August 7, 1987

8/7/87 Pate Island

near Mtongawanda on Pate Island

Because of the tide, our departure of 8am was pushed to 11am. After taking the kayaks and sailboards back to storage we just sat around. The heat made it seem like an endless wait. Finally, we said good bye and headed out. Not only were we heading into the wind, but against the current too. The crews poled the boats all the way to the Boteler Islands. With the high winds, comes naturally high waves. The sailing was a roller coaster ride. After soaking several pages of a book I was trying to read, I gave up and put it up.

At first, a wave would crash over the bow every couple of minutes. But as we entered the wide open area of the channel, they came more frequently. Before, in the lighter winds, the sail was allowed to push against the mast. But now the crew would have to untie the sail, bring it around in front of the mast and then tie it back down when coming about. It only took a couple of seconds but it was impressive. Our crew was full of experience, almost all of them in their forties. The Biashara crew included Captain Omar Usafu, Muhammud, Ali Sa’ad, Ali Sha and Jogo.

Ali Sha

It got very cloudy, combined with the wind and the wetness to make for some cold passengers. We finally landed at Mtongawanda on Pate Island in the late afternoon. Dave and I, remembering the thorny tent spot we had the last time we were here, decided to pitch our tent on the beach. The rain started to fall about 8pm and besides a few brief lapses, lasted well into the next day.