Nevis & St Kitts
We moved out of Jolly Harbour marina on 5th January and anchored outside, so that we were ready for a reasonably early start on Tuesday 6th. We decided to miss out on Monserrat and head straight for Nevis. Lots of people talked in their blogs about Monserrat history, but none of them said that you must go there and there had been a small eruption not long ago and there were reports of quite a lot of ash on boats etc.
We had a really good sail across to Nevis although it was quite rolly with fairly big seas. It felt like we were back in the Atlantic again. We arrived at Charlestown and picked up a mooring off Phinney’s beach. It was amazing to go somewhere with about 60 moorings, most of which were unoccupied. The moorings looked pretty substantial and in very good condition, so we felt pretty secure and the beach was fairly sheltered from the wind and swell. We stayed there 3 nights and did a bit of exploring of Charlestown, had lunch at the iconic Sunshine Beach Bar etc.
On the quayside on Nevis with St Kitts in the background.
One of the nice traditional buildings in Charlestown.
Susan trying out the hot volcanic springs just outside Charlestown. The water is 110deg F.
The Sunshine Beach Bar.
The colourful ‘interior’ of the Sunshine bar.
On Friday we sailed up to St Kitts, only 10 miles, but we just stuck up a headsail and gently sailed round the bottom of St Kitts to Zante Marina in Basseterre. Like a number of other boats we had a weather forecast for Sunday and Monday with pretty high winds and big seas so we planned to stay in the Marina until the heavy weather passed. The marina is fairly rustic and most of the facilities could do with some maintenance, however it has a fairly new breakwater and is a fairly sheltered harbour.
The small Zante harbour.
Our typical view from the marina with 2 huge cruise ships.
We got out the bikes and went for a cycle run up St Kitts, however we found that the drivers were pretty inconsiderate and passed at speed very close to us, making it a bit scary.
The town is really geared up for the cruise ships and there are usually 2 very large ships in each day. The rest of the town is not as upmarket as we expected from the guides and on Friday and Saturday it was very noisy with blaring music, which we were told went on until 4.0am. We, as usual, put on our fans in the bedroom and managed to pretty much sleep through the noise. The past 2 days have seen a whole series of heavy showers as well as pretty strong winds, although not quite as bad as forecast.
We have used the time to do a bit of maintenance, the main problem was that our starboard electric winches had stopped working. After much testing I found that the connection on one of our circuit breakers was actually glowing when the winch was running – it takes 60-70 amps. Once I had replaced the nut and washers the system started working again, although I will replace the circuit breaker when we get to St Maarten.
We plan to leave tomorrow (Wednesday) to go up to St Eustatius and then to St Maarten on Thursday.
We are still struggling with our internet access and will need to buy some new equipment when we can find a decent IT shop, hopefully in St Maarten. Our Canadian neighbours are Skyping away using the Digicel phone system, while we are struggling to get any access using the same system. There are always challenges.