS data on an iPad (iPhones also work). The install was simple too, even for a non-techie.

So now when it's cold, 'blowing stink' in an anchorage (yesterday it was gusting to 42 knots) and tipping with rain, or I just can't be bothered to get out of bed, we can check our position, see what the wind's blowing, and even plot our next passage all from the comfy convenience of our cabin.

So thanks to new technology I've finally got my remote nav table, well, nav tablet. And the best part: not only is it small and portable, but it's also loaded with some pretty cool apps too!

Equipment List:

1.
2.
3.
4.

Brookhouse Multiplexor: www.Brookhouseonline.com
iNavX software App: www.iNavX.com
3G iPad: www.apple.com/iPad/3G
OtterBox iPad case: www.OtterBox.com