Sun 30 Apr 2006 15:33
Diamond Cay off Jost Van Dyke is probably going to be the furthest West we go on this trip. It's 64 degrees 44 West. St George's on Bermuda is 64.40 so if the wind drives us West we may go a bit further en route but, hopefully, not much. We started at 1.10 East so we've done 66 or so of the 360 - a bit less than one fifth of the way round the world. 
With Wild Alliance, we left Diamond Cay on the 26th and motor sailed up the North side of Tortola, through the passage South of Guana and Great Camanoe Islands and back to Marina Cay. Regina and Koshlong are going to explore more of Jost Van Dyke. We filled the water and fuel tanks in Marina Cay and spent a night there at anchor. The following morning we left at 0730 for Anegada. This is a long narrow and very low island about 15 miles to the North of the rest of the BVIs. The wind was from the SSE and enough to sail, which was pleasant. Anegada is not volcanic, like almost every other island we've been to but the result only of tectonic plates pressing against each other. The highest point is said to be no more than 28 feet. It was a bit like being back in Suffolk.
Getting in is quite tricky. The pilot book says there are at least 300 wrecks on the reefs that encircle the island. There's a bouyed channel but it gets as shallow as 2 metres. The harbour offers good holding but not much water. We anchored with a whole 50cm under the keel. WA fed us with a large red snapper caught on the way. It was delicious. The following day we took a taxi across the island to Loblolly Beach, which offered great snorkelling according to the pilot book. And it did. There was a reef a hundred yards off with lots of fish and turtles. We played cricket and soccer on the beach - much to the fascination of the few American tourists  - and had a picnic lunch. On the way back we stopped at a beach bar. The barman rushed off to buy lobsters telling us to help ourselves to drinks and leave the money on the bar. It summed up a very relaxed place. 
On Saturday we got up early again and motor sailed back to Tortola. The wind was almost on the nose. We tried to get into Village Cay Marina to finish our preparations and provisioning but it was full. An American rally heading North had delayed for a couple of days waiting for better weather. We are now watching the weather fairly closely. We anchored in Road Town Harbour.  
We're all very conscious our time in the Caribbean will soon be at an end. Regina will be the first to go early next week. We had a farewell curry for them onboard on Saturday night. Koshlong and Wild Alliance came making 10 adults and 10 children on Tamarisk. It was fun but sad, too, to think we'll all soon be going our separate ways. 
Anna and Eddie with Tamarisk in the background anchored off Anegada
Penny and the barman-less bar
Anna with kite on Loblolly beach, Anegada
Eddie having a drink
Nancy and Jon from Wild Alliance
Loblolly beach with the reef in the background
Anna says Loblolly Beach was really cool.  The water was very clear, and the reef was fantastic.  There were some almost prehistoric fish, they were like half barricuda half pipe fish, with big, big teeth.    It was perfect for kite flying, we all had fun.  Robin (on holiday with WA) made a mermaid in the sand and called it Anna.  I bought some dubloons, they are real metal but they're not actual treasure.