We finally sailed from Vava'u yesterday making an overnight passage to the Ha'apai group. These islands are mainly atolls - lower than the Vava'u group but with fantastic sand beaches and reefs everywhere. We sailed close-hauled all the way into a light SE wind, heaving to around 2 am off the islands. This morning we anchored off a 2 mile long sand beach after a few hours of interesting tacking between shoals and reefs.
There is a deep low forecast to come through here with winds to gale force that has everybody worried. Some boats on passage to New Zealand have actually returned to Tonga to take shelter rather than face the high winds and seas while on passage. We shall find a safe anchorage nearby, although the Ha'apai are not renowned for anchorages with 360 degree protection.
My friend Kurt points out that the last post should read 3200 liters per heating season - not 32000! He also suggest that solar panels take maybe 10 years to produce the amount of energy they took to make in the first place.