Michael and Susan left Florida in 2007 aboard their Westsail 43 INFINI to fullfill a dream of full time cruising.
Mar 10 - The dreaded St. Helena / Ascension roll
Our first night here in Clarence Bay was comfortable with very little roll, as the wind was constant. Take the wind away...our second night was not fun with the sideways roll. Some yachties on the VHF have stated they think the roll here in Clarence Bay, Ascension is less than that at St Helena, but I disagree. Of course, hull shape has a lot to do with roll, but even the cats are rolling here. Given time, I guess you get used to it, but time is something we didn't get upon arrival. It appears our faxed permit paperwork, along with that from several other yachts, never appeared, although we have proof of successful fax transmission to the office here. Maybe they need to get a new fax machine? At any rate, we were granted 3 days, and graciously assured that an extension would be no problem should we desire it. Island time; no worries. Aboard, I was kept busy repairing a leak on the high pressure side of the water maker system; even bronze fittings eventually wear out with constant immersion in salt water. As I was handling that chore, Matt went trolling in the dinghy and hooked up a nice mahi-mahi. A sign ashore said that if you can't catch fish around Ascension, you can't fish. Wish they had a T shirt with that on it. Turtles swim nearby the boat daily, and there are hundreds of black fish we call pirhana fish, although they're actually a type of trigger fish that eat coral, or whatever you throw overboard, including your toes; I have the nip to prove it. A few more particulars of the island. Ascension is not as developed for tourism as is St Helena. Rightly so, as this serves basically as a military installation, not a tourist destination. There are a few small stores with very basic provisions, but not the fresh fruit and veggies found at SH. Restaurant meals at a few places in town must be ordered in advance for service; hours are varied. There is one small bank (no US personal or travelers checks accepted), and wifi internet may be obtained at the hotel, 5 pounds for one hour, or 10 pounds for 24 hours; only good at the hotel, not aboard. The dinghy landing is, we think, a bit easier than SH, as long as there's no significant swell. A stern anchor must be used on a long line, and a long bow line is tied to a SS railing; you'll figure it out. Officials are found at the shipping office just up the road on the right side from the landing, as well as in the Police station. Georgetown is a small town; anything out of town requires a car rental (15 pounds a day). Pic: Sunrise arrival to this volcanic island.