BVI -Belle Christine Ships Log
Managed to make it from St Thomas to the British Virgin Island, Tortola. We got to Maria’s By The Sea and met our crew. We went over to the Moorings to take possession of the 50 ft. fun boat…. Then we had to run over to the market for provisioning for the trip. Got our supplies back to the boat and put away. It was suggested that maybe we should put out to sea now, instead of waiting till morning. Well we went to get our free drink and then found it was just a punch. It took a dollar to make it a Rum punch.
So we got back to the boat and decided to cast off the lines and Mike started the engine and off we went. We cleared the docks and then headed for the open water. We headed into the wind and got the main sail up and the jib and we were sailing. There was a light breeze and we were able to make up to 5-6 knots for the start of our trip. We did not go too far, we got to Cooper Island and found a spot to anchor for the night.
Mike make some pain killers and they ladies got some sandwich stuff out for dinner….
Nice weather and cool breeze….
Up not too early for our first morning at Cooper Island. Hardly a breath of wind anyway. We had breakfast and looked at the charts and decided to motor to the Dogs for some snorkeling. We a ball to hook too and some of us swam a bit and enjoyed to clear blue water. Then we had lunch and found that the wind was starting to kick up.
We cast off the ball and were able to get sails up and catch the wind, sailing again. We enjoyed the afternoon of tacking and jibing. Then headed thru a narrow channel and to the Bitter End Yacht Club.
We looked around and managed to find a ball to hook to. We sent scouts out to check if the natives were friendly or not… We found they were and had showers and supplies and a great place for dinner. We then got back on boat to find that Chris had left his iPad under the chair at bar. So he went back over and was lucky and found it.
We got to see a very unusual sailing ship called the Maltese Falcon. It had a huge slide for people to play over the side. They have three almost 200ft masts that revolve. Very cool boat.
We got up and some of the crew decided to take advantage of the showers at the Bitter End and a few supplies. So we got a late start to head up to Anegada. We are on the way, sails up and course set for us to find our destination that we could not see. We got up to 7.5 knots and passed a cat on the way.
We were watching some clouds found a water spout come down from the clouds but it did not touch the water. Very cool to watch.
Anegada is only 20ft high so we could not see it for a couple hours. But finally, Land ho…. It was a very shallow channel to get in and then we did not find any balls to latch on to. So we found a place a dropped our anchor.
We had entertainment show up by the boat. Berry was advertising about his dinner place and even sang us a song. Left us a menu and we found it interesting and decided we would take him up on it.
We all went ashore to go to the beach on the other side of the island. We had a drink and stayed on the beach for an hour or so. Then back to the dingy dock. We found Berry was cleaning lobsters. It was making Sandy think maybe she did not want lobster for dinner. Most the crew went back to boat and Chris and I explored a little more of the island.
We talked with Pam, one of the owners of the diner at end of island. She told us how she had met her husband there and then returned and got married. They run the inn and she bakes pastries and they have been there since 1977. When the storms took out their dock a couple years ago, the government gave them a kit to rebuild the lost dock. Without a dingy dock they would have no business.
Everyone came back on shore for dinner and we had Berry serving us and taking care of anything we needed. He was a one man show. The next morning he was even out picking up our trash.
It was still raining when we got up and we tried to decide what we could do. We decided to take advantage of a small break in the rain to set sail and head down to Monkey Point. We had strong winds and some rain on the way. Finally the clouds broke and we made it around Monkey Point. No room to get a ball of anchor so we went up to a beach near to anchor for lunch.
Some went ashore and found a resort there and partly a private beach.
After our nap we sailed back around Monkey Point and then into a small channel to get into Marina Cay. We did not find a ball to start with but then someone in a dingy told us that the cat was leaving soon so we circled like a buzzard waiting for them to leave the ball. We got secured and then went ashore to make reservations for dinner and get ice.
We had a nice dinner and watched the view for the evening. Such a great place to spend time.
It rained most the night and still in the morning as we got up. We decided that we would motor to West End for the morning. We had very high winds and waves. It was hard to hold the heading so we decided it was time to let Siri drive again. She did a great job keeping our heading and we stayed under the cover and watched for traffic since Siri had not way of knowing if there were other boats.
We had big rollers that were tossing everyone and the boat. Really a rough crossing but fun in a way. Hang out and watch for the next one. At first they rollers were coming from the side and we went on a run down the north side of Tortola. Then later we got to turn south and the land bent around. Then they rollers were behind us. The dingy kept surfing on them and then catching up with us. Then it got jerked back by the rope when we pulled ahead again.
Well we finally ran out of the rain and clouds as we were getting to the point that we had to go around to get to West End. I took us off the auto pilot, Siri. I took over and drove thru the channel and then around into West End. We had to look hard but finally found a ball on the very front of the West End mooring area.
West End was nice and we found some supplies. Then later in evening had a good dinner. Then we got back to the boat had some more painkillers and enjoyed stories and snacks.
Quiet night on the ball at West End. We woke up late and some went to shower. So we got a late start for the day. We got out of the harbor and then headed to Jost for sailing. We sailed up to the Little Jost and then past the small islands to continue sailing for another hour or so. Then back to the small islands. We dropped the hook and enjoyed our late lunch. We went on shore the smallest island and found sand sculptures that someone had created. See pictures…;-))
When we pushed the dingy off the beach and pulled on starter cord, the motor started but the rope broke. Not a good thing. When we got to boat we worked on it and managed to set it so we could pull one more time. It looks like we will have to reset the rope every time we run it.
We then started sailing again. We all took turns at the helm and enjoyed a great afternoon of sailing. We then went into the Great Bay on Jost to go into dinner at Foxy’s.
We go into Foxy’s for dinner and after tying up the dingy we take the time to reset the rope on the motor. Then we had a great BBQ buffet at Foxy’s. But then it started to rain… I mean RAIN!!!!!
We moved from the table we had that was getting wet to some closer into the middle of the club to stay dry. We wondered how Marilyn was doing since she had opted out of dinner to stay on the boat.
It rained so hard that power went out for a short time and the satellite for the TV went out two or three times. We just chatted with people and the music kept playing and everyone was having fun.
Finally the rain stops and we go to the dingy and it had 3-4 inches of water in it. So Mike made the pull on motor and it ran. He took dingy out for a spin to empty the water. Then came back and managed to keep motor running until we were all back on the boat. Marilyn survived but was worried about things.
We all got up early today so that we could have the morning to sail back to the Moorings base. We took off under sail, from the anchor and had a great morning sailing. We all took turns on the helm and tacking and watching for other traffic. The weather was great, the water was blue and the wind about 16-18 knots and we were able to make 7-8 knots as we went up the south side of Tortola.
We arrived at the Moorings about 1130 and turned in the boat. Chris, Chesly and I looked at some of the other boats and catamarans to see what they were like. We are all thinking about when we are going to make our next trip.
Of course we felt our adventures were over for this trip… Hahaha…
We had lunch at Maria’s By The Sea and had not checked on the ferry schedule for the day…. So about 3:15 we head over for the trip back to St Thomas. We get to ferry dock and are told there are no more ferries for the day. The last fast ferry was cancelled. The only way off the island was the ferry at 4pm at the West End, 20 miles away. We jump in a Taxi at 3:35 and head out to West End. I do not think that we are going to make it. I guess the reason you do not see speed limits here is that they have speed bumps every mile or so. So it was only a semi fast trip.
We got there and the captain was out looking and watching for us. Of course it turns out it is not the ferry that we had a ticket for. So we bought another ticket. And paid a $5 departure tax??? Well at least we got on and back to St Thomas…. But opps, this is not where we need to be…. They drop us on the east side of island at Red Hook. So we take the bus across the island. Then it turns out the bus only goes by the road to our hotel, not to the hotel. So we walk the last mile.
Well we got to our room and after a good shower and great dinner, we felt like life was good.
Of course the story does not end there. Chris is up early and out to his 8 something flight. I had steak and eggs for breakfast, wow what a big steak!! Then I had Al the taxi driver at the hotel to take me to Black Beards Castle…. Of course we get there and they are closed. Only open Mon, Tue and Wed this time of year. So back to hotel and a $16 lesson in call to check first.
So I hung out at hotel and enjoyed the sights. Watched them using a Fly Board attached to a jet ski and them flying high in the sky. Lots of fun… Then about 2pm I got Al to take me to the airport and I waited for my flight home.
Footnote – I managed to not get my iPhone wet, not lose my glasses, not get a rope burn on sails, not get my finger caught in the hatch, not get sunburned but when I was washing my clothes back home I washed my wallet!!!!