Rodney Bay St Lucia
Mor Toad / Moy Toad
David and Jocelyn Fawcett
Sun 8 Feb 2015 19:26
We set off from Marigot Bay in weather we can only describe as 'dricht'. Everything very wet and soggy as it has rained a lot since yesterday lunchtime. We also got pretty wet on the journey here (less than a couple of hours motoring) and do I dare say it a little chilly! However by lunchtime today it had cleared we are now on a pontoon in Rodney Bay (this is where the ARC boats finished in December) however we have never been on a pontoon with so much space around us right at the end of the finger - did they know we had two small children on board? The sun is now shining it's hot and we and our washing towels etc should dry out.
We are booked in here for 3 nights. Hopefully tomorrow it will be good news in that the water maker parts have arrived from the UK and that can be fixed. There is obviously still some exploring to do locally too.
We had 5 nights in Marigot Bay spent a day on the local beach (famous as apparently the first lDr Doolittle was filmed in the 60's) and generally chilling. We spent one day on public buses exploring Castries the nearby town port where all the cruise ships go. Here there was a very good market and interesting Roman Catholic Church with painted wooden ceiling, and walls but little else of note . We then caught the bus to Souffriere - an attractive village on the coast with coloured wooden houses further south near the Pitons. On the third day after a lot of investigation into how we could get there and after much negotiation into the cost we took a taxi at 7.30am from the marina to Souffriere again and beyond to Gros Piton(2600') which we intended to climb. We arrived by 9 it's a pretty twisty road and Merryn was nearly sick but we made it and after paying the park entrance we were allocated a guide. They were obviously not that happy that we were intending to walk two children up there but we had it planned that Alex was to carry Sam in the sling on her back and we would encourage Merryn to walk as much as possible and if need be she would also be carried in a make shift sling on Dan's back. We made it up - pretty hot and sweaty not an easy climb very bouldery through forest and quite steep in parts. The guides were very negative not at all encouraging (they did not get a tip at the end) but Merryn climbed the whole way. We did it in 2 hrs 10 minutes (had been told average time 2 hrs) actual climb 2019' so we did alright and all the other climbers were amazed at Merryn's efforts as were we. We didn't spend much time on top and sadly the guides wouldn't show us the view with the other Piton as they said it was too slippery so the view was not that spectacular looking south to St Vincent. It was also quite cloudy and it had indeed drizzled on the way up making the stones quite slippery in places. Coming down Merryn was carried part of the way - wish I could have been too. Well deserved beers at the bottom and a fantastic achievement for 3 generations.
Afterwards we went to the volcano park and bathed in black water smelling of sulphur which was very hot and scrubbed ourselves with white and black ? Soap all a bit of fun and certainly helped the aching muscles.
6 pretty tired people that night and our muscles still hurting 2 days later. David and I went to the RainForest Hideaway in Marigot Bay for dinner that night - one of the best meals we've had in The Caribbean run by an English family. It is right in the forest on the waters edge only accessible by water taxi and had a lovely atmosphere. Sadly it was ta Jazz evening.
Yesterday we had a relaxing day well nearly - the big and little children played on the beach and we did another short walk which was a bit crazy as it was very steep and in parts had ropes which was up behind the Rainforest Hideaway but a good ridge walk with views down into Marigot Bay and at the end you could just see Martinique in the distance. So worth it. But we didn't do a lot yesterday afternoon and we had a lovely family meal in a local restaurant in the marina which had boats moored right up to the bar. Great lobster again for us and fish and chips for the others.
The advantage of the marina apart from the showers, water and electricity was we could use the pool in the hotel which kept the children amused and David and I had a nice breakfast in the hotel two morning taking Merryn one morning as a treat. However we were by far the smallest boat on the pontoon - there are some pretty big motor boats as well as yachts likewise with some of the houses around the area too. The whole lagoon is surrounded by Mangrove and we did see one turtle and plenty of fish. Dan enjoyed rowing the dinghy around too to get to the beach.
What I should mention is that just before we left Bequia David and I were delighted to meet up with Mike and Sarah Conlin friends from St Mawes for dinner in Jack's Bar. Again another wet evening but they had just arrived in Bequia to start 5 days holiday after being in Barbados. Unbelievable that in less than a month of being out here we have met up with two lots of friends which certainly wasn't planned before we left. Small world and yesterday David bumped into a yachtsman from Scotland who knows Mark or rather his father of Freshwater Boatyard.
So next blog will be in a few days hopefully from Martinique but this will very much depend on what happens re the water maker parts.