Imagine a tropical island with lovely beaches, set in a turquoise lagoon, with windswept palms bending to the trade winds. Then think of the barrier reef, a vertical wall, with a 50-meter face. The anchorage is a shallow patch–10 to 15 meters deep–on this face, with the reef a boat length from the stern.
That’s Palmerston in the northern Cook Islands, where 57 descendants from William Marsters eke out a living.
We’ve anchored for a few hours to have a swim, check the engine room, and take a couple of photos. The anchoring situation is a little touchy. So we will be on our way by evening…
…Two hours later and everything checks out in the engine space. We have adjusted the books slightly, there is a wash going in the laundry room, and we are preparing to exit while we still have good light. We will retrace our inbound track, just in case.