Komodo to Lombok

12 – 15 August 2012 (Eastern Hemisphere)

Dear F&F,

When we left Komodo, we had a nice sail across the channel to Palau Sumbawa Island. As we arrived we caught up to an old guy named Don from North Carolina. He\’s an expat whose been living on his boat based out of Bali for the last 20 years. He told us about the lack of anchorages along the 150 mile stretch of this island. We pressed on to Teluk Sanggar (Sanggar Bay). We knew we\’d arrive after dark which I hate to do in an unknown location, but the waypoint/guide info seemed pretty good. When we entered the bay, we came upon 30 of the trimaran type fishing boats commonly seen here in Indonesia. They were like a floating mine field. Some all lit up and others, no lights at all. After negotiating this traffic, we came into the anchorage. Adding to the fun it was absolutely pitch black with no lights on shore and the charts aren\’t exactly right!

First, we got in shallow water, down to 15 feet and back tracked out. We went around the reef which helped orient us, but as the water went from 500 ++ feet to 20 feet in about 30 seconds, it was a bit disconcerting.

We got to where I thought would be a good spot but apparently it wasn\’t to be. We anchored, all was well. The wind was only 10 knots. At midnight (why is it always at midnight!???…:-) The wind started to blow hard from the beach. 25 with gusts to 30 knots. I watched the depth sounder and after about 5 minutes of this, it was clear that our anchor fell off the plateau and was hanging straight down in space. We had 150 feet of chain out and when Nikki went to up the anchor, it would barely move. I thought it was the chain stripper stuck again so I removed it. I then tried the windlass again making sure the chain wouldn\’t get jammed without the stripper. The windlass barely moved and the motor was getting hot.

All along, Nikki is trying to keep the boat head to wind and away from reef and fishing boats bobbing about. Fortunately, the wind event died off as quickly as it arrived and after about 25 minutes, I was able to coax the anchor and chain back up to the deck.

My summarization is that the motor didn\’t have the power to lift the combined weight of about 250 lbs. which it very definitely should. As we could not depend on another deep anchor attempt (we might miss the plateau), we decided to set the main with one reef and slowly sail toward Lombok, our next destination and about 110 miles away. We did this taking night watches and felt pretty tired as we\’d been moving without too much of a break for days.

We arrived at Gili Lewang Island just off the northeast coast of Lombok the next late afternoon and were glad to anchor in a nice sandy shallow spot at 25 feet. This morning, I\’d neglected to put the chain stripper back on the windlass and when I went to raise the anchor it jammed immediately. Nikki and I played mechanic and got it back in shape pretty quickly. I may have found the chain stripper problem? Time will tell. The windlass worked perfectly and off we went. Next stop, Medang Marina in Lombok right off the famous tourist island, Gili Air.

The internet is very good here and when next we write I hope to be tied up to a dock. We\’ll have several days to tour here before heading off the last 60 miles or so to Bali.

KIT, write anytime, Scott and Nikki