Monday, April 30, 2012

Anguilla

We made it to Anguilla on Wednesday. Jenna caught another barracuda. durn we were so excited that it might be an edible fish. We had a great time in Road Bay. Walked the beach and the road and made connections from the book "a trip to the beach". did somewhat of a pub crawl found a great place called Sandbar where we got mojitos made with fresh cucumber and mint. was so refreshing. and then back to the boat for tacos. We never got any provisions so pickins were slim.

Thursday we went to a marine park but were not thrilled with it, and then made our way to Meads Bay to find the infamous "Blanchards" restaurant beach bar. had a thrilling ride in the dingy with surf on the beach, jenna was the star, a good lunch at Blanchards, a fun swim at the oceans edge and then pushed the dingy through the surf, kirk and andrew got in and Jenna, Kelly and I swam back to the boat. My the ocean had quite a current and i was fully clothed in my sun protection so i was the last back to the boat. Was a lovely anchorage so we hung out there for a while (i took a nap). Anguilla only lets you anchor in two places and Road Bay was the closest so back again.

Friday we came back to Marigot cleared back into St Martin and went up to Grand Case. we went out to dinner and it was way way toooooo much money. will not make that mistake again.

Kirk has become quite adept at finding the french bakeries no matter what anchorage in St Martin. There was a good deal of french pastry consumed and mass quantities of baguettes consumed.

Saturday was a busy day with laundry, kel and gang leaving, karen and andy arriving. we are back in marina as big winds and seas are supposed to arrive. is much easier to get off at a dock with all your luggage than it is to dingy in with high seas.

Sunday we did provisions and headed back to Grand Case. big swells and big wind chop. saw 28 knots on the way here. having fun with karen and andy.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

from bvi's to st mnartin

We left bvi's at 2 am or so and arrived in st martin Baie De Marigot about 1 pm on Thursday.  was an uneventful passage.  thank you jesus!  we cleared in and had some dinner and then caught up on sleep.  Friday we went into town and got lots done.  figured out how to deal with customs and kelly, walked around the town some.  hiked to the grocery store, had lunch in a bistro pretty close to the dingy dock, made a reservation for the boat in the marina so when kelly and gang arrived it would be easy.  

After many delays kel, andrew and jenna arrived around 6:30 Saturday night.  we were going to eat on the boat but went to town and ate at the same little bistro.  is so good to see them.  we are having fun.

sunday kirk kel and jenna went to store via the dingy and got provisions then we sailed and hooked a fish but lost him, anchored in Baie Grand Case.  it is the bay where all the fancy french restaurants are.  Kel, Andrew, Jenna and Kirk all went to town and checked it out.  Kirk walked the streets and looked at all the menu's Kel, Andrew and Jenna walked the beach.  We had a great dinner on the boat thanks to the meat kel brought .  we were all beat from the sun.

Monday, determined to catch a fish Kirk, kelly and andrew made another dingy trip to the marine store and brought back fishing supplies.  we then went out to deep water to try for a fish, but no luck.  came back and anchored in same Bay, had another spectacular dinner and went ashore for desert.  Whewwee  it was good but the price was high high high.  

Tuesday   as i am writing this, kel kirk andrew and jenna have just swum ashore.  we picked up a mooring ball at Ile Tintamarre.  it is in the hot sun part of the day so i stayed in the shade on the boat.  Kelly caught a 40 inch barracuda on one of the lures Nathan sent down with her.  Thanks Nath.  Don't know where we will go from here.  the sailing has been great.  we have had a reef in for two days and have flown along.  Is so wonderful to see the kids.  Our sailing friends made it over to st. martin this morning.  Yeah

Wednesday   we had a lovely night at the Ile tintamarre.  up and away this am to fish, provision and see about going to anguilla.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

leaving the bvi's




We have had a wonderful time here in BVI's   we met up with our friends one white tree on friday and have spent a few days with them catching up.  we went through the storm with them.  they left north sound a few minutes ago to go have fun in the bvi's and will meet us in st martin in a few days.  We leave tonight (wee hours of the morn actually) to head to st martin.  is about 80 miles so hopefully we will sail (the winds look good) the seas are not supposed to be high.  kirk is excited for a passage not to be a huge downer.  

Storm approaching

This was looking out the cut before the big blow came. Pretty nasty clouds.

Gun creek

Sitting in gun creek while Kirk clears us out of the bvi.

Leverick bay

This is the view from gun creek looking over the bay to Saba rock

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Sunset at Benure Bay. Wow

Pelly in the water fishing. Not same one as in tree

Pelican in tree. Sorry little out of focus

Another view of Benure bay

Kirk the pirate in Benure bay

Benure bay, Norman island bvi

benure bay

we have been back in benure bay for two days. It is my favorite. I saw two walking fish yesterday. They went a long way. Something must have been chasing them. We see turtles, fish, and watch the birds fish. The water is clear and you can see the bottom 20 feet deep. We can see our anchor. Is a wildlife paradise.

We are waiting for a weather window to go to st Martin to meet Kel, Andrew and Jenna. Looks like next Thursday which would be perfect. Hope it holds out. So excited to see the kids. Our friends one white tree who have been stuck in puerto Rico for almost 4 weeks are on the move and hope to be here tomorrow. Yeah. I hope they go to st Martin with us as well. Is always nice to have a buddy boat when you cannot see land.

Sorry no pictures of this beautiful place. I am on my iPad. Maybe next time


Donna

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Flamingos


Anegada


Anegada

Saturday - We had a great sail over to Anegada.  I think Kirk was the happiest I have seen him.  We had a lovely dinner on shore.  Way too expensive.

Easter Sunday -   We went into Pam’s Kitchen early.  She was busy making hot cross buns, cinnamon buns and what she called Easter babies which were cooked bread in the shape of a baby with a hard boiled egg in the head with a face drawn on it.  We waited for the cinnamon buns to come out of the oven.   Watching her roll out French bread, make brownies etc.  and the smell   oh soooooo good.  Kirk was in heaven when his cinnamon bun was finally ready.

Kirk had set up for us to rent a car to tour the island and we had a blast.  Saw all kinds of wildlife. Met interesting people at cow wreck beach and just marveled at the desert like setting, barren and rugged.  The roads in some places were just rocky, rutty, paths.  At one point we took a wrong turn and ended up in the salt flats which we were warned not to go to as you get stuck.

Monday -  We sailed back to Jost Van Dyke.  Was a glorious sail.  I fished and caught a barracuda.  Durn.

We had a most interesting night.  We went to Corsair’s for dinner as kirk heard they had really good pizza.  That was after two bananwackers at foxy’s , actually I had two drinks, kirk only one and my second was a BBC which was desert in a cup.  At Corsair’s we talked to Vinny (I could write a whole blog post of him and the bar)  the owner and bartender.   He called the local nurse practioner who runs the clinic and he  came down to the bar and confirmed that my foot problem is tendonitis. Yuk.    We also met the man that JB Osborne worked for years ago.  Was another one of those times where the world gets smaller and you meet people that are extraordinary and go out of their way for you. 

I think that is the best part of this trip.  It has been the people you meet and the cultures you experience. 

I believe we are off to the other side due to weather.  Hope
we can sail.



 
Leaving Virgin Gorda.  you can barely see the reef we anchored behind.  there are boats located there in the picture.




Loblolly beach 




Kirk being bartender at Cow Wreck Beach




Silly Crab at Cow Wreck.  I think he is a hermit crab and he outgrew his shell and was along the shore line.  Kirk took a bunch of pictures of him.  I watched him and laughed out loud.  His eyes would bug out and he would put down all his legs to stop when a wave was taking him back out to sea.
  Sometimes he just got rolled over.  I decided that I was relaxed as I laughed out loud at his antics














Wild bulls by cow wreck.   They are all over the island.  The guy we rented the car from said that some of the island people eat them.  He does not.  He does however eat the wild goats.  we also saw burros or donkeys.  they did not like their pictures taken.  we did see the flamingos   i hope the post with that picture works.

Monday, April 9, 2012

April 4th, 5th, 6th, 2012



 

We left Marina Cay early in the am and headed over to Cam Bay on Great Cameno which is across the island ( a very thin part of Great  Cameno island) from Lee Bay.  We had seen an anchor light and wanted to check it out.  We inched our way in around coral and reefs and decided that it would be an ok anchorage.

 

Out into the sea once again it was rough and we could not sail, bummer, heading towards North Sound on Virgin Gorda.  This used to be my favorite place, but is now more developed and the water is not as beautiful as it once was.  Still lovely but I am now stuck on Benure Bay as it had the best water.  Lee Bay was pretty nice also.  We anchored (a first for us in North Sound ) right behind the reef and it was very pretty.   You looked at Necker Island (Richard Branson's) and there was Necker Bell either anchored or on a mooring ball right in front.  Behind us was Mosquito Island that he just bought also. The excitement was an Oyster rendezvous  in North  Sound. Oyster is a brand of boat Kirk always wanted and there were a ton of Oyster boats to watch parade right in front of us since they had to skirt the reef to get into the harbor.  The highlight was the 120 foot oyster with 5 spreaders on the mast.  Whew was it big.  Then kirk read that it demasted in calm conditions.  Ok  move on from that one.

 

 

We picked up a mooring ball at Leverck Bay Marine the next day and did laundry and ate lunch out (last time for that) the prices were out of reality.  Laundry was cheap though.  Went in that night for the "show" and happy hour and met a couple that were cruising back north.  They were interesting. 

 

Following morning was chores.  Kirk cleaned the track in the mast to get rid of salt and dirt.  I helped but only to fill soapy water bottles, get the hose, pick up metal filings.  I was the support.  While it was drying, I worked on the never ending stainless that was rusting like a champ from our stay in ocean world.  I was climbing all over the arch on the back of the boat and wakes would come roll the boat even while on the mooring ball. 

 

We moved to the anchor (cheaper) in the afternoon after going to the store for last minute provisions, I did some more cleaning and then got ready to head to anegada.

 

We did have one booboo.  Kirk got a little fish hook (actually two and both had barbs on them) in his hand last night and it was awful so now we have a new rule.  No hooks left on fishing poles.

 

We are sailing YES THAT WOULD BE SAILING to Anegada, I am fishing, not catching.  Just threw the last banana over.  Durn I wish I had remembered it earlier.  The only thing I have caught is seaweed.  


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

culebrita continued



Culbrita pics.  this was a special place with special people.


View looking towards St. Thomas.  You can faintly see it below the cloud.


Nathan also known as Mr Daredevil himself.  Always has been


Sarah.  Need I say more?

Cactus growing out the side of rocks.  There were trees, various kinds of cactus, scrubs, tall grasses all growing on this one little rock peninsula.   Way cool.  There were green slate slabs and other colors in the rocks.  

L to R little people:  Sarah, Donna and Nathan. Kirk was standing up on a ledge on other side. (I wonder where Nathan gets it???)
Notice the little pools that have filled when the water crashed in.  This pic was a wave going out.  It got rougher as the morning progressed and more water was coming in further.

\



Tuesday, April 3, 2012

April 3, 2012

So this morning we got a lesson on fishing from the locals.  There were 3 guys in a maybe 15 foot boat.  Two elderly gents and one younger one.   They came into the anchorage and the one older one got in the water while the other older one showed the younger one how to hold the nets, set the nets, bring in the nets.  It was fascinating to watch.  I said to kirk I bet they have fished this way for hundreds of years. 

 

We picked up anchor cause it was going to be a scorcher hot today with not much breeze and we SAILED  yes we SAILED around Norman island.  Out in the ocean which was flat calm.  We did have to motor some but we did get to sail.  Actually kirk sailed and I fished.  And I fished and I fished.  But I did not catch.  Bummer   we were hoping for fish for dinner.  So when the wind completely died. We fired up the engines, pulled in the fishing lines and headed for cooper island.  Went ashore there and they were as snotty as the last time we went there 8 years ago.  So up and away we went across Sir Francis Drake Channel to Marina Cay.

 

Now the fun begins.   We went ashore to check the menu which agreed with us both and then went to the bar and ordered  birthday bushwackers.   They were huge in these big tall fancy curvy glasses.  If you drank two I think you would not be walking very well out of there.  We sat in the outside corner of the bar looking out over the reef, feeling the breeze.

 

Two recent quotes from kirk

 

The other day  -  blackbeards ale, cheezits and a good breeze   as good as it gets

 

Todays sitting in the bar was  -  Now this really does not suck

 

He is happy.

 

Once again the fish are jumping all around me but not on my bait!

 

Where is uncle jay when you need him?  Or paw paw for that matter.


April 1 and 2


We woke up to a beautiful morning in Trellis bay.  I can't get over how much cleaner and clearer the water is.  I wonder if it is because they now is the guide books say to empty hour holding takes when your are at least 1000 yards off shore, whereas in prior years here they did not use the holding tanks.  Anyway it is much clearer and cleaner.  You could see the reefs plain as day and yet some people just drove their dingys over the reefs and would bump.  It kinda got funny to watch.  Kirk would try to warn them but no one paid much attention until their engine had hit bottom and they were stuck. (that is until they pulled their engines up.

 

We hauled out of there and made our way to Road Town Tortolla to get provisions, a national park permit (to use their mooring balls) and to get a fishing license.  Was a long hot morning but when we got underway I was fishing (no luck) as we crossed the Sir Francis Drake channel and headed to a little anchorage called Lee Bay where we had been before.  Fortunately, it already had 4 boats in it so we headed down to an anchorage called Benures Bay.   Oh my gosh.  This place is fabulous.   We are in sand about 20 feet deep and you can see the bottom as clear as can be. We fished last night and  I have been fishing this morning and you can watch the fish snub your bait.  Is hysterical.  We can see our anchor chain.  It has done loops.  I do not think I have ever seen water this clear.  So our not getting into Lee Bay was a great blessing.   This anchorage filled up and so that was entertaining to watch all the boats vie for position.  There is a big reef a bit away and if we feel energetic we way go over this morning.  No need to snorkel, you can just look out the side of the dingy and see it all, just like standing looking down from the boat.  Amazing.

 

Since we have been here we have seen turtles, some big fat fish about 2 ½ feet long, tons of the little blue fish, a big ray, a little skate, schools of little white fish.  Just no takers on our bait!

 

Last night kirk was lamenting that no one was here to experience what he was feeling.   Is really nice, peaceful, beautiful place