More fun visitors
05 March 2013
Monday, Feb 18th
Rest, rest, a little work, then more rest.
I hate to admit it, but it took us a while to recover from the neighbors visit…we have been hanging at the marina the past few days, cleaning, resting, and well, resting. A couple days, one nap just wasn’t enough, so I took two….but we are almost ready to collect Mike & Lynne and head out again.
Friday, Feb 22nd
Relaxing in Privateer Bay
We’ve been busy the past few days. First, heading out to Maho Bay on Wednesday. Unfortunately, the north swell was still running high, and the visibility was nil when we first jumped in the water to snorkel. Mike and I swam to the beach and back and were able to see exactly nothing in the water, barely each other at times…Too bad, since the turtles are here, and we were able to see a few of them when they surfaced around us. Thursday off to Soper’s and BVI Customs, then we spent a few minutes ashore, before heading off to The Bight. We enjoyed the snorkeling here, with crisp clear water, then a calm and peaceful night in My ‘One Particular Harbor’.
Friday, Mike and Lynne decided to explore Norman Island, so off they went in the dinghy for a hike. Several hours later they are returned with great pictures and good appetites after all that exertion! After all, as our good friend Larry said after he hiked Norman…the island is all ‘UP’. Later, we moved over and picked up a mooring outside the caves to explore them. There were several others there swimming and one guy in particular who was feeding the fish who were swarming all around him. We enjoyed staying on the fringes, and watching the show. We picked up a mooring at Privateer this evening in the hopes of catching a great sunset, which we did, with amazing colors. Love this place for that aspect, once we fix the Mooring can bump!
Sunday, Feb 24th
A beat up the channel
Saturday we raised all sail for a beat up the channel to Trellis Bay. This is where it really pays to have extra muscle on board! We put Mike to work raising sails, helming the boat as well as handling the tacks… I never worked so little beating to wind! We had a great 6 tacks up and around Beef Island, right into Trellis Bay. Jim and I were very relaxed when we arrived!
Sunday we headed over to Monkey Point, and enjoyed visiting our friends, until the Jellyfish stings became too much for us and we cashed it in and headed for Spanish Town and fresh water showers and dinner ashore! We had a great dinner at The Rock, with wonderful weather and delicious food and good company. After dinner we walked back to the marina, not really too far or too dark as we had previously thought, and ran into our friend Jonathan….just checking up on us!
Monday, Feb 25th
A day exploring Virgin Gorda
We rented a car today, to better explore the island, so 8:30, after they dropped it off Mike, Lynne and I were off to the Baths, while Captain Jim was doing his usual washing and watering routine. Since the North Swell is STILL running, we didn’t bother carrying our snorkel gear, but enjoyed the hike thru the path with just a few other people and soon were in Devils Bay. I discovered Mike is a bit of a daredevil, and he enjoyed climbing up and over and all around on rocks that I didn’t think were accessible….he proved otherwise! The swells in the bay were as you would expect, and within 20 minutes of us being there, here comes the Parks Ranger with the Red flag. For some reason this did not deter a bareboat group from trying to beach their dinghy on the steep slope of Devils Bay! What a sight! Six somewhat less than agile folks, 3 get out, and try to hold the boat, while two more struggle out, and get knocked down in the swell. The next swell swamps the boat, and so the captain gets out and in his infinite wisdom, pulls the plug to get the water out…while the next several swells pour more and more water in, and knock a few more people over. The Parks Ranger, tells them they cannot leave their dinghy there, so finally 3 of them manage to swim it out and over to the dinghy tie line. At some point, managing to re-plug the dinghy, so that no more water comes in….but no more water is coming out that’s for sure! Finally, they all make it to shore, and the show is over. Good grief, the crazy, crazy things people do!
Mike, the daredevil explores the boulders to the west of the bay while Lynne and I enjoy the shade of the beach. Eventually we stroll a little further on where Mike has discovered a quiet oasis of sand, boulders and palm trees just behind the Bay. A few steps further on from there we discover two more very small, and cairn covered bays open to the west and south. There is certainly more here to see that I have never explored before.
After heading back to collect Jim from the boat we headed over to see the ruins of a copper mine on the south side of the island. A few stone buildings with a magnificent view to the south and east along the coast. After cleaning up back at the marina, we headed East along the ridge road, and enjoyed magnificent views, since it was not raining this time. We had an all wheel drive vehicle, that Mike was driving…thank goodness, and cruised up and over the mountain, to Leverick Bay.
Lynne decided that Conch horns would be a great gift for the family, so there we were out on the pier with Mike trying out the Conch’s and, well…trying being the operative word. There was lots of laughter all around, until Lynne picks up the shell, and blows a perfect pitch, like this was not the first time she EVER touched a conch! Incredible! We think we have a ringer for the conch blowing contest for sure! She made a god showing, but alas, lost to a professional musician of some sort, a nice girl from Missouri.
The drive back to the Marina in the dark was a stress test for Jim…But Mike had everything under control and we made it home safe. A great day of island exploration!
Tuesday, Feb 26th
Yesterday was the full moon, and as the seas are finally laying down now, we decided to head east to Saba Rock, and try to catch the full moon rising out of the sea. We had a great trip again, up the channel, then ducked into the north sound and eventually picked up the perfect can to see the moonrise (or so we thought). We went to shore and explored the Bitter End Yacht Club, and found a little trail that led over to the Biras Creek resort and marina, a beautiful place on the south side of the rise. We discovered a few locals over there…several Iguana, one hanging out right on the dock…we figured he was security.
On our way back, we stopped at Saba rock, and I found something I have been wanting for a long time. A small, silver dime sized medallion, made from the bars and molds from the Atocha, a shipwreck off Key West, very popular all thru the Caribbean. Now I have my piece of booty!
Lynne and Mike decided to swim over to the point of Prickly Pear island to explore around the corner. There was quite a hefty current running in (you remember it Louise!) and so they really had to work to get to shore, but made it there and back just fine. The trip back was even funnier, as Mike was carrying 4 conch shells….this limited his flexibility somewhat, but they made it back just fine!
Well, we tried, but after waiting, til 20 minutes past the time, we decided that moonrise was a bust, do to the heavy cloud cover…Bugger…Skunked again! A little later that night, when we finally saw the moon up, we discovered that we were skunked by more than just the cloud cover….the moonrise this time of year is behind the island…duh!
Thursday, Feb 28th
Wednesday we headed down from the north sound headed to Marina Cay to meet Ocean Jedi. This was a picture perfect sailing day and so we bagged the stop and headed all the way down to Norman Island in one perfect long tack! 20 miles in just over 2 hours…sweet. Just off the east end of Tortola we find a crazy man in a dinghy zipping around the boat. We met him here on the way up and discovered that this was a photographer from Yacht Shots BVI. They take pics of the sailing boats heading up and down the channel, but you should see how crazy these guys zip around in there dinghy’s to get the shots. We’ll have to get online later to see how they have come out.
Today we headed over to the Indians and discovered the very best conditions of the season to snorkel here. The visibility was incredible, and Lynne spotted a turtle just hanging in the coral. Mike and I spotted the largest Barracuda I have ever seen, easily, 5 feet, and Mike, being Mike decided to dive down to see if he could get up close and personal with him…Barry swam away…fortunately! On our last trip around the Indians, Mike spotted an octopus in a war with several fish. The octopus had a fish in one tentacle, and was grabbing for another, while several fish of different species tried to fend it off. When I saw it, he had let go of the fish and was caught in a stare down with 4 fish, 2 hinds, one snapper and another variety…all working together against the octopus. We watched it for 20 plus minutes, before they, the fish, chased the octopus into a hole and it looked like the drama was over. By far the best snorkel I have had at the Indians!
We headed over to Sopers hole for Lunch and discovered Mo and Polly from Motivator also hanging at Pussers. We visited with them a while, and then made arrangements to have Happy Hour on Regenero this evening. A fun visit before they head out in the morning.
Friday we rented a car and decided to explore Tortola. Again, Mike chauffeured us and we headed into Road Town to see the sights. There was a cruise ship in town, and we laughed and enjoyed watching the ‘retiree’s ‘ wander about town. After a quick stop at the market, we headed along the ridge and had great views of the island and sea on both sides. We stopped for a late lunch at Cane Garden Bay and watched our good friends on Ocean Jedi come in and pick up a mooring. But they were with guests and so we ended up leaving before they headed to shore. The roads on Tortola are steep as well, and this was only a front wheel drive model, so there was one hairy moment where we couldn’t quite make the incline…Did I mention how glad I was that Mike was driving?! He maneuvered us around just great and soon we were up and over the hill, and again on he downhill slope. We were back at the boat by 3:30 and so decided to head for St. John. We arrived very late in the day, and moored between our friends Allegro and Dolce Vita…waved a hello and then swam and relaxed!
Today, we decided to head to shore and hike over to the Annaberg Plantation ruins. As we were heading out, we discovered Allegro off to do the same with their friends, and so combined forces and trouped over together. The ruins are very beautiful and interesting, and the views incredible.
We decided to have a happy hour tonight on Regenero with Allegro and Dolce Vita, and just as we arrived back at the boat Wind Shepherd, who is also here shows up! Yippee…the party keeps getting bigger!
Sunday, March 3, 2013
After heading into Cruz Bay this morning, we talked with Ocean Jedi, and met them over at Christmas Cove. They were diving with other friends, then snorkeled with us and Denise found us a very shy eel, hiding in the finger coral. I startled Mike when I was trying to get his attention, and thought he was gonna cream me with his quick reflexes! Had to spit out all the seawater I got in my snorkel while laughing!
Lynne spotted some Garden eels just swaying in the sand below the boat. Then we all had a progressive dinner. With Cocktails (Wookie Juice!) and Dinner aboard Regenero, then desert aboard Ocean Jedi, since Sweet Denise bought ice cream for us! We just love these guys!
Monday March 4th
Up and out to Crown Bay!
Well, starting the journey home, and so we head over to Crown Bay this morning. After lovely freshwater showers we jump the safari bus, for $1 and head into town to enjoy the market and town shopping and a late lunch. We found many treasures, and enjoyed the afternoon, til the cruise shippers went home and the shops started to close. Then, headed back to CBM to relax, and check the weather for travel tomorrow. Unfortunately it looks dicey, with 6-10 inches of snow forecasted for Chicago…ummm, well, Miami is a nice city to visit too!
Tuesday, March 5th
Sad travel Day…even the skys are crying
We wake today to a grey, rainy day that doesn’t really let up. We had planned to take the bus to town, and have a burger at Shipwreck, but turns out the weather keep us closer to home, and so we had a nice lunch at Tickles before waving good bye to Mike and Lynne as they headed for the airport. The weather reports in Chicago were still iffy, but their incoming flights still showed on time, so off they went to the airport, and off we went to the Laundromat. We waved as their flight took off at 5:30…and really hoped they would make Chicago tonight!