Back to Raiatea / Pearl Farm & Ile Taoru
Trip Start Nov 27, 2010
15Trip End Dec 13, 2010
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Where I stayed
Dream Yacht Charter
We departed our anchorage on Bora Bora at 6.45am. Dale wasn't well today, so I had a quick breakfast of toast & we headed off starting with 2 reefs in the main as it was quite gusty here at 25kn. It was easier to shake the reefs that put them in, so off we went and headed out of the pass. When we got out, the headsail was set and when we headed past "the lighthouse" on the south west point of Bora, we found we had between 18-25kn so we decided to shake the reefs in the main. On the way back to Raiatea, I called the Anapa Pearl Farm to check if all was OK to do the tour today (which I organised yesterday) and everything was fine for a 1pm ETA. Our course was a little off and we were headed south of Rautoani Pass. Had a good sail back and with 6nm to go we started the motor rather than tack, as we would not have achieved our ETA.
I called Summer who ran the Pearl Farm Tours and she guided us to where the farm was located
We had a beer whilst we waited to be collected by their boat and soon we were picked up by Summer and 2 crew and they took us to the bungalow but stopped on the way where one of the crew dived off the boat and bought up a string of oysters. You could get in the water with guys if you wanted but we chose not to. Their farm is cleverly disguised under the water – usually you see rows upon rows of buoys, which are the farms but this style kept the area looking natural.
Once we got to the bungalow, they cleaned the oysters and then slightly prised open the shell and with a dentist mirror they inserted this to check out the colour of the shell from the hairlip (which determines the colour of the pearl). If the colour was exceptional that would sacrifice this one and take the DNA from it and insert it into another oyster. If the colour was good then they would place a small incision in the “genitalia” remove the pearl and insert a man made ball of the same size back into the shell – which the pearl would then take form around
We were dropped off to the boat at 2.45pm and we dropped the mooring straight away and headed to the main wharf in Uturoa. We purchased another 5lt of dinghy fuel and I ran to the supermarket across the road & bought some steak, fish & veg for the next few nights. The supplies must have come in as I spotted Broccoli, Zucchini & other vegetables that don’t grow here that looked fresher than those I get here in Airlie Beach! Back to the boat and we motored around to Ile Taoru which is a little island on the east side of Raiatea about 20 minutes from Uturoa & immediately after Teavipiti pass. We dropped anchor in 8-10m of clear water just on the south-west corner of the island but we had to keep away from the buoys they had there. Again a private island but had good protection from NE-E. I cooked up the Thazard fish fillets, with some mash spud & ratatouille – Dale ate a little as he still felt crook & we went to bed fairly early.