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Old 03-06-2013
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Re: Plan of Attack in BVI, Island Hopping

Background: My first charter in the BVI was in 1982. I ran charter groups down there in the late 80s and early 90s. A lot of my deliveries start or end there. Not counting deliveries I've been down there over 40 times.

My comments are based on Joe's because I think he has good suggestions even where I would do something different. There are a lot of personal choices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
Leaving Roadtown you can go left or right.
Agreed. I go left. Why head downwind and then head back up? Cooper Island is my preferred first stop. It's an easy reach from Roadtown and most people who start the same day as you will head to the The Bight on Norman. Cooper has about the best sunset in the BVI.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
With 14 days, i'd put Anegada (with Conch's permission) on your list. This will be the at least a 2-3 day stop.
Yes - go to Anegada. I go there because I love the sail up and back. We usually spend one night. There is a lot of cool stuff. Cow Wreck beach for the beach bar, Big Bamboo for burgers, Flash of Beauty for the best snorkeling. Neptune's Treasure just pulled all their moorings due to increase in ground lease cost, which gives more room for anchoring. Still plenty of moorings off Anegada Reef Hotel for those so inclined. Get Walker's approach chart if it's your first visit. See below.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
Depending if you want to anchor or use moorings, be with people or get away from the crowd, will determine your stops.
Also agreed. I'm an anchor guy when I can. Interpret my comments accordingly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
From Road town, i'd stop at Trellis Bay first, grab a mooring, have lunch at the loose mongoose, stroll the beach, dine at the last resort. call for reservations by 4pm, this applies to most restaurants, especially this time of year.
This is definitely a personal preference issue. I like Marina Cay better than Trellis.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
From Trellis, I'd head to Virgin Gorda, stopping at the Dogs for a snorkel, or just a pause, to get folks off the boat, in the water.
Right. I do Cooper first day. Second day early visit to the Baths then Marina Cay. Next day Dogs and on to North Sound.

Check with your charter company about using the NPT moorings at the Baths. Maintenance has been spotty. For a while Moorings and Sunsail were requiring you leave someone aboard at the mooring. If that is the case for you charter company while you are there then I definitely concur with Joe about renting a car to see the Baths. If you can take a ball get one at the South end and land your crew in Devil's Bay. The swim from the dinghy line there is shorter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
I would pull into Leverick bay, enjoy their pool, do laundry, provision up and ck out North Sound, Vixen Point, Saba, Bitter End. Take a taxi to the Baths, make a day of that.
I try to spend two days in North Sound. I anchor in Drake's Anchorage off Moskito Island, walk the beach, and hang at Jumbies at Leverick. Janet LOVES the spa there. When I head to the BVI she starts making calls to the Spa at Leverick. Second night we move and anchor with the cruisers off Prickly Pear and hang with them at happy hour at Saba Rock. BEYC is overrated and overpriced in my opinion, even when an owner is picking up the tab after a delivery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
From there, Anegada. Its about 15NM heading 003. Double ck that, as i usually leave from Jost Van Dyke. THere's a whole website dedicated to Anegada, its approach and what to do there.
That would be Walker's site BVIPirate.com . He sells an approach chart based on his soundings. He also has corrections for various chart packages on different chart plotters. Interestingly enough, like me, Walker is not a big fan of Anegada lobster. *grin* It's worth the experience but if you aren't sure split one and get something else.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
From Anegada, I'd stop at Marina Cay, across from Trellis bay. Beach fun, food, some shopping. Then, I'd go down the north side of Tortola, stopping in Cane Garden, if the weather permits, on to Jost Van Dyke, Diamond Cay to start. Hike for 10-20 minutes to the bubbler, natures jacuzzi. Work your way to White Bay. Great beach, lots of folks at the Soggy Dollar Bar.
The sail from Anegada to Jost Van Dyke is one of my favorite runs in the BVI. For some people it's long and far. Heading back to Marina Cay/Trellis/Great Camanoe/Scrub breaks it up.

Get a copy of one of the local papers that have a cruise ship schedule and avoid Cane Garden Bay on cruise ship days.

I go from Anegada to either Sandy Cay or Sandy Spit (home to Corona commercials and many music videos) for a late lunch. We hop to Little Harbor for dinner and the night and then White Bay the next day after a walk to the Bubbly Pool.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
I'd leave for West End, Tortola, grab a mooring, and if you could not get into Cane Garden Bay due to weather, rent a car from Jerry's car rental, they'll pick you up, and spend time seeing the beaches, make reservations at banankeet, for best sunset dining and then Pam's delight, for great local food.

From West End, i'd head to Norman Island. Snorkel the caves then head to the beach at Pirates, stopping for lunch on the Willie T. For my last stop, i'd make my way to Cooper Island, directly across from Road town, allowing for an ez run back to Conch.
I don't usually stop in Soper's Hole/West End unless we're running out of food or need to drop someone at the ferry to go back to STT. Again - personal choices. It's very protected in there so it can be warmer than other places.

Depending on who is aboard I'll do my last night in The Bight on Norman (Willy T and Pirates ex Billy Bones) on at Key Cay on the south shore of Peter. The latter is my personal preference. Very quiet. If Key Cay is full (only fits two or three boats) I used to stop in Money Bay on Norman but the construction there has taken some of the attraction away.

Pirates had a major overhaul over the winter and is reported to be more upscale with prices to match. I haven't been there and can't speak to it.

It's hard not to have a great time in the BVI. Go now.
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