Raroria, the last Tuamotu

Fun with Sharks!
Okay, we had a little time waiting on the weather, so let’s play!
We gathered (chummed in) a few sharks in the back bay with some day old fish (no hooks) and did some filming with the GoPro(s). Big learning experience!!!! We thought there were only 10-12” babies in the back bay.

The first fish we put out was tied to a 5 lbs dive weight and worked just fine with the small sharks……well…..let’s just say that weight is gone…😳
The next fish we put out was attached to our bucket full or coral and sand. That didn’t last long either. I finally just put my foot in the bucket to keep the sharks from taking the fish. The next round, we got the stern anchor off Sea Bella and that worked great! These are all Black Tip Sharks btw……some much larger than the 12” we were expecting.

Hungry Baby.

Raroria was the last of the atolls we visited. For many cruisers it’s the first one to sail into from the Marquesis. Our highlights were exploring the Kon Tiki monument with our great cruising friends on Fundango, the huge pearl farm and of course our silly fun with the baby sharks. Our good cruising friends on SV Breakaway found these great Octopi:

Sailing through the Tuamotus was an amazing experience, but it was time to say goodby. Thank you for joining Scott and I online these past 6 months in 8 atolls (and Tahiti for repairs). It’s such fun to share our experiences with friends and family. We went on a sporty 3 day sail back upwind to the Marquesas for cyclone season (and for yummy fruit and fun mountains to explore!)

Watch this fun video on our visit in this atoll:

Scuba Divers Dream in Tikehau, French Polynesia (August, 2023)

This feels like our Little Private Island…diving the wall outside the pass was breathtaking. We Sailed from Moorea and enjoyed a beam reach sail for over 175 miles. Beautiful, relaxing and pretty simple.
Tahiti and the big city feel were nice for views, boat work and a bit of tourism, but we are now back in “our” sweet spot. Tikehau has about 500 residents, some of the best snorkeling in the Tuomotus…….and less tourists.
Thank you friends on Idefax for the drone pictures. See the black blob? It’s the gigantic bait ball we dive with…take a look at the video!

Grouper Spawning. Annual event Fakarava, French Polynesia

Featured on BBC’s series “Blue Planet II,” the coral reefs of French Polynesia host a very rare spectacle to see. Up to 18,000 Marbled Grouper fish migrate to the atoll Fakarava every July, at the full moon high tide. 1,000 grey reef sharks fill this Tuamotu archipelago in search of one thing: these marbled grouper, who have come to spawn. The sharks’ typically feed at night and gentle swim at rest in the day. The sharks live here year round, as it’s an easy place to rest, gently floating in the 3 knot current of the incoming or outgoing tides.

Sharks feeding behavior becomes unpredictable and erratic as darkness falls and the hunt begins, making for an extremely complex, exciting scuba dive. Some fish are lucky to escape the hungry jaws of the sharks.

Mastering Scuba Diving! Fakarava

Kathy here, I did it! Finally I conquered my irrational fear of scuba diving! Yesterday I dove 93 feet! Years ago in college, while in the cold waters of Southern California, I got certified to scuba dive and I hadn’t put a dive tank on in 30 years. My fears hadn’t been of the unknown or scary creatures, it’s been more about breathing and claustrophobia while scuba diving. It became kind of a big “thing”. I have been enjoying snorkeling so much these last few years, I just put it off. Finally I just went for it. A few practice dives under our boat in 20 feet of water and I realized that all is well and to stay focused on the beauty. Well, French Polynesia is the perfect place for scuba diving. So clear, such beauty, I love it! Fakatava South Pass is a famous dive location and Top Dive filled our scuba tanks daily. Most friends back home are amazed at the hundreds of sharks and overwhelming amount of healthy coral! Our scuba diving friends and bloggers on We Sail showed us a cool cave, too. Going back for more today.

Glad Scott was there, every step of the way