5-26 Prickly Bay, Grenada

Today's sail was another story...First off, the predicted E wind never materialized at all. It was ESE-SE the entire day, but the wind was so variable, going from 6-12 knots, then back and forth before you could make any adjustments. Furthermore, we had decided to go down the east (windward) side of Grenada to Prickly Bay, not the west (leeward) side. We had anticipated 10-15 knots E wind, so being on the lee shore of the island wasn't going to produce too much stress. Well, the entire day was a motor sail, which may have been a good thing, as the current was really strong, at least 2 knots trying to push us west (onto the island...) for most of the passage. We had no issues; waves were 4' or less, wind sucky as noted above, so for sure it would have been a motor trip on the west side of the island also. At least we got to see the entire east coast, which we hadn't seen before. The water does get a bit thin in spots, especially if you're looking for one of the other popular bays on the east coast, but most deep draft vessels probably wouldn't have too much trouble. We anchored in 26' and noted there seemed to be a lot more mooring buoys around from our previous visit here, thereby restricting the areas for anchoring. Officialdom wasn't in their office at 1500 hours (posted hours 0800-1600...), so we'll try again tomorrow. We're having a beer at the Prickly Bay Marina bar/restaurant, free wifi, good food.

5-25 Tyrell Bay, Carriacou

We had a delightful beam-reach sail to Tyrell Bay in ENE wind. We're going to anchor here overnight, not check in, and leave early morning for Grenada. Life's good.
Pic: Leaving Carriacou early am

5-18 New photo albums posted

Sue's posted the Guadeloupe and Antigua albums. Enjoy! Unfortunetly, not sorted out...no more picassa. Google plus won't show whole albums. :(

5-15 Admiralty Bay, Bequia

Pos: N13deg00.13min / W061deg14.65min. In Marigot, we raised anchor at 0630 intending to stop at Vieux Fort overnight. When we got down to the southern end of the island at about 0900, we decided that going the 11 nm to windward to get there (Vieux Fort) wasn't worth the aggravation as just going direct to Admiralty Bay, Bequia. We were on one corner of an isosceles triangle, our location at the southwest side of the island, and Vieux Fort, further east; the distance from either to Admiralty Bay was the same, 50 nm. We wanted to get to the anchorage during daylight hours but weren't too worried; we had been there before so a night entrance would have been fine. As conditions turned out, our average speed was 7+ knots. We made good time across the channel, and, as expected, hit the calm in the lee of the southern end of St Vincent and had to motor sail for a few hours. There, an onshore SW 10 knot breeze developed, then changed to an 18-21 knot E wind once in the Bequia channel, so we romped to the anchorage by 1700, with time to anchor in 14' of water, put the sail covers on and take a swim before dusk. It's been a full day.

5-12 More photo albums posted...you've been waiting for this one....

Sue's been busy...additional albums of Dominica as well as Dominica Tours are now online. And, the one you've all been waiting for that has taken so long to collate...Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta 2016. It's huge - 111 pictures, most unlabeled, and there are a few repeats, but I'm hoping it gives everyone the flavor of being there without getting too bored! None of our previously posted albums are this large, so, no, we're not starting a new trend...this was a special occasion with an abundance of photo ops over a period of one week. Sit back, enjoy, and let us know what you think!

5-12 New photo album posted

Sue's posted the Martinique album and I'm going thru the 385 pictures taken at the Classic Boat Regatta to cull that group down to a more moderately sized album. Unfortunately, besides the very slow internet, I forgot my mags this morning....

5-11 Rodney Bay, St Lucia

We had a great run down to Rodney Bay, anchor-up to anchor-down in 4.25 hours to cover the 27 nm (approx) distance; average speed in the low 6's, highest speed 8.3 knots. It's like seeing an old friend again; good to be back in familiar territory. We checked in with Officialdom then went over to Island Water World. Sea Hawk paints have come out with a new anti-foul paint called Islands 99 Plus. Introductory pricing $190/G (for you non-boaters, that's considered a good price). Since there is no IWW in Trinidad, we purchased our paint and are all set. Otherwise, we bought some veggies from Gregory who stopped by in his veggie boat, said hi to Maggie the veggie lady in the marina, and will bring in laundry and catch up to posting some photo albums tomorrow. Duty-free fuel is available here, and is, along with that in Antigua, considered amongst the best price for fuel (ie, cheapest) in the Caribbean.
Pic: Even before our anchor was set, Gregory was by with his veggie boat....we always need something!

5-10 Anse Chaudiere

Pos: N14deg28.86min / W061deg04.85min. Yesterday morning we left Roseau for St Pierre, Martinique. Actually, we almost didn't leave Roseau as we couldn't get our mooring lines untangled. At 0530, I called Greg, who graciously came out to help. It took him about 20 minutes to unwind the Gordian Knot and we were off. Without his assistance, we would have had to launch the dinghy or leave our lines on the buoy, neither a good choice. Winds were ESE 20-25, gusts to 32, and we anchored in St Pierre before 1400. This morning, some fishermen woke us at 0530 yelling in rapid French that we were too close to their nets (we understood their sign language…). Actually, we were nowhere close to their nets…Also, we had anchored in the same spot two times previously, and there were no nets around when we anchored yesterday. Whatever…maybe these guys didn't have their second cup of joe or something. At least Sue couldn't blame me for waking her up early…blame the fishermen! As compensation, we had a fast sail to here. Wind was ESE 8-20, seas flat, and we barreled along at 6.5-7.9 knots (…couldn't get that 8.0 figure). So, we're anchored in 20' and if the weather forecast holds, will depart for St Lucia tomorrow. At this junction, I should note that the weather predictions haven't been particularly accurate…

5-8 Rockin' & Rollin' in Roseau; Happy Mother's Day!

Pos: N15deg17.39min / W061deg22.74min. It is only 10 nm from Batalie Beach to Roseau, but more than expected (and certainly not forecast) adverse wind, current and chop found us taking three hours to get there; some days are like this. Once closer, the Sea Cat moorings launch came out to meet us, and Greg took our lines to secure us to a large mooring, which helped a lot as the wind had crept up to 25-30 knots in the gusts and the whitecaps were impressive. We felt the 30EC/night charge reasonable, and were also able to give Greg our small bag of trash to dispose of. We noted that most of the yachts heading south came in to Roseau, as conditions had deteriorated to the point where like minds felt it prudent to wait it out. Unfortunately, the roll here is horrible, and everyone's masts are oscillating thru at least 20 degrees of arc. Doyle's Guide describes lots of things to plan and do around here, but I suspect we'll just relax, hold on, and see if the prediction for lots of rain holds true. Our watermaker has been deconditioned, so we'll either need rain water or will have to get somewhere to top off our tanks. Lastly, a very Happy Mother's Day goes out on this Sunday morning; we hope everyone has a wonderful day!

5-6 Update

Well, here's the report: the food is delicious! The various lobster platters served are large, tasty and well priced. Further, we had met two scuba enthusiasts, Thekla, from Germany, and Melanie, from Switzerland, and they had arranged their dive master to bag enough lion fish for all of us. The kitchen staff prepared them with expertise, and it was the first time for us to eat lion fish. The meat was white, flaky, and very tender and we picked the bones clean. Thanks Thekla and Melanie! We also had some mahi; again, delicious. Roger and his wife, Marcela are gracious hosts, and we highly recommend this stop to other cruisers. Btw, if you need any further inducement for coming here, cruisers are offered an 8% discount when paying in cash. This morning, we're moving about 10 miles south to Roseau, staging for our passage to Martinique next week. We're expecting rain and squalls to come through Sunday, so will wait out the weather there. Lastly, Happy Mother's Day to all our friends and relatives - we hope you have a wonderful time; we're sending our love and hugs!

5-5 "EYE CANDY" Picture album posted

This is an album that is long overdue and one you won't want to miss. No, it's not beautiful people wearing skimpy (or no) bathing suits. It's much more subtle, enjoyable and provocative. Let us know what you think and, most of all...enjoy!

5-5 Sunset Bay Club, Batalie Beach, Coulibistri, Dominica

Pos: N15deg27.08min / W061deg26.85min. We had lunch with Bill & Joanna of sv Baidarka at Le Triangle on the beach; good food and company. Early this morning, we left for Dominica, bypassing Portsmouth and going about 8 miles further south to Batalie Beach. It was a lovely sail in 9-18 knots E-ESE winds, which turned to calm, then NW in the lee of Dominica. At Batalie Beach, a Belgium expat, Roger, and his wife, Marcela, own the Sunset Bay Club, and we were told by some cruising friends to not miss their lobster dinner. Amongst the ususal resort amenities, they also offer free moorings, FW showers, a pool, and bar/restaurant. Walking around the resort, we saw lots of different birds, plants and trees. Roger and his staff have been busy. We'll be going back for our lobster, so will report on that soon.
Pic: Infini's the only sailboat here. View from the 4 Seasons Restaurant.

5-2 Les Saintes

Pos: N15deg52.00min / W061deg35.43min. Our baked goods were delivered at 0700, as promised. By 0730, we departed for Les Saintes, having looked at the weather and figuring it wasn't going to get any better for a bit, and also staging us so much closer for our run to Portsmouth, Dominica. Of interest, the forecast SE wind never developed in the lee of Guadeloupe. What we got was W-NW winds, from 6-12 knots. At the end of the island, the wind finally changed to ESE-SE, but, again, was variable from 4-18 knots. Lots of sail changes, lots of motor sailing in the calms. Overall, however, it was a lot drier than our sail yesterday, with the exception of one rain squall that packed winds up to 34 knots and white-out conditions; it only lasted for about 20 minutes. We're anchored in 31' and plan to stay for a few days; all's well aboard.
Pic: Always entertaining watching the different classes of sailing instruction. Amazing how they maneuver amongst the moored boats and many fast ferries.

5-1 We're on the move!

Pos: N16deg18.49min / W061deg47.92min. After a month in Antigua and Barbuda, it felt good to slip the anchor and head south. We had a boisterous run to Deshaies, Guadeloupe in 18-25 E-ESE-SE winds, anchoring in an incredibly busy spot. Fortunately for us, a private fishing boat failed to hook up and left a prime area just as we got there, freeing it up for us to drop the hook and relax. After, about another 6 boats came in, a few tried to anchor too close but were actually called off by our neighbors, and we realized what a prime piece of real estate we had lucked into. The currents here have everyone turning in circles, so you really need a lot of room to anchor and spin around. One piece of advice to those following: if you're late and it looks tight, anchor outside everyone else. The holding will be good, although a bit deeper, but no one will get upset and chase you off. Just saying. One of the locals, (Lydia) has a business delivering groceries, ice, vegetables, meats, fish, lobster, and wine & spirits to the boats, and will also arrange laundry, taxi, etc. Her cell is +59 06 90 40 0588. We ordered a couple of pan chocolate, pan raison, and baguettes for delivery early tomorrow morning; the good life.