North to Dominica - Wind and weather variable - Good!

Martin and Elizabeth Bevan
Thu 10 Mar 2011 18:00

Position           15:34.97N 61:27.97W

Date                1800 – 10 March 2011


We had to wait until 0900 for the Tourist Information Office in St Pierre to open as that is where the Customs computer terminal is housed.  Posting a birthday card was also a challenge as the Post Office resembled Coggeshall Post Office on pension day with a queue out of the door.  The stamp machine would have been a short cut, it did everything except issue stamps, including taking my money,  I got my own back by indulging in French Queuing, going straight to the front of the queue and pushing in.  Is this similar to French Kissing?  Nobody seemed to object, very strange and definitely part of the culture that we Brits do not understand.


All of this meant that by the time we up anchored it was 1000 and with 55 miles to go we had to crack on.  For the first hour the visibility was excellent.  To the south we could clearly see Mount Grand Magazin on St Lucia 60nm away and as soon as we cleared the headland a wonderful cloud shrouded view of the south of Dominica 30nm to the north.



Two hours later the wind had risen to 25kts on the nose, visibility was down to less that 2nm and it was lashing down with rain.  By the time that we came abeam the south of Dominica the rain gradually eased and with it the visibility lifted and wind dropped entirely away.  The engine running was good for the batteries!


We made Prince Rupert Bay and the town of Portsmouth at 1800 with enough time to find a good anchorage in 10m and enough swinging room which was just as well as overnight we managed every direction, swinging by stages through 360 degrees.  Result however – we had a non-rolly night.


Culinary notes – chicken stir fry.