February 2- Sailing in the British Virgin Islands

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CSS style sheet courtesy of Wally Bryant, on his own sailing adventure!

Tracks may be viewed using Google Earth; *.KMZ files prepared as described here.

6 January.  Club night at the BYC.  Lisa and Tony hosting; we were all treated to two kinds of Shepard's pie; braised beef and turkey, veggies and salad.  Great to visit with friends to start our vacation!

7 January.  Sunny, unseasonably warm in Boston at 32 F.  We decided to take a different route to the BVI this year.  Direct from Boston to St. Thomas, then the fast ferry to Roadtown.  At least we could sleep in to 5:30 AM.  The direct flight to the USVI was very convenient.  In St. Thomas, the Moorings then had a taxi waiting to take us over to the ferry terminal.  Decent lunch and a few libations upstairs while waiting to depart.  On Island Time now!  Imagine our surprise when our ride to Roadtown was Boston's very own Provincetown III!  Turns out the crew came down Thanksgiving day; seven days in transit.  They didn't seem to love being in the USVI though.  Oh well.  Quick ride over to Tortola but dreams of an easy connection suffered standing in line for an hour to clear BVI Customs.  The agent was very interested in Chris' electric violin.  She jumped at his offer to play a few measures and was delighted with a Bach sonata.  To heck with everyone waiting behind us.  The Moorings base is a five minutes ride away.  Checked in, boat and provisions all good.  Tired, so we opted for dinner at the base; salad bar, veggies, mahi mahi and barbeque chicken.  Happy to crash in the air conditioned of Mystique, our Moorings Benneteau 37.2 (nice to have shore power the first night).

 8 January.  85F; not too hot.   Topped of water tanks and rounded up a few last minutes provisions.  We did have have a delay waiting for the shore staff to sort out an alarm on the panel voltage indicator (poor connection).  Wind was 15-20 knots on the nose all the way to Virgin Gorda; seas 3-4 feet.  Picked up a mooring at the Bitter End Yacht Club.  After a brief stroll ashore followed by  the obligatory sunset cocktails, we enjoyed Sheila's grilled steak, potatoes and salad.  Very nice with the Shiraz.  Blue track

 9 January.  82F. Today was strictly relaxation.  After a late breakfast, motored to the other (and pleasantly more peaceful) end of Gorda Sound.  Grabbed a mooring just off the dock at Leverick Bay Marina.  I really prefer this end of the sound. Sheila and Chris had a swim off the stern.  Chris cleared a plastic bag wrapped around the running grear.  Always nice to have extra provisions and ice close at hand.   We enjoyed a very impressive dinner at the increasingly upscale Leverick Bay Restaurant; salmon and tuna accompanied by a sauvignon blanc.  Gelato for dessert!  Our compliments to the new team.  Orange track

10 January. 80F.  Despite a planned early start, we did not wake up until 8AM!  Crew went into high gear, and we dropped the hook in 30 minutes including Sheila's obligatory coffee.  Nice day for a sail to Anegada.  Winds 15 knots from the SE; 2-3 foot seas.  Very interesting greeting; the first boat in mooring field had full sized, fully inflated and anatomically correct male doll as a figure head lashed to the bow!  We were glad to find a mooring not to close to that boat.  Sheila and I went to Cow Wreck beach on the North side of the island for an outing; another favorite spot.  We enjoyed walking the beach, cold drinks from the bar, and simply sitting in the Adirondack chairs set in the sand.  And then there were the Rum Punches at the Anegada Beach Hotel!  Thanks to Barkeeper Janet for sharing the recipe; very tasty indeed.  Sheila made another great dinner including barbeque chicken, corn with red peppers, and rice accompanied by another sauvignon blanc.  Yellow track

11 January.  82F.  A great day for a casual sail to Trellis Bay at Beef Island.  15 knots from the SE; 2-3 foot seas.  A beam reach most of the way until the wind died near the Dogs.  We moored as usual at Bellamy Cay.  Quick trip ashore for ice and snacks, then over to the Last Resort ("The liver is evil and must be punished") for an afternoon libation.  Everyone grabbed a shower before sunset cocktails.  We had a pretty good dinner at the Last Resort; barbeque ribs and red snapper. Purple track

12 January.  80F.  After breakfast, we headed across the Northern side of Tortola for Soper's Hole.  Being in the lee of the island, it was slow going but we were in no hurry.  Gave Cane Garden bay and Jost van Dyke a pass this trip.  Able to grab one of the few remaining moorings at Soper's.  The crew stayed onboard while I took a walk around the docks and inspected the boats in the boatyard.  Afternoon Painkiller's at Pusser's.  Happy hour continued onboard.  Clean up the provisions night.  Sheila treated us to marinated mahi mahi,;Mrs. Penguin's (our provisioning company) Key Lime pie and cheesecake for dessert!  Green track

13 January.  84F. Everyone slept in.  A bit breezier this AM.  The market on the dock had fresh croissants!  Sheila was delighted with these for breakfast.  Late morning we set sail towards St. John and tacked our way up the Sir Francis Drake Channel to Peter Island; 20 knots in 4 - 5 foot seas.  I always like to make Peter Island our last stop and had made dock reservations earlier in the week.  We arrived mid-afternoon.  Very few boats this year though.  With shore power handy, we decided to hook up and run the AC.  The AC unit kept cycling off; we noticed that there was no cooling water coming from exit.  Christopher and I literally pulled apart the cabin and checked every line all the way to the AC heat exchanger.  Had to blow out the lines; probably plugged at the exit point.  Once we got the cooling water line primed again, it was 90F inside the boat.  We were drenched in sweat and exhausted!  Long showers at the marinain while the AC cooled off the cabin.  Sheila and I walked over to Deadman's Beach.  What a great beach!  Usually, I've been over that way for dinner after dark, so have never seen how nice the beach really is.  Enjoyed walking in the surf and sitting in the lounge chairs on the beach.  The three of us went back for dinner later at the Deadman's Bar and Beach Grille.  Pizza, barbequed chicken and swordfish.  The pizza was actually quite tasty!.  Back aboard,  we packed up most of our stuff in preparation of an early AM trip back to Roadtown.  Red track

14 January.  80F. Early AM departure to Roadtown to catch a noon flight home.  We simply motored back.  Since our last trip, the Moorings now has someone come aboard off the docks to help bring the boat into a slip.  James told me the policy was implemented due to many boats being damaged.  Too bad; getting the boat (and watching others do so) into the slip was always exciting!.  White track



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