Dog Islands, Savanna Bay, Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour
Position: 18:27.341N 64:26.572W
Date: Wednesday 26th February 2014
It was time to go and explore some of the delights of the BVI. Our first foray was the short hop across to Dog Islands, where we picked up one of the mooring buoys provided by the National Park. These are a group of four very small uninhabited islands where overnight mooring is prohibited. But they do have some marvellous marine life to see. The water was very clear, in fact the colour and clarity of Bombay Saphire Gin. And there was an abundance of fish and coral to see plus a couple of turtles. We popped on the snorkelling gear and spent an hour or so introducing ourselves to the aquatic residents.
Later in the morning we carried on to Savanna Bay. This is a long thin stretch of water parallel to a white sandy beach and protected from the ocean by a coral reef. In order to get in (and out again) you have to sail slowly through the reef keeping a sharp lookout for shallow water. But once in the surroundings are quite beautiful. Ashore there is white sand backed by rich vegetation and with no buildings on the shore line. To seaward there is a shallow coral reef with again some splendid snorkelling.
After a brief lunch we relaxed taking in the very special surroundings only to hear the unmistakeable noise of a pump dumping fresh water out of our tanks. There were no taps turned on so what could be happening? A brief inspection soon identified that the hot water cylinder had sprung a leak. We had had the same problem about a year before whilst we had been in the Tobago Cays. Hallberg Rassy had sent us a new gasket and I had had it repaired in Antigua. So it should not have ruptured again so soon.
As we were very close to a marina (Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour) we thought that we’d go there and see if there was anyone around who could fix the problem. We chose to anchor outside the harbour rather than enter, although it turned out to be quite a rolly spot with all of the traffic entering and leaving the port.
In the morning we went ashore and soon found a company called The Workbench who were confident that they could order a new part from the USA and that it would be in Virgin Gorda by the following Thursday. After the problem in Tobago Cays I had fitted an isolating tap to the supply to the hot water cylinder so we would not lose any more water but would be without any hot water until the problem was fixed. This we could live with and we could continue to explore whilst waiting for the new gasket to arrive.
Sunset from the anchorage outside Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour.