Blue Horizon

Blue Horizon

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Homeward Bound

Friday, May 4, 2012
Charlie returned from his trip to Chattanooga to visit with his Mom.  Carl Beckmann and Bob Kelley had helped me provision the boat for the trip back to Charleston, SC.  We had an appointment with Customs at 10a.m. the next morning.  We had downloaded the latest weather forecast.  It looked good to go.

Saturday, May 5, 2012
We had a big breakfast, cleared out at Customs, called Commander's Weather, and left our slip for the fuel dock where we filled up both tanks and 3 jerry cans.  We departed Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas at 1220.  We motored around St. Thomas and northward beyond the BVI where we put up the main and the jib and turned the motor off.  We sailed all night under a beautiful full moon until 1115 the next morning.  The engine came back on because the wind had died.  We motor sailed until 1717 when we were able to sail again.  This lasted until Sunday night at 2212 when the wind dropped below 10 knots.  We had to motorsail most of the day because winds were under 6 knots.  We were able to sail for a while (6 hours) from 1646-2208 on Sunday.  We were proceeding east of the Turks and Caicos and the lower Bahama Islands.

Monday-Friday May 7-11, 2012
We had to motor sail due to light winds usually under 5 knots until Thursday morning.  We had calculated our fuel usage and realized we needed to refuel.  We contemplated going into Marsh Harbor  in The Abacos but we could't be sure we would get there before dark, so we diverted to Cape Eleuthera Marina at Powell Point on Eleuthera Island.  We went between Cat Island, Little San Salvador and Eleuthera Island.  We were able to sail part of this (11 hours) and we arrived at Cape Eleuthera at 0930.  We proceeded to the fuel dock where we refueled and then to a slip.  We ate lunch and dinner on land.  I was able to do 3 loads of laundry while we were there.   We were also able to get a NOAA weather update and called Commander's Weather for their forecast.  They all said the weather was unsetteld for Friday.  Saturday going north  would be better.  They recommended we head up the Providence Channels to the Gulf Stream instead of East of the Abacos.

Saturday-Tuesday, May 13-16, 2012
We left Cape Eleuthera Marina at 0845 after a blocked head scare which was resolved quickly, thank goodness!  We proceeded west to the cut between Ship Channel Cay and Beacon Cay on the north end of the Exuma Islands.  Then we sailed north to Fleeming Cut and on into the NE Providence Channel .  It was smooth sailing on a beam reach.  The winds were in the 18-21 knot range.  We had a second reef in the mail sail.  We headed for Sandy Point on Grand Bahama Island and then to Freeport in the NW Providence Channel.  From there we headed for the Gulf Stream .  We had a following sea and swells of 5-8 feet.  The generator was not recharging the batteries sufficiently enough so we turned on the engine to help.  It also helped smooth out the rolling due to the swells.  Sunday afternoon we shook out one reef and turned the engine off until the wind dropped to under 8 knots Monday morning.   The wind shifted to directly on our stern so we dropped both sails to prevent flogging.  We motored  the rest of Monday until dawn on Tuesday.  We put both sails up but continued to motorsail due to low wind under 10 knots.   The current in the Gulf Stream was 3.5 knots in the southern end and was never below 1.9 knots the whole way.  We exited it about Brunswick, GA.

We arrived at the Charleston Channel at Tuesday evening 1810 where we contended with three big container ships.  We had called ahead for a slip at the Charleston Harbor Marina, but the tide was running too strong by the time we would have entered the marina safely.  We instead anchored just west of Fort Johnson in Charleston Harbor.  We had a leisurely cocktail hour and dinner.

Wednesday, May 17, 2012
We proceeded to the Charleston Harbor Marina early 0625 and were in the slip and tied up by 0730.  Then we had to wait for Customs personnel to arrive to check us in.  There was some mix up about who and where we were so he did not arrive until 1030.  We had called downtown but he came from the airport and the messages were not correctly forwarded.  Liz Beckmann waited along with us and then she took Carl and Bob Kelley home.  Our friends the Beckers came to give us a ride home to retrieve our SUV to unload the boat.  We and "Blue Horizon" were now safely HOME.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Heading Home to Charleston

Friday, May 4, 2012
       Charlie has returned from his quick trip to Chattanooga to see his 97 year old mother who recently had a fall and a stroke.  Our two friends who are going to help us sail the boat directly to Charleston are on the boat and we provisioned the boat this morning.  They are Carl Beckmann and Bob Kelley without whom we could not do this.  After checking out with customs and refueling the boat tomorrow, we will take off for the 9-10 day trip back to Charleston.  We will first head for the Turks and Caicos area them travel northward and east of the Southern Bahama Islands, the Exumas and Eluetheria and the Abacos after which we head northwest for Charleston.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

St Thomas and St. John, American Virgin Islands

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Blue Horizon at Yacht Haven Grande  (far right)
Our sail from St. Martin lasted from 1510 (3:10p.m.) on 4/21/12 until 1125 of the morning of 4/22/12.  The wind direction ranged from 90 to 150 degrees.  As the wind went more SE it became harder to prevent jibing even with our boom break.  The wave action also promoted jibing.  Charlie and I stood 3 hour watches so we each did get some sleep.  We kept going back and forth across our course line to help prevent jibing. During the night, the foot of the jib had come loose due to a lost shackle.  Charlie tried to fix it but the waves were too rough.   Most of the way the wind was variable from 8-15; but eventually, the wind stayed below 10 knots, so we dropped the sail and motored.  It was not a comfortable ride, but we arrived at Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas.  We had called ahead and reserved space at the IGY Yacht Haven Grande Marina.  We tied up, cleaned up, went ashore to check into customs.  After that, we found a place for lunch. Then it was back to the boat and  it was early to bed to catch up on sleep.

Monday, April 23, 2012
While checking out at St. Martin, we saw Stan Nicholas, who years ago was in the slip next to us at Charleston Harbor Marina before moving to the Virgin Islands.  He now lives on St .John and has built two villas on St. Thomas.  He and wife Kathy have sold their boat but he captains and manages a motor yacht out of St. Thomas.  He gave us a contact for our refrigerator compressor repair.  We called the company, Reefer Co, just after 8a.m. and they had a very competent person out at our boat by 9:15.  The problem ended up being a burned up wire connection which she replaced.  She checked our freon levels and said everything else was fine.  We fired up the refrigerator/freezer to bring the temperatures back where they needed to be.  The freezer actually was only up to +2 degrees so it had been doing very well.  The refrigerator was up to 60 degrees.

Unfortunately less than an hour later the power at the dock went off.  Evidently St. Thomas has a huge problem with rolling brownouts.  The power was out until sometime late at night.  The marina has a large generator for much of the dock but not for the area where we are docked.   We used our small generator to cool down the refrigerator/freezer.

Charlie and I took a taxi to Crown Bay Marina area to buy some supplies from their Chandlery.  The one at the Yacht Haven Marina was a joke...very few marine items.  The handle for the lid to the freezer had broken off and we needed some shackles to fix the jib. We had lunch there at Tickles, their restaurant.  We finally found a taxi to take us back to Yacht Haven.  while Charlie went back to the boat to fix the jib and freezer handle,  I spent the rest of the day finding out about the grocery stores.  There is a large Pueblo grocery within walking distance.  There is also another smaller store which caters to vegetarian customers.  I finally found out where the laundramat was behind some nearby buildings.  We were expecting our daughter Beth from Oregon to arrive the next evening.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Electricity on the dock came on overnight but was off again at 7:32 a.m.  Charlie finished fixing items on the boat while I spent most of the day doing laundry.  I did 4 loads of sheets, towels, clothing in the morning. After lunch with Charlie at one of the  restaurants at the marina I took our rugs to the laundramat to wash.  It is a hot and humid day.  The electricity evidently goes off and on in different places throughout the city.  The laundramat had it's own generator.  Last Christmas, St Thomas was without water for two weeks.  It sounds more like Iraq than an part of the US. We made up the V berth for Beth to sleep in.  She arrived via taxi about 9:45p.m.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Beth slept late.  She and I went to the two grocery stores to buy groceries for us and her.  She is a vegan so she has different needs than we do.  The small speciality food store had many items she could use. We ate a pizza at the Fat Turtle restaurant at the Marina area.  This Marina caters to very large boats and has a cruise ship dock as well.  The cruise ship dock can hold three ships.  There is a shopping mall adjacent to it and the Marina area.  The Marina area has upscale shops and several restaurants. and a coffeeshop. Charlie worked on the shower sump pump which is not working.  He discovered that  hose was kinked.

Three Carnival Band Trucks at Charlotte Amalie
Charlotte Amalie Waterfront walk

Thursday, April 26, 2012
99 Steps
Beth and I walked downtown to Charlotte Amalie.  St. Thomas is in the middle of Carnival which they celebrate or 10 days.  The juvet had been going on.  I think it started at 4a.m. and went until just after noon.  It looked like a mix of Madis Gras and State Fair with costumes and a rides amid a lot of drinking and dancing in blocked off streets.  They have huge speakers on 18 wheeler flatbed trucks on which competing bands play.  These trucks drive back and forth from downtown to out near the marina playing their loud music.  There were also some decorated floats on flatbed trucks.  Beth and I walked around looking at the historical sights of Charlotte Amalie: Bluebeard's Castle, 99 Steps built by the Danish, Old hotels and churches and a Jewish Synagog which had sand on its floor.  We spent about 3 hours walking up and down the hills of Charlotte Amalie.   Beth bought a couple of items in the market area. There is a nice waterfront walk from the Cruise Ship dock through the Marina area to downtown Charlotte Amalie.  It is about a 2 mile walk.  We can see the pretty city lights from where we are docked.   Charlie stayed on the boat fixing the sump pump again, blowing out a hose and sand papering all the ground contacts.  He  greased the bearings on the propeller shaft.  He also took a taxi ride west of Crown Bay to get one of our propane tanks filled.  We ate dinner at the Mideastern Cafe in the marina area.  It had a number of vegetarian items on its menu.

Friday, April, 27, 2012
Charlie, Beth and I took a Safari Taxi to the Charlotte Amalie ferry dock to catch the ferry to St. John's.  Unfortunately, the taxi took us to the wrong ferry dock so we had to walk back almost half the distance to the St. John's Ferry area.  It was not running today because one of the boats had broken down and the person who fixes it was in Tortola, BVI.  A taxi driver told us this and then drove us to Red Hook where another ferry goes to St. John.  The first taxi cost us $2.00 each and the second cost us $10 each.  The Safari taxis have a yellow taxi sign and only go on the main roads.  They are open air taxis seating about 15--20 passengers.  They look like they are a converted pick-up truck with seats added.  Usually the locals ride them and they cost either $1 -2 depending on how far you ride.

We took the Red Hook Ferry to Cruz Bay on St. John's  From Red Hook, it only takes about 20 minutes and cost $6.00 one way.  We ate lunch once we got to St. John's.  then we caught one of the Taxi Tours of St. John's.  These are in the open air pick-up truck taxis and cost $25 each.  The tour takes from 1 1/2 -2 hours and makes numerous stops and even allows passengers to walk down to the beaches or to the sugar mill ruins.  Due to Charlie's recent back operation, he cannot walk miles so this was a way we could all take an overview of St. John.  Once back to Red Hook, we caught one of the Safari taxis back to the marina which cost us only $2 each.  The Safari taxi cannot be in the ferry parking lot but you can find them just outside.  We also looked at the other IGY marina at Red Hook to decide if we wanted to move the boat there.  We decided it would take our guests another 30 minutes from the airport and cost more in a regular taxi to get to the boat.  There are more interesting restaurants in the Red Hook area.  We ate dinner on the boat.
Annaberg Sugar Mill Ruins
Tour Taxi

Charlie and daughter Beth Barnett at Cinnamon Bay

Saturday, April 28, 2012
Charlie stayed at the boat where he changed the oil and the oil filter in the boat's diesel engine.  Beth and I caught a Safari taxi back to Red Hook to catch the St. John ferry.  We went back to go to Trunk Bay to snorkel.  We caught one of the St. John's taxi's to Trunk Bay.  We had been able to take the 9a.m. ferry so the beach was not very crowded.  This week has been the National Park Week so entry into the park has been free. We rented a locker and a mask and fins for Beth.  I had trouble with my mask leaking, so I could not snorkel with her.   Beth was able to find another person going on the snorkel trail so she wouldn't have to do it alone.  She snorkeled for about an hour.  Then she enjoyed walking along this beautiful beach.
We caught the taxi back to Cruz Bay where we explored the shops in the Mongoose Junction.  We shopped too long so just bought a smoothie for lunch before catching the 3 p.m. ferry back to Red Hook.  We caught another Safari Taxi back to the Marina. We met Charlie for a drink at the Fat Turtle.
This was the last night for Carnival and they had fireworks over the harbor a 9:30 p.m.  We had a perfect seat on our boat to watch them.  The traffic was backed up forever going downtown.   The music trucks kept going until early in the morning!

Sunday, April 29, 2012
Charlie and I stayed at the boat doing various tasks.  Beth walked back into town and then further west to French Town where she met a man who told her a bit about the history of it.  We later enjoyed sitting at the pool in the Marina.  Beth and I saw one of the huge Cruise ships depart.  There were two which departed about the same time.  It was an interesting operation to watch.  We had walked through the shopping area adjacent to the cruise ships.  Most of the shops were closed or were closing.

Monday, April 30, 2012.
This was Beth's last day with us.  She debated going back to St. John or visiting Megens Beach on St. John.  She decided to go to Megens Beach.  She caught a taxi in the cruise ship area as they take passengers from the cruise ships to that beach.  She arrived about 11a.m. and spent several hours exploring the more vacant and secluded areas of this beach.  She also enjoyed about an hours swim there before returning to the Marina.

Charlie and I stayed at the boat.  There was quite a bit of wind; 15-20 knots. We waited until a lull  occurred so we could move the dinghy off the boat to the dock.  We deflated the dinghy, then folded it up, and put lines around it.  Using the halyards we moved it back onto the boat placing it in front of the mast  and lashing it securely.  

Tuesday, May 1, 2012
This is departure day for Beth going back to Oregon and for Charlie going to Chattanootga to visit with his mother.  After a nice breakfast, everyone was packing.  Beth ate her leftovers for lunch.  We saw her off at the taxi stand in the Marina about 12:30.  Charlie and I are lunch at Grand Cru  which is the only upscale restaurant at the marina, but we were disappointed with the quality considering the higher prices. I saw him off  to the airport about 2p.m.  I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening doing our finances: balancing the checkbook, paying bills online, justifying our charge card statements and entering all our receipts.  It threatened rain overnight so I closed the cockpit up.  It did rain later in the evening.  I had a call from Bob Kelly who is coming to help get the boat back to Charleston. Charlie called to say he made it to Chattanooga.

Wednesday,  May 2, 2012
Charlie is in Chattanooga visiting his mother.  I remain with the boat in St. Thomas.  I did the laundry this morning.  I got back to the boat just before heavy rain began.  It must have rained 3 inches in 3 hours.  Our mast sometimes leaks and it was leaking today, so I was trying to use containers to collect the water.  I measured 3 inches of water.  I even heard thunder.  The rain continues off and on probably due to a trough or small front nearby.   I have spent the afternoon and early evening updating our blog.

Tomorrow I will welcome crew members, Carl Beckman and Bob Kelly who will help us get the boat back to Charleston.  They will arrive after 4p.m. tomorrow.  Charlie will arrive Friday after 2p.m.  I will take Carl and Bob to the grocery to help select our provisions on Friday morning.  We may leave St. Thomas on Sat or Sunday depending on weather.

St. Barts to St. Martin

Thursday, April 19, 2012

We had a lovely sail from St. Barts to Marigot Bay in St. Martin with 15 knots of east wind.  We left about 8a.m. and arrived just after noon.  As we passed by  Phillipsburg, which is on the Dutch side of the island, we saw only 2 large cruise ships there.  As many as 10 can be there at a time. At Marigot Bay, we put out a lunch anchor as the Marina takes a lunch hour between 12-2.  The French have their leisurely lunches unlike most of the other islands.  The stores don't close at four but stay open usually until 7 p.m.  After lunch, we obtained a location in the Marina Fort Louis.  One end of the boat is attached to a mooring ball and the other is tied to a dock.  Most boats have their sterns to the dock but since we have a canoe stern, we put our bow to the dock.  We therefore have to climb over the anchor to get off the boat.

Lynn and Dan went ashore exploring the Marigot Bay harbor.  They found nice gallery of a local artist.  I went to a bakery to get some of the wonderful pastries for which the French islands are famous. We went to the Port Royal lagoon area for a dinner at Le Village where we had terrible service!  There are many restaurants there competing for your business. Luckily the food was good.  While walking around Marigot Bay, they noticed that St. Martin has much more trash along its streets than St. Barts.  Trash, empty bottles and cans abound in vacant weedy lots.  In the countryside we saw recycle bins but not in the town area.

Friday, April 20, 2012
The next day, Lynn, Dan and I took a taxi to the Ile of Pinel beach area and rode the wooden "ferry boat" over to the island.  We had a delicious lunch and then  lounged at the beach.  Lynn and Dan enjoyed playing in the water and getting some sun.  The water is beautiful and the beach though crowded with beach chairs and umbrellas is very clean.   Then it was back to the boat for dinner on board.  That night our refrigerator compressor stopped working so we could not cool down the freezer/refrigerator.  We usually do this twice a day for 2 hours each time.  While we were gone, Charlie had put more antifreeze into the generator and checked the generator oil.

Saturday,  April 21, 2012

Lynn and Dan went ashore exploring again finding a museum giving the history of St. Martin.  Since Lynn and Dan were to fly out today, we had a snack on shore at a French cafe at the harbor.  They took a taxi for the airport and Charlie and I had lunch at the cafe, seafood crepes.  We planned to leave for our overnight sail to St. thomas about 2p.m. but forgot about the marina office being closed between 12-2.  We did not leave until 1510 (3:10 p.m.).


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Saint Barths

Friday, April 13, 2012

We had following seas and SSE winds almost all the way to St. Barths. We only had the main sail up and we motor sailed most of the way as winds were usually only 11-15 kts on our stern. We had left Jolly Harbor about 6p.m. (1800hrs) and arrived in Gustavia about 9a.m. (o900). We rested a couple of hours and then went to the Port Authority to check in. French island check in is so easy and quick! We first found an ATM and then we had a leisurely lunch at the route of the Bouchaniers. Then we went back to the boat to rest some more. It was sunny and very hot!

Saturday- Sunday, April 14-15, 2012
We had made a list of chores to do before the arrival of our daughter Lynn and her husband Dan on late afternoon Sunday. We spent most of this day and Sunday doing those chores. We had to move the cruising spinnaker out of the V-berth to in front of the mast so they would have space to sleep!
The winds were high these two days 15-15kt gusts and we had scattered showers. We went to shore about 5:30 to wait for Lynn and Dan to arrive from the airport only to discover that there had been no flight on Sunday due to the high winds! The ferry boats from St. Martin were full to overflowing with passengers due to this. Once we discovered this we imagined that they would have to find a place to stay in St. Martin overnight. They we saw them on the LAST ferry of the day! They had arrived in St. Martin in time to change their plans and catch that last ferry! We welcomed them and had dinner on shore at Le Repaire. Then back to the boat to settle them in for the night.

Monday, April 16, 2012
We let our visitors sleep in as they had had a long day of traveling from Chicago and then the frantic change of plans to catch the ferry. We went ashore for lunch and allow them to explore the Gustavia area. We did a bit of shopping in the grocery store and bakeries. We had to get our french bread for pate. We had lunch at the famous Le Select (hambugers). Then we walked to the Shell Beach for a couple of hours of relaxing and sunning, but not too much to burn them! Back to the boat for dinner.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012
We got ashore about 10:30 and checked out the times for "The Yellow Submarine" . It had a "tour" at 11a.m. which we went on. We saw a number of variety of fish, an eagle ray, turtles, coral, scuba and snorklers. The tour included a sunken ship (100 Ft + fishing vessel sunk in a hurricane) and the nearby reef. there were many yellow snappers, , a puffer fish, sergent majors, blue parrot fish, nurse sharks, baracuda, etc.
Our tour was followed by lunch at "Le Bar De L'oubli" which is the bar of forgetting where we could also get online. We checked the weather for the next few days to ascetain the best time to sail to St. Martin. Charlie stayed there while Lynn, Dan and I walked up to the Lighthouse. The road up gave us great views of the whole harbor. We picked up Charlie and back to the boat for dinner. Overnight the winds died down a bit.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Another bright and sunny day on ST. Barths! After breakfast Charlie fixed one of the bilge pumps by replacing the diaphram which had split. Then he put antifreeze into the engine. So we did not get ashore until about lunch time. We ate a long leisurely lunch at Le Repaire and then went on an island tour via taxi. Our taxi driver/guide had grown up on St. Barths so he was very informative. Dan and I had made a mad dash to the bakery before it closed to buy some more delicious breakfast pastries. After the tour, we went to the Port authority to check out for tomorrow. Then Charlie and Sharon went to The Bar of L'oubli to get online while Lynn and Day hiked up to Ft. Karl above the Shell Beach. We will go back to the boat, take the dinghy out of the water and put it up on the deck for our sail to St. Martin tomorrow. The winds are forecast to be 10-15 from the NE and E. It should only take us about 4 hours. We plan to leave by 0900.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Enjoying Antigua

April 6, 2012
We took the dinghy into Nelson's Dockyard where we
solved my HotHotHot problem and Charlie found an electrician to go to the boat and check out our battery bank. After tightening some of the connections, and giving some advice, the battery bank was judged OK. I was able to
find some good bakery items at the Nelson's bakery but the Liquor store/market left much to be desired.

We had lunch at "Catherine's" on the Slipway side of English Harbor. It was recommended highly in articles and by a friend. It lived up to its billing.
I am always amazed at how relatively small these famous harbors are. Antigua Race week is a week or so off, but it is filling up. there were empty spaces, but I guess they
were reserved as the "Marina" did not answer our calls. Several boats were being worked on at Slipway Marina/Boatyard as well.
We went back to the Nelson's Dockside for Seafood Friday put on by the Pepper and Ladder Restaurant. They must have had seating for 100 outside some under tents, with 4 food tents. The food was fabulous! The music was great and mellow and with a full
moon under the stars, who could complain!

Saturday, April 7, 2012
We had a leisurely breakfast and headed in to the chandleries for some odds and ends. Then we walked over to Falmouth Harbor. Due to Easter Weekend, many small restaurants were not open, but we found Mad Mongoose whose speciality was hamburgers so big that I couldn't eat all of mine! Charlie enjoyed the local Antigua beer. the Mad Mongoose had a take off of Van Gogh's flowers in a vase (see picture)

We did finally find a larger market where I could by some essentials for the time being. We saw the Breezeway and the Antigua Yacht Club while there. Many big ships were in that harbor as well. Charlie's back was bothering him so we took a cab back to English Harbor.

Sunday, April 8, 2012 (Easter Sunday)

Today arrived with much rain. We had scattered showers in the morning but the sun came out for the early afternoon. Families were on the beach nearby having picnics. Rain came again in late afternoon so we did not go to the traditional Sunday Shirley Heights event. We could hear the music just above us.
Today was also Charlie's Mom's 97th birthday celebrated in Chattanooga with other family members.

Monday, April 9, 2012
We left English Harbor heading for Jolly harbor with the wind directly behind us so we ended up motoring the three hour trip. Jolly harbor reminds me of Fort Lauderdale because it has various tributaries of water with houses lining them each with their own boat
dock. The marina is far in from the coast and well protected. They have a large boatyard. Evidently many boaters pull their boat for Hurricane season and leave them in Antigua. Also the big Antigua Boat weeks start April 19 into May. Some have arrived and are being worked on and others are out practicing or recruiting crew. We are in the marina which
has few finger docks so we have to depart the boat over the anchors on the bow. There are several restaurants and shops nearby. There is also a great big grocery where we will provision.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012
We got our wifi code so we can get online. We also found the laundry and dropped of 2 loads worth ($90EC). We made a trip to the Budget Marine for supplies: oil, line, etc. We actually were able to find the correct rearming kit for one of our SOSpenders that lacked one! We discovered that the yellow salt bobbins are specific for each model. There is a big ornate concrete building here that once was a CAsino. It has been shut down for a few years.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Charlie changed the oil in the generator and disposed of it. He also found out where the Customs offices are so we can go tomorrow and check out. I made a big trip to the grocery store to replenish our stores for this next week. we are trying to spend our EC dollars as we will not need them anymore. Tomorrow (Thurs.) we will leave in late afternoon to sail overnight to St. Barths. This will allow us to arrive early morning on Friday.

Friday, April 6, 2012

4 countries / Islands in 4 days

April 1, 2012
We left Rodney Bay sailing to Fort de France, Martinique. We had a great blustery day of sailing and arrived about 3p.m. The anchorage by the Fort was not nearly as crowded as the last time we were there. Many children were out on the beach playing. Maybe it was a holiday.

April 2, 2012
We had the longest trip the next day, 48 nm, to Roseau, Dominica; but the winds were great and we were sailing along at 7+nm over the ground. We arrived in the Roseau early afternoon. the Sea Cats boat met us and put us on a mooring ball near Anchorage Inn. Of course they did not have the correct change. All along the coast of Dominica the anchorages always seem to be rolly so we rocked all night long.

April 3, 2012
Our next stop was The Saints. All along the lee coast of Dominica we had westward wind although the forecast was E and ESE winds. As we sailed several miles beyond Dominica, we finally picked up good E and ESE winds s all the way to The Saints. we had great sailing! The picture on the right is approaching the small islands of The Saints. the picture on the left shows the windmills on the south side of one of The Saints islands.


We planned to anchor off the biggest island as we did last time hoping to find enough space. BUT since we were there in 2011, The Saints has put in 60-80 mooring balls! You just
pick up a vacant one! It was great. Eventually the harbor boat came around to collect. Luckily I had some uro change left over from the previous trip. It cost 11E.

April 4, 2012
Off to the next island/ country: Guadeloupe. The Saints are only about 8 nautical miles from the coast of Guadeloupe.n We had great winds until we hit the lee coast of Guadeloupe where we again experienced west winds all along the lee coast. There was plenty of wind so we sailed almost all the way to Deshaies on the north end of Guadeloupe. We had beautiful blue skies and great winds. It was a relaxing sail. We anchored near the shore at Deshaies. They now have a new dinghy dock near the Blue Pearl. Before one had no choice but to tie up in the creek on the south end of the town. The harbor was very crowded. Several very large boats were anchored there. We were able to get online with a HotHotHot site so we could check the weather for our sail to Antigua the next day.

April 5, 2012
We left Deshaies about 0800 heading for Antigua 42 n miles to the north. The winds were great; E to ESE at 15-20. It was a fast but comfortable ride. We arrived at English Harbor about 2:30 so we quickly launched the dinghy, put the engine on it and sent Charlie in to Customs. We couldn't get a slip so we anchored in 11 feet water in Freeman Bay at the entrance of English arbor. Toward the evening a very unusual boat anchored next to us. It eviden
tly did not have an engine so three dinghies pushed it into the anchorage. We are calling it the "Zebra boat".