15 October 2007 | Lance Aux E'pines
I had to pick up a few things at Budget Marine today. Martin's Marina is a little off of the beaten track. It is a little walk over the hill to the Prickly Bay area where you can grab a taxi or catch a bus. Instead I decided to bike over to Budget Marine. It is a decent bike ride but great exercise. Getting over the hill from Martins is steep peddling but after that it is a nice flatish run.
The bikes we have aboard are folding bikes from West Marine. Practical Sailor liked them and they have held up well. We haven't used them as much as we should have but they have been very handy in the more urban spots.
We stow them folded in their carry bags in the lazarette. One of the bikes was sitting under the horse for the dinghy outboard. When we go offshore I stow the outboard in the lazarette for safety. Unfortunately it leaked salt water onto the bike. Doing an A/B comparison between the bike that got hit with salt water and the one that didn't really opened my eyes to just how nasty a fluid salt water is. The briny sea had put some serious rust on a lot of unpainted bike parts and had completely eaten through about a third of the spokes on both wheels.
Fortunately there's a bike shop in Grenada. I dropped the damaged bike off and three days later it was respoked and ready to go for a very reasonable price.
As general advice for folks cruising the eastern Caribbean I would have to say skip the bikes. It is a lot of fun to walk and hike and often islands are mountainous without good paths for bikes. When they're not they are often sandy, not good for bikes either. If you love bikes then they great to have and with some looking you can often find some place to go for a ride. I hope we find more fun places to ride ours in the miles ahead.