|…Typical St John harbor view…|
After our three weeks of bliss in the British Virgin Islands, we sailed back to St. John and spent 5 nights circling the many wonderful harbors. We learned that only 2,700 people live on St. John. We also learned that there is nearly zero anchoring as well. The joy is that the US National Parks services manages 300 mooring balls for cruisers to use for $26/night. We secured our NPS “Golden Pass” so this gave us a 50% discount on the mooring ball fees, what a deal. You have to love supporting the National Parks Services as they do such a great job with a very limited budget. We anchored in new places along the south shore, including Saltpond, Cruz Harbor and Hansen Bay and look forward to exploring more of St. John next season.
|Sailing into St. Thomas|
Onward to Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas. We love to anchor in towns, and here we had this town immediately off our stern. After entering the main harbor, we went directly over to the east corner and dropped the anchor off Yacht Haven Grand. Usually there are one or two cruise ships in port, but lucky for us there were none, so the town was far less crowded. We were enticed by a Facebook ad to head out on a date night to one of the finest restaurants in town called “A Room with a View.” We booked a table for 1830 and enjoyed the best meal of the year! WOW, what a place this was, with excellent service and delicious food. Our table overlooked Island Spirit anchored down in the harbor. See cool photos below.
|Sailing for Puerto Rico|
After one day in St Thomas, we topped up the diesel tank at Crown Bay Marina and sailed west. During our two night stop on Culebra, we rejoined sailing buddies Sea Star and Fezwig. We took off the headsails and decomissioned the dinghy. Ashore in Dewey, we had lunch at the famous Zaco’s Tacos. All three boats booked slips at the massive marina Puerto del Ray, Fajardo (with 1,000 slips!) to decommission and haul out May 22 for safe land storage during hurricane season. We had planned to haul out in Grenada, but we got lazy and fell in love with the BVIs and USVI and felt we should do more of this area next fall before sailing down island. We were close, it is only about 350-400 nautical miles to Grenada, but it was a real joy to slow down and take in these beautiful, familiar islands, beaches and coral reefs. We have all next season to sail down island and that will only be 400 nm! We usually travel 2,000 to 2,500 nautical miles a season so next season will really be easy!
|Dock 1033, pier #10|
Now that we are docked in Puerto Rico, we have taken off the sails, the canvas, washed the boat and are stuffing everything below decks while we live aboard with this craziness. In a few days, we will haul out. Coolaroo Sun Shade has been shipped in and we are ready to make our second custom cover Monday and Tuesday. For now, we are preparing for haul out and are already missing the joy and peace of the cruising life. We can not wait to relaunch November 6 and get Island Spirit sailing once again.
Thank you for sailing along……
Snorkeling St John….beautiful…
St. Thomas….Date Night…A Room with a View
Sailing St Thomas to Puerto Rico
Docking in Puerto Rico at the Massive Puerto del Ray Maina
Time to finish the de-rigging and prepare for haul out. Then Monday and Tuesday it will be Coolaroo Shade Cover Round #2. We will cover the entire boat like we did last year with a 90% UV breathable sun cover fabric. This is what it will look like when we have the cover on….