U.S. Virgin Islands
Northside

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19 travelers at this place
  • Day56

    St Thomas, USVI

    December 12, 2016 on the U.S. Virgin Islands ⋅ 🌙 26 °C

    Wind. Blustery breeze.

    Hunkering down under the aeroplanes in the flattest, most protected water available. Coincidently a very nice spot! We're playing it safe until with winds drop back down below 20kts, at least for now.

    We've picked up the princess, she's alive and buzzing at the warm weather and clear blue water. To top it off, our anchorage happened to be host to numerous families of turtles, who popped up all over the bay, and forced us into countless impulsive swims. We also got the windsurfer up and running over these two days. Believe it or not, everyone our boat can windsurf - how's that??!

    It was great to be waiting on the weather. In a nice location we just had time to burn. Everyone set their own clocks and did their activities as they pleased. Not that we were ever on a hectic schedule, but I'm sure you know what I mean.

    I'm going to take the liberty here to offer a little insight to the weather. Jump to the two paragraphs if you don't like weather. So I bet you're thinking we get sun all day and moon all night, right? Wrong. We're riddled with showers, all the time. Although the sun is shining for most of the day, it doesn't take good eyes to spot a darkening cloud on the horizon. Contrary to weather at home, these clouds arrive quickly and leave quickly, torrenting with rain. Squalls would be the best way to describe them, as the reliably bring wind, lot's of wind, and heavy downpours. Often, in less than a minute, they're gone. With five or six of these per day or per night, it's infuriating. Hatches open, washing out; hatches closed, washing in. And by washing I mean electronics. Close the hatches and the bot roasts. First world problems, I know.

    We're also sitting in the trades, so we reliably get easterly wind and swell. It makes for easy route planning. It also makes for easy guidebook writing, as authors need only provide guidance for one wind direction. And in the charting world, a western anchorage is a safe bet. With regard to the temperature. I've seen only 26 and 27 degrees since we got here. More consistency than Fraser's presence in class during his study in Otago (never).

    Yesterday we motored up to Great St James Island to get a better angle to attack St Croix in an Easterly breeze. During his evening anchor dive, Scott meandered over to a nearby rocky outcrop. With Felicity and I in tow, we stumbled across a massive crayfish in around 1m of water. The rest is history. Scott's appetite for hunting cray is enormous. No crack goes unsearched and no craycray goes unattacked (size pending of course). After wrestling this sucker out of it's (particularly small) hole, we realised that there was no other way back to the boat than swim. Furthermore, the shallow water was surging with the swell, and sea urchins littered the alcove. With both hands tied up with said fish, swimming was tough. Witnessing Scott get smashed on rocks, urchins and pricked by a fiesty crustacean was undoubtedly the highlight of my day. Felicity took her sweet time getting the dinghy as Scott's shallow injuries mounted. After an eternity she (the cray) was safe in the yacht and fed us four for dinner...with leftovers. A fantastic end to an otherwise uneventful day.

    As a little aside, who's reading my blog?? I literally have no idea who's reading this. A teacher, some time during my numerous years of education, told me I should tailor my words to my audience. Send us a like or a comment if you're reading and let me know what you want to read more about!!
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    John Ellis

    Yo ho ho. Sounds like no fun at all. Did you make it down to the "dodgy" Bomba's Shack on Tortola? Legendary in it's day - does it still exist? Anchoring hint in a tight place - you probably don't want to stick an anchor fore and aft as it sucks when the wind changes, but if you stick 2 anchors out in a Y, it will cut down your swing a bit. And then you can have a really good cluster when you hoist anchors again and say why did I listen to that salty old fart. Take care of little sis when she comes and have a fab Caribbean Christmas

    12/13/16Reply
    Richard Ellis

    No we never made it there, don't know if it exists...will look into that! Thanks for the tips, if i find a second anchor I'll be sure to give it a go! Merry Christmas to you and the fam too

    12/14/16Reply
    Jools Peters

    Good job👍 keep it up Rich!

    12/19/16Reply
     
  • Day2

    A day in St. Thomas (Day 2)

    April 8, 2016 on the U.S. Virgin Islands ⋅ ☀️ 28 °C

    A peaceful evening and a smooth ride brings us to St. Thomas.

    We toured the best of St. Thomas with stops at the top of the island that provided beautiful views of Charlotte Amalie and Meagan's Bay.

    At Mountain Top (1547' elevation) a world famous banana daiquiri and no worries!

    A stop at the Great House and a Run Punch and the day keeps getting better.

    Next stop downtown for a little shopping then back to the ship.
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  • Day172

    St. Thomas to St. John USVI

    March 10, 2016 on the U.S. Virgin Islands ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

    We “quickly” sailed downwind to St. Thomas to pick up Corey and Jamie in the large harbor of Charlotte Amalie.
    It’s a large flat sandy harbor so we picked any old spot away from the ferries only to find that seaplanes had their own unofficial runway at our stern, which we found to be entertaining. Their plane landed right as we anchored so we jetted straight to the airport…. And just in time I might add…. As we bumped into good ole Corey & Jamie at the airport (who had been giddily sipping free rum samples), they immediately steered us over to a long line for car rentals…. Asking us if we recognized anyone… and by George …of all the gin joints… our college friend Sarah whom, we both met through NEUs outdoor club NUHOC, was standing there! We had traveled thousands of miles away from home over the course of 6 months and, still, we serendipitously bumped into friends from home. Everyone was engulfed in hugs and disbelief asking the same dumbfounded question “Wow, what-the, when, how are you?!?!?!”Because Mike & I were so organized our first order of business was to go grocery shopping in St. Thomas. Fun! Our first night we ate out in town, arriving just in time for happy hour. With beer and cocktails in hand, we made a game plan for the next 5 days – Circumnavigate ST. JOHN! Before leaving we meandered the town of Charlotte Amalie, known for its jewelry district. I found the Dutch influence in architecture to be of far greater interest; the buildings were made-up of old weathered stone walls with thick heavy wooden doorways and fat metal latches beautifully fashioned from a time period I can only imagine.

    St. John, day 1: We beat into the wind (‘beat’ is sailing jargon for bashing the bow of your sailboat into or close to the wind – aka not fun sailing) to St. John and hooked onto a National Park mooring. We snorkeled the area, spotting several stingrays and a turtle and the next morning we ran the dinghy onto shore in Reef Bay.
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  • Day5

    St. Thomas

    November 15, 2018 on the U.S. Virgin Islands ⋅ ☁️ 28 °C

    Heute sind wir in St. Thomas angekommen. Wir sind direkt weiter zu Megan’s Bay aufgebrochen und haben ein paar schöne Stunden am Strand verbracht. Auch wenn es recht bewölkt ist, ist es ziemlich warm.

  • Day8

    St Thomas, Oh goody, US immigration.

    November 11, 2014 on the U.S. Virgin Islands ⋅ ⛅ 29 °C

    We've got the usual US immigration farce at St Thomas this morning.
    The line for non US passengers is the full length of the Royal Promenade, it's now 9.30am and it's been like that since 7am.
    Sheila and I have decided to leave going right until the last minute, because I'm definitely not standing in that bloody line.
    The real bad thing is that we'll have to do it all over again in Ft Lauderdale, all because our last stop is in Coco Cay which is British.
    Why can't they work these stops out better?
    If our last stop was a US port we wouldn't have to do all this crap again.
    But no that would be to simple for RCCL.
    We've decided that this will be our last transatlantic for a good while, as we're sick of the US immigration, and also the long haul flights back home.
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  • Day9

    US immigration, and it's SHITE attitude

    November 12, 2014 on the U.S. Virgin Islands ⋅ ⛅ 28 °C

    Well the US immigration met all my low expectations.
    Sheila and I approached the customs officer, and with a smile I said good morning and handed her my documents.
    I then stood back and casually pushed my hands in to my shorts pockets.
    The cheeky cow of an immigration officer did no more than glare at me, and in a very condescending voice said to me "take your hands out of your pockets " I said "what?
    Really? "
    She said yes take your hands out of your pockets.
    Well I lost it and said to Sheila "I'm 64 years of age and being spoken to like a child.
    I then pushed my hands back in to my pockets, Fuming.
    She then said it's a security issue and that she didn't know where I'd been before I came to immigration.
    I said "well take a wild guess where I've been as we'd been on a cruise ship for the last 12 days".
    Anyway that was about it she stamped my passport and off we went.
    It just pisses me off the attitude of these people, give them a uniform and a bit of power and it goes to their head.
    I'm afraid as much as I love the USA I can't be doing with their over the top, and paranoid immigration service.
    It's things like this that make you realize why the USA is so hated around the world.
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  • Day171

    St. Thomas, Virgin Islands

    February 17, 2018 on the U.S. Virgin Islands ⋅ ⛅ 25 °C

    Had an emergency medical disembarkation today. It was suppose to be a sea day but a passenger had a medical emergency and needed a hospital. So at 4am the ship changed course and went full speed towards St Thomas. We were there for a few hour, anchored offshore well they were disembarking the passenger using the tenders. We were unable to dock because there was no space. There was a Disney ship and a Holland America ship there already.

    For weddings onboard the ship, for them to be legal we have to be out in international waters. Which is far from land. Today was suppose to be a busy day with weddings and they all had to be pushed. It was an interesting day. But the passenger is now getting the proper care he needs.
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