ende

Nov
21

Weather forecasts for cruising in and around French Polynesia

I’ve just put a page on our blog that, on the one hand, summarizes all weather forecasts we’re using on Pitufa. It includes weather bulletins, surface-analysis charts, cyclone warnings, El-Niño discussions, and of course all Saildocs codes. On the other hand, the page also embeds all those current forecasts, so it may be a convenient all-in-one weather site for cruisers in French Polynesia.… Continue reading »

Oct
30

Cruising info on Rurutu

We added a small cruising guide about Rurutu (Austral Islands) to our blog, click here to read it.

Oct
16

Time for a new generation?

When we bought Pitufa 10 years ago, she was equipped with navigation instruments by Robertson/Simrad which were already 10 years old then. We are still using these instruments, despite their growing need for life-sustaining measures. About five years ago, the mast top unit of the wind instrument was the first component to quit. On the passage from Galapagos to French Polynesia we soon learned to… Continue reading »

Mar
30

Gambier’s Pearl Farms Increasingly Become Navigational Hazard

In recent years, the motto in the Gambier Islands seems to be “a pearl farm for everyone.” Many new concessions were granted, and the result is clearly noticeable. Not only were existing buoy fields massively expanded, but also countless smaller installations were deployed (and still are), scattered throughout the lagoon. Some of those new installations are made by one-man companies, lacking man-power, proper material, and… Continue reading »

May
13

Anchoring around Coral

Each year sailboats cruising in the Tuamotus get into trouble at anchor: they get trapped on lee shores after a shift in the wind direction, foul their anchor and/or chain in coral and the results are stressful manoeuvres to get the anchor back up, bent bow rollers and ruined or even ripped out windlasses. Of course the fragile coral structures get badly damaged with each… Continue reading »

Apr
11

Location Report WordPress Plugin

Several fellow cruisers asked me whether I can recommend a WordPress plugin for position reporting, that is, a plugin to show the latest position of your vessel on a map and normally also to show the route traveled so far. The truth is I cannot really recommend one. But what do you use on Pitufa.at? On Pitufa.at I use Geo Mashup, or rather a… Continue reading »

Dec
09

PolyMagNet–SSB Radio Net in Polynesia

If you are cruising to, from, or around French Polynesia, you may be interested in checking in on the PolyMagNet. It’s an English-speaking SSB net where vessels underway can report their position and conditions, and boats at anchor pass on info about weather, anchoring, events, etc. in their area. It’s on air twice every day at 1800 UTC and 0400 UTC (8:00 AM and 6:00… Continue reading »

Oct
12

Sailing with Cats–a Summary after 5 years of Cruising

When we set out from Europe 5 years ago we were slightly worried how our cat, Leeloo, would cope with long passages, whether we’d have problems when clearing into countries with her, if we’d be able to find cat food in remote places, etc. Despite the fact that Leeloo was already 11 years old when we moved to the boat she adapted quite quickly to… Continue reading »

Sep
16

Pitufa’s Wind Atlas and Windrose Browser

Check out our Atlas of Prevailing Ocean Winds! As a convenient alternative to pilot charts, our site provides an interactive wind atlas and windrose browser. Unlike classical pilot charts, this atlas is based on satellite data (uniformly-sampled, unbiased), insofar similar to Jimmy Cornell`s Ocean Atlas (but that one is on paper and pricey…). We visualize world-wide ocean wind data from the SeaWinds scatterometer onboard… Continue reading »

Jul
10

Pan bread

Another simplified recipe is pan bread a la Pitufa: 2 cups of wheat flour 1 cup of rye flour 1,5 cups warm water 1 teaspoon dried yeast 1 teaspoon salt bread spices (typical Austrian: ground coriander, ground caraway, fennel) Mix dry ingredients in a bowl, add water, stir well with a spoon (no kneading necessary). Pour the dough into an oiled pan (with a lid),… Continue reading »

Jul
09

Yoghurt

Fellow cruisers have been giving us recipes for yoghurt making, offered yoghurt starter cultures, but we always politely refused–it seemed like such a hassle involving either yoghurt making machines, or without such machines the process would take hours, while we’d have to regularly check with a thermometer to keep the temperature at exactly the right degree to keep the bacteria happy and working. We were… Continue reading »

Mar
09

Haul-out facility in the Marquesas

The first haul-out facility of the Marquesas (in the harbour of Atuona, Hiva Oa) is soon going to start operating (April 2016). Vincent Roche, a young French pilot and mechanic who has lived in the Marquesas for the past 15 years, has organized a trailer capable of carrying keel vessels with a draft of up to 2 meters. He thinks he can deal with yachts… Continue reading »

Jul
12

New railing netting

The last couple of days, in-between the hiking trips with more and less luck (we still have not found the track from Paopao to Vaiare…), we replaced the netting of the railing around Pitufa. Sounds easier than it actually was–in total we spent 3 full working days cutting, attaching, stretching, swearing, undoing, reattaching and tightening the bloody thing. The old one had started to disintegrate… Continue reading »

Jun
30

When to go where in French Polynesia

French Polynesia is a wide-spread and diverse cruising area. To make most of the different archipelagos it is essential to pick the right time. We’ve put together info on when to go where in French Polynesia here.

May
21

Cruising Info on Raivavae

As we hardly found cruising info on Raivavae, we’ve summarized our experiences in a small guide.

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