With coming to New Zealand foreign vessels are able to stay in NZ for a maximum period of 24 months so we decided to take the opportunity to enjoy some time off from sailing, get some boat projects done and visit family and friends in NZ, Australia and North America.
Before NZs winter set in and while the weather was nice we decided to tackle the 2 biggest time consuming projects; repainting the interior of the boat & extending the length of our hulls by 4ft with Maverick (our manufacturer) hull transoms, which we brought in from South Africa.
The hull transom extensions were a big project and thankfully Neville from Norsand Boatyard was keen to work on this project for us.
The extra length extends our waterline so will be interesting to see the impact in the upcoming sailing season.
Even though the boat can stay 24 months Brett being a foreigner is only able to stay in NZ 9 months in an 18 month period, so we were also limited in the time we could be in NZ.
We used Australia as a base, which was warmer than NZ and great for catching up with my sister; Louise and family.
Ruben & Daniel my nephews are a lot of fun and definetly keep Louise & Stu busy.
Trying to get fit we cycled and went hiking. Springbrook National Park in Queensland has lots of different hikes. Beautiful area. The beaches in Queensland are great for building sand castles with my crazy nephews and getting exercise on the what seems like endless white beaches.
The Gold Coast has lots of events on to bring tourists in which while we were here included 2 free concerts and the GC600 Supercars racing.
The Screw in Panama City is always an impressive building.
We then hired a car in LA taking a road trip up to Canada.
Of course a stop at a fun park for the day could not be missed and given we’d both been to Disneyland and Universal Studios we chose Knott’s Berry Farm in Los Angeles. No crowds as we were there on a week day, what a blast!
Las Vegas with all its glitz is along the way. Guess who planned this part of the trip to get his poker fix.
We took a walk through the Craters of The Moon Park in Idaho, which was really impressive and a good stop on the way to Canada. The lava fields are between 15000 & 2000 years old from repeated volcanic eruptions across the river plain in south central Idaho. After the molten rock cooled huge lava fields with lava tubes, caves and volcanic cones remained and you are able to walk amongst a select few as the area here is huge.
It was great to catch up and reconnect with family and friends in Canada given we’ve been off sailing for 5 years. Plenty of time for hiking, golfing and mountain biking, getting some exercise and hence feeling muscles we haven’t used for a while. Lots of good Alberta Beef too thanks to dinner with family and friends.
On return from North America we had help installing some electronics and completed some more necessary projects.
Our 10yr old main sail couldn’t be patched due to sun damage so we had a new one made by Calibre Sails in Whangarei. Nice & shiny white.
Whangarei, NZ has definitely been a good place to do our boat projects with lots of marine services available and no tax on marine purchases / services 😉. Seismic Wave is looking great and after the winter season off we’re looking forward to summer sailing in NZ.