Well, I was right to be concerned about the northern tip of St Vincent as we battled 20 foot waves for well over an hour. Beyzano coped amazingly, as if it was nothing to her but I certainly did my usual involuntary shriek when the port deck was actually sailing IN the water. It wasn’t just the waves crashing over the boat – we were in the sea!!
Anyway, we left Bequia at dawn and shot across to the southern tip of St Vincent at about 9 knots. At one point there was a charter boat motoring straight for us and we couldn’t see anyone on the helm, so a quick radio call woke him up!
Behind the island the wind varied from 4 knots to 16 but then increased just before the northern tip to 32. At one point we rose up on a huge wave, only to find another coming straight at us as we dropped off the first. The second broke right over us as we went through, rather than at on top of it! You need to be ready and reefed early as once you get into those huge seas, reefing becomes much more testing. The winds then dropped to a Force 5 but the waves continued to be huge for some time afterwards. We were creaming along at 10 knots and broke our previous record, now having done the trip in 10 hours rather than the usual 15, meaning we got into Rodney Bay in the daylight and finally, after 2 attempts, found a reasonable spot to anchor.
We have now cleared in using the new Seaclear online system, which is a great improvement as you have a separate queue! Overtime cost 2.50 GBP plus our normal fee of 10 GBP. The office is open 8-12 and 1.30-4.30 every day except Friday when it opens until 6pm. So all is well, we are in Cafe Ole again and meeting up with friends tonight at the Jambe de Bois. Our dinghy floor is being repaired, Sparkle will collect the laundry later and we will do a big food shop for our children’s forthcoming visits. Good to be back in St Lucia 🙂
Thursday and Friday look like another good weather window, so we can head up to Martinique and on to Dominica for overnight stops on our way to Antigua. We’ll get there Kym!