In stormy weather and high waves we sailed from Antigua back to Boliante in Guadeloupe. For the first time we sailed the whole time with a recorded boat speed of 9 – 10 knots (later it was discovered that the log or speedometer was reading 1.2 knots high). After this long exhausting sailing day we could enjoy a day in Boliante in the hot spring – Wonderful!
The next day we continued to Dominica via the Iles de Saintes. Our Italian friends sailed with us for a while, but we were a little quicker and moved ahead. Despite the recurring squalls with heavy rain, it was a beautiful day of sailing.
In Dominica we stayed only one night and sailed early in the morning to Martinique where we anchored again in St.Pierre. Our friends Anne & Chris were also anchored there with their Najad 34. For a long time we wanted to climb the Montagne Pele (1497m) here and finally on the day after next the weather was reasonably good. It was a great hike and amazing views from the outer crater. The first 3 hours we hiked in the rain and through some muddy holes. But on the western side it then cleared up and we could enjoy the beautiful view. The inner crater we could not climb because it was permanently covered with low cloud. So we decided to descend on the west side and managed to spot a red tree Bird-eating spider elegantly climbing up a tree.
The next day we continued with bad weather and little wind to the south of Martinique and into Le Marin. Here we exchanged two of our cooking gas cylinders, “cleared out” of Martinique and did some shopping. Because on the Grenadines the food is very expensive and the choice is very limited, it was better to shop here.
We were able to have our PCR test done here for entry to St. Vincent. After the digital entry form with the negative results of the PCR test were sent off we could finally start. But our start was delayed by two old anchor chains caught on our anchor. These held our anchor captive for another hour. We managed to free one, but for the second anchor chain our German neighbour came to our rescue with an angle grinder and freed us from this heavy anchor chain.
With a wind BF 5/6 and a wave height of 1.5m we made good progress and sailed past the completely cloudy and rainy St.Lucia. Then we saw for the first time since the Atlantic crossing 6 fin whales, which crossed the way directly in front of Maya. A unique experience and when also a few dolphins crossed our way the day was perfect.
However the passage between St. Lucia and St. Vincent has an enormous counter current so that we had a boat speed of 6.5 – 7 kn. but the speed over ground was only 5 kn.
This delayed our progress and we got into St Vincent in the evening hours. Our Australian friends, whom we met in Le Marin before, had told us that one can anchor well in Chateaubelair on St. Vincent, which we did.
But it is not so easy to anchor in the dark in a strange bay. But we made it after 84 miles and locked our boat overnight, because we also knew that St. Vincent is not without danger.
A new arrival always includes a certain magic because of the nocturnal sounds, the strange smells and also the different lights in a strange anchorage.
First thing in the morning at 6 am we sailed to Bequia because we wanted to be there before midday to check in on time. After 4 hours of BF 6 and 1,5m high waves we reached the bay of Port Elizabeth and anchored directly in front of the restaurant which performs the entry formalities. After that we went with the dinghy to the main ferry dock and directly to the customs and immigration. Fortunately everything was no problem and at 1130 we were checked in. Our final anchorage we found in the Prince Margret Beach. And right in front of us there is also a floating bar. A visit with a local taxi to the “Old Hegg” Turtle sanctuary was very interesting. An 83 year old local takes care of the breeding of the turtles and complained that his countrymen would eat the little turtles if he didn’t collect them!
It also seems that the current war situation in Ukraine plays a role here and is perceived very seriously.