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February crowds #179478
01/03/2019 12:49 PM
01/03/2019 12:49 PM
Joined: Jun 2016
Posts: 47
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Shifty Offline OP
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Shifty  Offline OP
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We are chartering out of St. Thomas with CYOA from February 19-28. Will spend a night at Leinster Bay (St. John) on first night, then roaming the BVI for remainder of trip. As I've never chartered in February and haven't been back to the BVI since Irma, I'd be grateful for your thoughts on what we ought to expect in terms of crowds, particularly at mooring time.

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Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179490
01/03/2019 03:22 PM
01/03/2019 03:22 PM
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Washington DC
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bailau Offline
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I would be interested as well...I am taking 8 guys out of BVI on a powercat and have done many May/June and October but never Feb. Maybe we will see you Shifty. 2/16-2/24. I plan to avoid Full Moon at Trellis

Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179491
01/03/2019 03:40 PM
01/03/2019 03:40 PM
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Posts: 489
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ggffrr11 Offline
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You're getting into some "prime real estate" time in late February. I would have a plan B on overnight mooring/anchor abilities. There is no harm in calling any of the "284" local area code numbers (i.e., Cooper) to see if someone will answer and give you a current free mooring ball count. Dinner reservations may be in order also. Never forget the term "Halloversbay".

Re: February crowds [Re: ggffrr11] #179499
01/03/2019 05:12 PM
01/03/2019 05:12 PM
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Shifty Offline OP
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Maybe, Bailau! We connected with a fellow TTOL member up at Leverick last time we were there.

And thanks for the counsel, ggffrr11. What are you hearing about overall charter traffic since Irma? During any given season, is it back to normal? Or 75%?

Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179500
01/03/2019 05:58 PM
01/03/2019 05:58 PM
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Posts: 489
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ggffrr11 Offline
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We're going first part of February / you'll have better chance for "ideal vacation weather" by end of February. You may have less sailors than pre-Irma but there are less places up and going (no BEYC, etc).

---- cooperisland-bvi.com > webcam >>>>>>> Cooper mooring field live webcam >> you can check webcam in the afternoon (Atlantic time zone) > get an idea of when the mooring balls are filling up prior to your trip

--- Make sure you are up on your anchoring skills > most of the overnight sites have anchoring options (Cooper isle - Halloversbay)

--- Beware of any NE "stout weather" > this forces a lot of boats into a few mooring fields. Sometimes, it is better to stay put and keep/ upgrade on your current mooring ball than to explore the new world

Have fun!

Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179503
01/03/2019 07:29 PM
01/03/2019 07:29 PM
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Posts: 1,914
Ontario, Canada
warren460 Online content
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Hallovers Bay can be challengingly to anchor in. Lots of coral to mess you up.


Warren
S/V Scuba Doo
Lagoon 450
Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179510
01/03/2019 09:23 PM
01/03/2019 09:23 PM
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Posts: 762
Louisville, KY
NoelHall Offline
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Yes, that pesky coral ????


Noel Hall
"It is humbling indeed, to discover my own opinion is only correct less than 50% of the time."

www.noelhall.com
Re: February crowds [Re: NoelHall] #179513
01/03/2019 10:20 PM
01/03/2019 10:20 PM
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Shifty Offline OP
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I really appreciate the input, gang, and I’m sure Bailey does too. But I’m seriously embarrassed to confess not only that I’ve never been to Hallovers Bay, I’ve never even heard of it. Been to to BVI Numerous times over the past 30 years and it’s never popped up on our radar!

Probably goes to show that I’m a creature of habit...We keep saying we are going to try new spots, but I’m the end there are so often first-timers with us that we keep going to the places we know and love. In fact, if we’re up to me, I’d be done with the Baths for good (when my dad took me there in 1986, we were the only people there...and no shops, restaurants or moorings). But, alas, we are as usual bringing newbies. So that probably means I’m going to battle the cruise ship multitudes at the big rocks by the water!

But I digress.

So what’s the scoop with Hallovers Bay? Where is it? Overnight suitable? Moorings, or anchorage only?

Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179515
01/03/2019 10:45 PM
01/03/2019 10:45 PM
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 762
Louisville, KY
NoelHall Offline
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I remember only one mooring ball, although there are multiple scuba diving balls nearby. There may be more, I just didn't notice them in December. I believe the 'white balls' are overnight balls, whereas the red and yellow are day balls only (some for dive boats, others for day visitors). I don't know if there is coral structure beyond the beach, although it is a 'no-no' to anchor in coral. Hallover (is that the spelling) is around the corner from Cooper Island Beach Club (Manchineel Bay), just past Cistern Point. To be truthful, I've never stayed overnight there, although the scuba diving is good along that coast (wreck alley). If that mooring ball is available, I suspect it would be a nice quiet spot. I have heard that if you walk to the other side, it is sometimes referred to as 'Trash Beach' because it catches a lot of flotsam. Again, I've never been there. I think the key to visiting the Baths is go early or go late. I like going into Leverick and renting a vehicle to visit the Baths and Hog Heaven on the return. The swim from the boat at the Baths is perhaps not as easy as it looks and you can no longer take the dinghy to shore. Not to be discouraged, just aware. We like Kelly's Cove outside the Norman Island Bight … great sunset and snorkeling. Also behind Peter Island at Key Bay is a nice quiet anchorage in settled water. Hope this helps.


Noel Hall
"It is humbling indeed, to discover my own opinion is only correct less than 50% of the time."

www.noelhall.com
Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179516
01/03/2019 10:50 PM
01/03/2019 10:50 PM
Joined: May 2006
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Louisville, KY
NoelHall Offline
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Noel Hall
"It is humbling indeed, to discover my own opinion is only correct less than 50% of the time."

www.noelhall.com
Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179518
01/03/2019 11:31 PM
01/03/2019 11:31 PM
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 1,914
Ontario, Canada
warren460 Online content
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Haulover is what I know it as, although my Navionics calls it hallovers. Because of the topography, the wind accelerates between the hills resulting in gusty conditions. I don’t recall any mooring balls.

If you anchor, please be careful not to anchor on coral, there was a lot there a few years ago.


Warren
S/V Scuba Doo
Lagoon 450
Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179555
01/04/2019 11:34 AM
01/04/2019 11:34 AM
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bailau Offline
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Moorings said they were at 75% in October 18 when we were there. Thanks for the input especially Haulover Bay which I had never heard of. Key Bay is a great spot.

I have never anchored in Great Harbour JVD...any spots/tips?

Thanks
Rob

Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179557
01/04/2019 12:19 PM
01/04/2019 12:19 PM
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CestLaVie Offline
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Great Harbor is great if you can pick up a mooring, but anchoring is a challenge even for experienced sailors. The bottom is hard with a field of low lying coral heads. When anchoring, the chain will often hand up on the coral heads making it appear as though the anchor is set, only to start dragging as the boat swings in the wind-leads to a multitude of close encounters followed by exchanges of captains pointing the finger to each other as to who is dragging. For my crew, no ball in Great Harbor means a trip elsewhere


Sailing is not a matter of life and death-it is more important than that
Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179561
01/04/2019 01:08 PM
01/04/2019 01:08 PM
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bailau Offline
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thanks CestLaVie...I will follow your sage advice. where else would you go around that area assuming the mooring field is full? I am picking up passengers at 330 from Beef Island and want to head up there and then go to White Bay the next morning.

Re: February crowds [Re: bailau] #179563
01/04/2019 01:32 PM
01/04/2019 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by bailau
thanks CestLaVie...I will follow your sage advice. where else would you go around that area assuming the mooring field is full? I am picking up passengers at 330 from Beef Island and want to head up there and then go to White Bay the next morning.

Little harbour has moorings. There are also some in the diamond cay/long bay area on the east side of Jost

Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179566
01/04/2019 01:49 PM
01/04/2019 01:49 PM
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CestLaVie Offline
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As Cajunscuba noted, Little Harbor is close if all the moorings are taken at Great Harbor. Cane Garden Bay is our backup and just a short hop that would allow you to make a quick run to White Bay


Sailing is not a matter of life and death-it is more important than that
Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179567
01/04/2019 02:18 PM
01/04/2019 02:18 PM
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I think previous posters have Great Harbor Peter confused with Great Harbor, Jost, Same with Little Harbor. Be sure to clarify because I am not sure Little Harbor, Peter Island has mooring balls. Remember, the original questions had to do with Cooper Island.

And our backup plan from Cooper has always been to motor over to Marina Cay/Trellis, assuming of course that there is enough daylight. And isn't there good anchoring at Salt if the weather is good and winds are favorable?

Re: February crowds [Re: bailau] #179569
01/04/2019 02:21 PM
01/04/2019 02:21 PM
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Posts: 1,633
Cane Garden Bay, Tortola
JasonHelmbrecht Offline
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Originally Posted by bailau
thanks CestLaVie...I will follow your sage advice. where else would you go around that area assuming the mooring field is full? I am picking up passengers at 330 from Beef Island and want to head up there and then go to White Bay the next morning.

The other option for your passengers is to taxi from Beef to Cane Garden Bay and meet you there. Your timing will be pretty tight if they arrive at 3:30, have to do immigrations, haul gear to Trellis, and the sail or motor all the way to JVD. You'll be hard pressed to do that before dark.

Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179573
01/04/2019 03:02 PM
01/04/2019 03:02 PM
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bailau Offline
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Thanks Jason et.al....if it is close to dusk I will just stay at Trellis/Marina Cay. I do have a powercat this time so can do 20+ kts and it is probably less than 10NM. I also have a bunch of guys (5 on board and 4 to pick up) with instructions to have 1 small carry on so we will see how long it takes to get through customs.

i just didnt want to get "stuck" at JVD at 500 looking for a mooring with no suitable anchorage. Thanks Cajun for Little Harbour idea as I hadnt stayed there in years. I was thinking about CGB where I stayed in October.

Re: February crowds [Re: Shifty] #179588
01/04/2019 04:25 PM
01/04/2019 04:25 PM
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Posts: 762
Louisville, KY
NoelHall Offline
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We did briefly pull into Little Harbor at JVD a couple of weeks ago, just to check it out. Yes, there are mooring balls, although the harbor seemed to lack any ambience due to a lot of hurricane damage still very obvious.


Noel Hall
"It is humbling indeed, to discover my own opinion is only correct less than 50% of the time."

www.noelhall.com
Re: February crowds [Re: NoelHall] #179594
01/04/2019 05:49 PM
01/04/2019 05:49 PM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 613
Houston, Texas
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Originally Posted by NoelHall
We did briefly pull into Little Harbor at JVD a couple of weeks ago, just to check it out. Yes, there are mooring balls, although the harbor seemed to lack any ambience due to a lot of hurricane damage still very obvious.


We overnighted in Little Harbour JVD in our July trip and were pretty much the only boat there. Irma damage, including the wrecked ferry, was very much in evidence. Had a great dinner at Abe's where they had managed to reopen using various parts of buildings that had survived. The dinner with the nice folks there made for a special evening.


Louis from Houston

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