We have taken Ika Moana out of charter for the 2017 winter to use her for some offshore cruising of our own. She'll be back in charter for the New Zealand summer, starting November 2017 and will be better than ever before. Upgrades include a new mainsail, water-maker, lots of solar panels, integrated radar, charts and AIS on a touch screen at the helm, anchor windlass up/down controlled at the helm, cockpit drinks fridge and much, much more. She's currently at Category 1 for safety, so plenty of good stuff on board.
We're planning on leaving for Tonga on 6 May (weather permitting) and then on to Fiji. Updates will be posted through to the facebook page. We may be a little slow in replying to booking requests over May and June in particular, but we will get to it when we find 3G, 4G or wifi. I've attached a pic of us sailing down to Man-o-War at Waiheke at Easter to test all the systems before departure date. Happy times!
We had a great first season chartering the Ika Moana. The last of the Maritime NZ requirements were met, just before Christmas and then we had 5 weeks worth of charters over January and February. We took the boat back for further upgrades, but that is the subject of the next post. Everyone really enjoyed the boat and we've continued to make improvements to maximise the experience. The cruising season starts again in November 2017 and we've already got one repeat and one new customer booked in. I've attached my favourite pic of the summer. This is the Ika Moana and our own private vessel (a genesis called Extreme) during a changeover out at Pipi Bay in the Bay of Islands. This was just before she came back to Auckland for the rest of the summer.