Monday, 13 June 2016

Our season is winding down.

As I write this post we are tied up at the Le Phare Bleu Marina in Grenada getting the boat ready for haul out.  It's a lot of work, day after hot sweaty day. There is so much to clean out and wipe down, all with the aim of trying to prevent mould and mildew growth while she is left on " the hard".

  My last post had us enjoying Dominica, which we did for 6 days. Not nearly long enough and we will certainly be going back for more next season. We left there on May 20th and after a full 15 hour sail arrived in Rodney bay, St.Lucia. We spent several days in the marina, hooked up to shore power so that Ian could ( technical alert!) equalize the boat batteries. I won't even try to explain what that entails (google it) but with it successfully accomplished we moved on down the coast to Marigot Bay. There is a very nice resort there, Capella Resort, and we had been told by friends that if we stayed on one of their mooring balls we would have use of the resort and most importantly their fresh water pool!

Ahh, that feels good.

   While in Marigot Bay we did the walk up to the Marigot Ridge. My goodness. The trail goes straight up, no switchbacks here. The view at the top was well worth it.

Straight up.

The rope was a huge help.

Looking down on Marigot Bay 

Looking out to sea from inside Marigot Bay

  Our next stop was Bequia, one of the Islands that make up St. Vincent and the Grenadines. I love Bequia. On this visit we were finally able to complete the Peggy's Rock hike, after our aborted attempt last year with Jo and Cliff.

A gentle start to the walk.

Then it got steeper.

And rockier.

The view was beautiful at the top.

Looking down on Admirality Bay, Bequia from Peggy's Rock.

The road back to town. 

Homes downtown in Port Elizabeth.
Restaurant on the waterfront pathway. 

Good snorkelling off Tony Gibbons beach.

Love these little spiral sea anemones (?)  

  On our first day of snorkelling here we saw juvenile lobsters, a beautiful eel and to top it off, an octopus. When the octopus became aware of us it changed colour and its camouflage was amazingly good. When I swam down close to it, it puffed itself up to twice its size and turned white with blue "eyes", quite intimidating looking, trying to scare me off. Of course, I didn't have the camera with me that day, the pictures would have been fantastic.

The view on our walk to...........

The Old Hegg Turtle Sanctuary. A 2 year old Hawksbill.

    Our next stop was the Tobago Cays. These are a group of small, uninhabited Islands which are protected from the sea by the surrounding  Horseshoe Reef. They are within easy reach of both Canouan and Mayreau Islands.

    We had been unsure if we would stop by this year. Unfortunately a few days earlier there had been a boarding of a sailboat by armed local men. Money and valuables were demanded and violence was used, a horrible experience for the boaters involved. Apparently the perpetrators were later caught. We decided to go; you can't live your life in fear of what might happen; but if, on arrival we had  found ourselves to be the only boat there, I think perhaps we would have enjoyed a swim and snorkel and then moved on for the night. Happily for us though we met up with two other Antares boats and had a fun visit with Peter and Sally (s/v Milly) and Warren and Annie (s/v Exit Strategy). A delicious BBQ dinner was delivered to the boat by the local boat boys who do all the cooking on shore.

S/V Zooropa, S/V Milly and S/V Exit Strategy.

     Our next stop was Clifton Harbour, Union Island. A quick walk to the small local airport and we were checked out of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Peter and Sally had followed us here so the four of us did a quick walk up to Fort Hill to take in the beautiful views.

At the dock.

A short walk up hill rewards you with this view.

With Peter and Sally (s/v Milly). The Tobago Cays in the background.

      We finished the day with a quick sail over to Carriacou Island which is part of Grenada. All of these Islands, from Tobago Cays to Union to Carriacou and then Grenada are within sight of each other and mostly run North/South which makes for easy and quick sailing trips. We stayed just two nights in Carriacou and then continued on down to Grenada.

    We have our haul out date booked and our season is winding down. Enough sun, fun and beach time, the emphasis now is on cleaning and preparing to leave the boat. We are both looking forward to a land break.