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  #1  
Old 01-21-2008
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St. Thomas night anchorages/moorings

Hello,

I'll be bareboating the BVI's in March out of French Town (Charlotte Amalie). I'm looking for a secure night anchorage or mooring field somewhere relatively close for our first night out. We probably won't be checked out and underway until sometime after 1430 or so, so we can't go too far. I'm considering Christmas cove at St. James, or even Honeymoon Bay on Water Island. Otherwise we may have to just spend the first night at the dock. Any thoughts?

Thanks
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Old 01-21-2008
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It would seem that you will be using CYOA as your charter company.

If you want to be able to dinghy to shore for a beverage then Honeymoon would be a good choice. There is nothing developed in Christmas Cove, but you could shoot across the channel into Cowpet Bay and hit either the bar/restaurant at the Elysian resort or depending on the night of the week, the St Thomas Yacht Club (west of the Elysian about 150 yds). One other place to consider spending your first night would be Lindbergh Bay which is the bay right next to the airport and has three different restaurant/bars to choose from. There is almost always lots of room to anchor and it is generally a very calm place to sleep. Have a good time and please post after your trip and describe your experience with CYOA.

Last edited by FarCry; 01-21-2008 at 08:48 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 01-21-2008
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Thanks FarCry,
I have a feeling that after a long day of airports, provisioning etc. we will be turning in early anyway, so I'm not too concerned about hitting the beach for a drink (though you never know ;-). I'm just thinking about a secure anchorage for the night. We're going to head up to JVD first thing in the morning, so I thought Christmas Cove would give us a head start. I've read a couple of conflicting reports about the viability of Christmas Cove as a night anchorage, and since this will be my first time Bareboating the BVI's, I thought I'd better get some second opinions.
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Old 01-21-2008
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Rather than choose a single overnite destination now, I believe it would be prudent to await your departure.

1. You may or may not get away by 1430 as you anticipate.
2. Christmas Cove (Great St. James) is a wonderful overnite anchorage, but it is a long slog (if you're sailing) or punch (if you're motoring) to windward. If the trades are kicking up that afternoon (and they tend to be strongest in the afternoon), it could be a very unpleasant trip and could put you past Cow & Calf rocks at the entrance to Christmas Cove in failing light.
3. Honeymoon Bay on Water Island has little room for anchoring; you might be able to find a spot along the north side or, if conditions are OK, in Lindbergh Bay as previously mentioned.

Not sure if you're allowed to anchor in the main harbour at Charlotte Amalie any more. If so, it's not a bad place to spend the night.

Worst case: spend the night at CY0C docks and walk to Craig and Sallys in Frenchtown for a great bar and a wonderful dinner.

Bill
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Old 01-21-2008
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Thumbs up My vote would be Christmas Cove...

North side of the bay. Only 8 or 9 miles, depending on how many corners you cut. Wake up in a very nice Caribbean anchorage (for the USVI's), with your own pet barracuda under the boat, on your first day of the charter. As previously stated, watch out for the cow and calf rocks as you approach St. James. Saw the new BVI cat ferry perched high and dry on them a few years ago.
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Old 01-22-2008
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After reading through the responses I realize I did not read the military time correctly as originally posted. If you do get underway by 14:30 (I thought I saw 4:30 and was trying to get you someplace quickly for the night DUH!!) you could also consider moving on past Christmas Cove to Hawkesnest Bay on St John where you should have no problem grabbing a mooring ball.. This is generally a decent place to spend the night, I can nearly guarantee you will see many turtles around you and that also puts you in place for a shorter dash to JVD getting you there a bit earlier with a good chance of grabbing one of the few available mooring balls. Otherwise the snorkeling can be decent at Christmas Cove and one can always find an area to drop the hook. In anchoring in CC be aware that there are some areas of dense turtle grass that can make setting your hook a bit challenging depending on the anchor on your charter vessel. There are some sandy spots, you just need to look. Have a great trip. When will you be in the VI's?
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Old 01-22-2008
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Thanks for the responses. We'll be in the VI's march 1st. I've put together two itineraries, laid out my routes and waypoints, anchorages, etc. etc. but not having sailed the area it's still all "just on paper" so thought I might get some advice from those who have been-there-done that.
From what I've read of the winds shifting from SE to NE as the season progresses, I thought it would be wise to put together two different itineraries.

My first itinerary Includes Christmas cove night 1, JVD night 2, the Bight night 3, Marina cay night 4, Gorda sound night 5, Sopers hole night 6, and hawksnest night 7.

My second itinerary is clockwise around St. John and Tortola: Christmas cove night 1, JVD night 2, Marina Cay night 3, Gorda Sound night 4, the Bight night 5, Sopers hole night 6, and hawksnest night 7 (the clockwise route).

Any thoughts? Thanks again for all your input. It's very much appreciated.

Scott
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Old 01-22-2008
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It looks like you have two fine options that account for prevailing winds. Enjoy.
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Old 03-23-2008
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Sapadeni where is your report on your experience with CYOA and a brief overview of your charter?

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