Whangamumu Harbour is tucked in behind the Whangamumu Peninsula — some 6nm south of Cape Brett. We are outside the Bay of Islands here, next stop Tahiti if one were to continue sailing ENE from here (as we last did in 2004 enroute Alaska).
Whangamumu is an ADAGIO favorite, protected from all but strong NE winds, moderate depths so it is easy to find your spot in 5m of water, roomy so there is space for a lot of boats. When we anchored at mid-day there were two other yachts. By nightfall there were some twenty-odd boats, many of which are summer migrants from Auckland waters on their way to a holiday in the Bay of Islands.
In addition to the attractions of the abandoned whaling station and the gnarly pohutukawa trees surrounding the bay, there is a pod of bottlenose dolphins. While paddling the kayak along the shore Alan and Sarah discovered the dolphins as they were herding a school of fish against the rocks.
We observed the fun from ADAGIO for a bit, then for a better photo platform we launched ALLEGRO. The dolphins appeared to be feeding continuously around the shore of the inner bay. The foraging activity sometimes included spectacular jumps, lunges, sprints and nose-stands. Our impression was that the acrobatics of the agile dolphins are triggered by unexpected escape moves by the target school. At one point, they seemed to take a break from fishing to play with a piece of seaweed. Great fun — we enjoyed a couple of hours with the dolphins — as you can see from the photo gallery linked at left. During the evening the dolphins continued to feed, passing within a couple of meters of ADAGIO near sunset.