Nevis to Montserrat

Imagine Of Falmouth Online Log
Jon Constantine
Fri 16 May 2008 17:15

Nevis to Montserrat.


We do seem to be getting up very early these days.  The anchor was up and we were off at 07.50 for the 40 or so miles to the bay off Montserrat where we planned to stop for the night.  Not much wind so we motor-sailed yet again.  Put the fishing line out to see if we could catch a tuna or a dorada for our dinner.  Unfortunately, we managed to get it hooked on one of the many fishing buoys we were busily dodging.  We passed this one just a bit too closely and the cross current swept the lure straight onto it.  We did a 360 degree turn and circled the pot and it came off without a problem.  Later in the day I got a definite fish on the line but lost it before I could reel it in.  By lunchtime there was enough wind to switch off the engine and a sail the course for Montserrat – hooray!



               Making good progress towards Montserrat                                                               Anchored at Little Bay


Montserrat is an island with a problem – a big one.  A live volcano called Gallway’s Soufriere in the South last erupted in 1995 covering most of the southern part of the island in volcanic ash and lava with outflows and discharges continuing to this day.  In 1997 an explosion threw up tons of ash up to 10,000 metres in the air.  Needless to say it is now off limits to cruising yachts and the exclusion zone extends out to 2 miles from the coast.  The original capital Plymouth was destroyed and the only good anchorage, and the only port of entry, is now on the North West tip in Little Bay and we duly arrived before sun down as we always try to do.  The bay was rolly and very noisy as a large wreck in the corner of the bay continues to shift on the swell making some quite fearsome noises and it grinds up and down on the rocks.  Not the most welcoming sound and the surf breaking on the beach also made going a shore a difficult task which we decided against trying.  We will leave in the morning for Guadeloupe!



                  The noisy wreck                                                                       I think that NOT going ashore in the dinghy was a good call!!!!


The pilot book also warned us that the ferry from Antigua and coastal freighters should be given plenty of space to turn and warned not to get too close to the dock.  Needless to say, a charter catamaran ‘parked’ right in front of the dock that evening.  As we were leaving the following morning at 6.30am they were rudely awakened by some very angry men on a very large freighter trying to get to the dock.  We left promptly with a very clear conscience……You really can’t do too much research on these places.



                                                                                  At least the sunset was quite stunning