Pulling up the anchor to leave Prickly Bay we were amazed at how much weed had grown on the chain after such a short stay. We left the chain on deck rather than stow it in the anchor locker so we could clean it..We made a short hop up to Dragon Bay on the west coast of Grenada and had time here for a spot of snorkelling before our sundowners.
First light next day we were underway, up the coast then across past Kick ‘em Jenny and Diamond rock to Tyrrel Bay Carriacou. Ashore later we had a very nice fish dinner in the Slipway, fresh Tuna for me and Mahi Mahi for Ged. A visit to the mangrove lagoon then a walk to and along Paradise beach finishing with drinking rum with the locals at Banana Joe’s, a very laid back character.
Moving on we moored off Sandy island, just a strip of coral and sand with a few palm trees. It was very windy so the snorkelling not so good as it could have been. On to Hillsborough, a bus over to Windward to look at the boat building and a walk towards the North of the island.
Next stop was Petite Martinique a more laid back island would I think be hard to find in the Caribbean. No other yachts here, no tourists, no whities.
On to Union island, here we bought fresh tuna steaks from a fisherman delicious they were and walked up Fort hill for the views towards our next objective the uninhabited Tobago Cays. Careful navigation is needed to visit these surrounded as they are by reefs but they are a fabulous place to visit. We swam, saw iguanas ashore and treated ourselves to barbecued lobster.
Still strong winds for our passage to Bequia, 25 to 30 knots with a lively sea. Leeway, wind, waves, current all pushing us westward so it was hard work to gain the easting we needed.
We discovered the hard way that the holding in Admiralty bay was not great, the bottom being sand & rubble when we were awoken at 3.30 by the anchor alarm that we were dragging. Not much fun that time in the morning re-anchoring. Later for peace of mind we took a mooring buoy.
Christmas day was spent here, lunch on the terrace of a restaurant overlooking the bay followed by a walk along the beach, swimming and rounded of with rum punch at a Rasta spot.
Another rough but thankfully short passage took us to St Vincent. In the lee of the island all much calmer and we arrived at Cumberland Bay to anchor with Joseph the rastaman taking a stern line ashore tied to a tree on the beach.
A walk ashore confirmed the friendliness of the locals with greetings and chats . One love man.
We both wanted to stay longer here in St Vincent but Ged’s plane from Martinique would not wait.
Cleared out from Chateaubelair further up the coast, a desperately poor place this but the locals super friendly and helpful.
By the time we arrived in St Lucia we were very salty from spray and motoring the last miles into Soufriere was a race against the dark. Sometimes you can be thankful that there are boat boys and they helped us to a vacant mooring buoy, anchoring is not allowed here as it is a Marine park. One good thing about this passage was the catching of a small tuna by our trolled line, it provided a tasty eve meal.
A pleasant sail on flat water took us to Rodney Bay. Its the sort of place I normally avoid, big marina with condominiums, holiday resorts etc. but located on the North of the island an ideal jumping of spot for crossing to Martinique.
Martinique is north from St Lucia so at least we did not have to fight to make easting. Calmer seas and a beam wind we flew along surprising both of us by our speed and the ease of it. So we arrived by midday to anchor in Grande Anse d’Arlet. Jean Mitchell who I had first meet in Northern Spain over a year ago was here and spotting Sea Bear rowed over to invite us for t punch later. There are lots of turtles here so Ged eventually got to swim with a turtle when snorkelling.
We went to a Creole restaurant on the beach before the short hop to Fort de France. Ashore a lot going on, music, bands, loads of people. We had to keep checking we were not a day out and it wasn’t New Years eve already. Back on the boat there seemed more boats at anchor and lots of motorboats arriving in the dark, it was a bit chaotic but a boat patrolling in front of us stopped boats passing beyond us. The reason was a grand firework display from the fort and on our boat we had front row seats as it were. Told Ged it was arranged specially for a grand send off for him.
In morning it was time for Ged to catch the bus to the airport to fly home