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BVI Trip Jan 8th to 20th, Second Wind
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Link to this postPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:17 pm    Post subject: Note BVI Trip Jan 8th to 20th, Second Wind

Trip Highlights Jan 8 to 20th, 2009

• After years of sailing with my ex, including trips to the Grenadines, the Florida Keys, the Bahamas, and six trips to the BVI’s, this was the first trip I captained my own vessel. My crew, Jim, has only been sailing since last year, but between the two of us, we had an awesome time, and did it ever feel great to know that I do have the knowledge, skills, experience – and now the confidence – to do it!
• Brent from Pro Valor was just awesome.
- I picked Brent mostly because I knew that with a smaller company I would get more personalized service, and being the first time I captained, I had a lot of questions, and needed some reassurances regarding weather and choices of anchorages, etc. I had also read good things about Brent. Brent answered every single question timely and with understanding and enthusiasm, and I really felt that he appreciated the fact that I was looking at the boat with so much detail, rather than just jumping aboard “Second Wind” and sailing off.
- We had some minor issues with the boat, and they were resolved with no questions or delays from Brent. And when our dinghy motor gave us some problems at Soper’s Hole, Brent was there within 45 minutes with a replacement motor and rigged us up lickity split. He even stopped on his way to CGB at CocoPlum’s to arrange our reservation for dinner that night, and stopped by on his way home to say hi! He even made the trek out to the Full Moon Party at Trellis to drop off some supplies and buy us a round of drinks!
- Anytime we needed to call Brent, he answered or got right back to us – he was more than generous with his time, considering what we paid for the charter (dirt cheap IMO!)…He was always willing to look up the weather for us when we were unable to get WIFI ourselves.
• The winds were higher than I would have liked for the first 5 days we were there, and because of that, we didn’t make it to Anegada. But there is always next time…
• The 5pm TTOL radio call happened only sporadically, unfortunately, because being captain, I was either setting up the boat, reviewing the charts or just limin back with a humongous drink after a day of sailing to remember!
- The only person who answered my TTOL call was Nick R at Leverick Bay, on his day off, no less! We agreed to meet him the next morning at the office, since in all the years I have emailed Nick and been to Leverick, we have never had the chance to meet…It was great to meet him finally, he was very nice and couldn’t do enough for us. As well, he affirmed my decision to not go to Anegada due to the weather, and that made me feel great that I didn’t put undue pressure on myself – after all, I am supposed to be having fun doing the Captain thing!
• We ran into some great TTOLers while on the trip, but missed more than we saw…
- We met up with I_AM_CDN at the Toronto Airport on the way down as well as at the Full Moon Party, saw SailorSteve and his crew at St. Thomas airport – sharing a cab and ferry ride to Tortola. We also went to dinner with them at CocoPlum’s and onto Quito’s afterwards. We met HoneyCat owner GGregory in Soper’s Hole.
- Unfortunately missed seeing Manpot & Tom Garvey at Quito’s by only a few minutes, never made it to Anegada to see Walker & Nancy, and missed seeing Hillsideview because we didn’t stay at CGB. I hear that HoosierDaddy was looking for us in North Sound, but didn’t hear his return call back to my TTOL call.
• We did an awesome run from North Sound to JVD, and we saw dolphins! It was a first for me; unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to get my camera before they were gone…They jumped several times beside the boat before they were gone, almost looking back at us as if to say, you’re going too slow!
• We were delayed in Philadelphia on the way down because Air Force One landed with “then” President Bush onboard – and no one could take off until they had cleared the area.
• The restaurant at Manuel Reef Marina was awesome, I really hope they continue to flourish – they seemed busy while we were there.
• Favourite new anchorages – for me anyway…
- Sandy Spit – Jim and I anchored there one morning, and ended up staying all day and night – was a great place, nice snorkelling, and we ended up doing a BBQ onshore – a first for me, and it won’t be my last – a lot of fun!
- Little Harbour, JVD – never have been there before, and we loved it – not wavy at all in the higher winds over by Harris’ Place and yet still breezy – quiet too, which was great!
- Saba Rock – I loved it there, although it was sad to see the dump trucks being ferried over to Oil Nut Bay to do construction on the new project there…
• Least Favourite Anchorage:
- I forgot how loud and rowdy The Bight is - fast boats, rowdy drinkers – I haven’t been there in a few years, and won’t miss going back…
• Most Fun:
- Getting the last ball at 12:30 pm at Trellis Bay for the Full Moon Party – and watching everyone else coming in trying to get one, including: One Moorings monohull that went aground just off the beach while we were doing Happy Hour at Da Loose Mongoose; The group who dropped a guy into a dinghy to race around the anchorage to look for a ball; And all the people who tried to outrace someone else to get to that last mooring ball, which turned out to be private anyway….
- Running into SailorSteve and his crew, and heading over to CocoPlums with them to dinner, and then some of us going on to Quitos – it was the only night I was still awake after 9:30!
- Doing the make your own drinks thing during a power outage at Peace & Love – that one is for Mitch, he was only one bay over!
- Running into Michael Beans on one of his days off at Great Harbour on Peter Island – he had just been in the recording studio the day before, working on his new album. It was great to see his boat sailing out of the anchorage – looks very good!
-- He asked me to post his website for his charity fundraising, anyone who has been following the links for Captain Rick & his Haiti run will know what I am talking about, but I can’t seem to make it work. He said it was, but that link doesn’t work…
- We finally got a chance to sail past Yacht Shots, here is the link:
Yacht Shots - Second Wind
• Island Surf and Sail
- They provided us with Trawling gear, on Saildoggie’s suggestion. They were there when we asked, and picked up when we asked, and were great to deal with! Would highly recommend them!
- Unfortunately, we didn’t get to fish much, with just two of us on the boat, and higher than usual winds, we decided much of the time to not tempt fate and land a big one!
- We didn’t get out to open ocean like we wanted to, but there will always be next time! Jim fished mostly around West end Tortola on the way to Norman, and also around Sandy Spit & Green Cay.
• We spend the last night in St. Thomas at the Galleon House, as usual. The place looked great. I love staying there, although Jim cursed the stairs the whole time!
• We really were surprised by how busy the anchorages were - most nights we either couldn't get a ball or got the last ball, and we were usually looking by 3:30 at the latest. I know that a lot of people are complaining about the lack of tourists, but you sure couldn't tell by the anchorages compared to last year, IMO.

Our trip ended up being:
Jan 8th - sleepaboard
Jan 9th - Buck Island
Jan 10th - FMP, Trellis Bay
Jan 11th - Saba Rock, NS JVD
Jan 12th - Leverick Bay, NS, JVD
Jan 13th - Little Harbour, JVD
Jan 14th - Sandy Spit, JVD
Jan 15th - Soper's Hole
Jan 16th - The Bight, Norman Island
Jan 17th - Marina Cay
Jan 18th - Great Harbour, Peter Island
Jan 19th - return to base, and onto St. Thomas - Galleon House
Jan 20th - home
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Link to this postPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 4:12 pm    

Thanks for sharing your trip report! Sounds like you had a great time. Reading your report definitely stoked up my DIF.

I really love Sandy Spit and Little Harbor, JVD. What did you end up cooking on the shore? I think that's the coolest idea, but I'm at a loss for what I would cook. Well, not so much what I would cook, but how I would cook with no camp cooking gear. I am not very fond of foil packet cooking...they never seem to turn out very good.

Reading lots of positive reviews of Brent's service. I may have to plan my next charter through him, although that's probably a few years off. Glad you had an excellent experience as well.
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Link to this postPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 10:08 am    

cpMike wrote:
What did you end up cooking on the shore? I think that's the coolest idea, but I'm at a loss for what I would cook. Well, not so much what I would cook, but how I would cook with no camp cooking gear. I am not very fond of foil packet cooking...they never seem to turn out very good.

We actually weren't quite sure whether it would work or not, so we erred on the side of caution and just cooked ham slices and pineapple - the ham was already cooked, so it didn't matter how hot the fire got.

We dug a hole in the sand out of the wind, put in the charcoal, got it going, and then placed a bunch of rocks around the hole, and placed our BBQ grill on top of that. When the charcoal was embers, we threw on the ham. It worked really well.

We would definitely do it again. We had an extra cooler, so we threw everything in it to bring ashore, and took everything but the embers back again. When we were done with the fire, we just filled it in again with sand to put it out.
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