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latest SVI info? #178385
12/19/2018 02:07 PM
12/19/2018 02:07 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
LocalSailor Offline OP
Traveler
LocalSailor  Offline OP
Traveler
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
Despite living and sailing here in the VI for over 40 years I am sailing in the SVI next week, for the 1st time,that is exciting to me for sure.
Picking up a cat from Sail Caribe so no C&I info needed but any other info would be great.
Spots not to miss, mooring and anchoring tips, food options, bad ideas, food and water provisioning tips or anything that will make it easier or better for the trip is appreciated. Thanks TTOL!

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Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #178388
12/19/2018 02:32 PM
12/19/2018 02:32 PM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,618
St. John, USVI
RickG Offline
Traveler
RickG  Offline
Traveler
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,618
St. John, USVI
Hey LocalSailor, sounds like fun! I have no Vieqes info since Maria.

I'll check current water status with a friend on Culebra. There have been promises of water to come to the town dock in Ensenada Honda. Sail Caribe will certainly know and the folks at CYOA likely do. If the wind stays from the East, we like the Western Bays that run North of Dewey marked as Tarja and Tamarindo with day mooring balls. If things are rough, we leave the boat in Ensenada Honda and grab a Jeep from Carlos' Jeeps and hit the sights from land. There is a farm towards Zoni Beach that has a sign out for fresh farm eggs and has produce/fruit in season.

In Dewey, we tend to hit Dinghy Dock, Zacos Tacos, and Heather's for pizza. There are other places that are well reviewed, but we tend to go low budget.

Have a great time. Pretty jealous, but we'll be in neighborhood long-term starting in June.

Cheers, RickG


S/V Echoes, 2003 Benetau 423
St. John, USVI
Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #178389
12/19/2018 02:36 PM
12/19/2018 02:36 PM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,618
St. John, USVI
RickG Offline
Traveler
RickG  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,618
St. John, USVI
Friend from Culebra says water at Dinghy Dock is $0.25 per gallon BYO jugs.

To mention, Milka's Grocery has a dinghy dock in the canal and a good butcher and decent prices loading a ton of products into a small space.

Cheers, RickG


S/V Echoes, 2003 Benetau 423
St. John, USVI
Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #178392
12/19/2018 02:53 PM
12/19/2018 02:53 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
LocalSailor Offline OP
Traveler
LocalSailor  Offline OP
Traveler
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
Thanks Rick, I am planning on the Sail Caribe info as the most current. Capt Jay was great help , and those CYOA boats mostly have watermakers!
Just a friends and family sail so low pressure Xmas overall.
See you here this summer and onward.

Last edited by LocalSailor; 12/19/2018 02:57 PM.
Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #178566
12/21/2018 05:14 PM
12/21/2018 05:14 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
LocalSailor Offline OP
Traveler
LocalSailor  Offline OP
Traveler
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
well I will be there tomorrow so I will report back - kinda disappointed that just Rick responded but understand.

Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #178570
12/21/2018 07:43 PM
12/21/2018 07:43 PM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 2,719
VI,NY,AZ
sail445 Offline
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sail445  Offline
Traveler
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 2,719
VI,NY,AZ
Don’t be disappointed, not much has happened in Culebra this last year but it should or I should say it’s about the same it has been for the last thirty years.
Small islands are easily repairable after major storms

Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #178571
12/21/2018 08:11 PM
12/21/2018 08:11 PM
Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 13
Durban South Africa
B
Bernard Offline
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Bernard  Offline
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B
Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 13
Durban South Africa
We have just got back to St Thomas after a few days in the SVI. Have had the most fantastic trip ever.

Saturday. Great downwind sail from St Thomas to Ensenada Honda to check in. Tied up to a mooring bouy while we went ashore to check in at the airport. Went for lunch at Dinghy Dock restaurant before motoring around the corner to a free mooring ball for the night at Ensenada Dakity. Perfect smooth conditions with a nice breeze over the reef. Highly recommended anchorage.

Sunday. Motored back into Ensenada Honda to pick up some supplies at Colmado, which was surprisingly well stocked. Motored around the corner to Bahia de Almodovar. Another perfect anchorage with free mooring balls and not another boat in site.

Monday. Motored up to Tortuga Beach for the day. Anchored just off the beach. One other boat in the bay. Basically had the beach to ourselves. Decided that it was a bit rolly to spend the night so went back to Bahia de Almodovar for the night.

Tuesday. Sailed to Flamenco Beach. Only boat there and hardly anyone on the beach. Spent morning on the beach before motoring around to Playa Carlos. Another spot all to ourselves. Snorkeled for a while before motoring to Cayo de Luis Pena for the night. Again on a free mooring ball without another boat in site.

Wednesday. Left early for Bahia Salina Del Sur on Vieques. Amazing downwind sail, managed a top speed of 11.5 Knots. Perfect calm conditions behind the reef at Bahia Salina Del Sur. Anchored for a short while and went onto the beach. Not a soul in site. Coloured flags on the beach. Not sure if this was to do with unexploded ordinance clearing. After breakfast set sail for Bahia de la Chiva. Was pretty rolly so after an hour or so we decided to go onto Esperanza for the night. Picked up a mooring ball for $25.00 and went ashore for a quick dinner at Duffies before going on the bio bay tour. The bio bay tour was well worth the $50.00 each.

Thursday. Motored back up to Bahia Salina Del Sur. Anchored in perfect smooth conditions and spent the day on the beach. Again, we were all alone. Spent the night on anchor. Most amazing night with no other boats and no artificial lights visible, it was as if were all alone in the world.

Friday. Made an early start for St Croix, however after about an hour of hard on the wind, decided that it was going to be a very long day to get to St Croix, so tacked and motor sailed up to Christmas Cove, which is where we are now!

The SVl’s are fantastic, and I cannot believe how few boats are down there. It really was the trip of a lifetime.

Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #178574
12/21/2018 09:29 PM
12/21/2018 09:29 PM
Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 66
New York, NY
C
c388791 Offline
Traveler
c388791  Offline
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C
Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 66
New York, NY
I was there last week, in a Dufour 35 from Dream Yacht Charters in Fajardo. Spectacular sailing trip. Here are a few highlights:

1. Sailing was easy. Mostly line of sight, reefs well charted and marked, anchorages easy to enter, nothing tricky or surprising.
2. Didn't need water, so I can't comment on that.
3. Anchored every night except for one on a mooring in Esperanza--could have easily anchored there too.
4. Mooring balls on Culebra are free, the ones in Esperanza, Vieques are private and cost $25. The guy will come by to collect. Some of the mooring balls on Culebra are marked 'Day Use Only' but Cap'n Suzy from DYC says its OK to overnight on them.
5. Took a day mooring on the west side of Culebrita and hiked up to the lighthouse. Trail isn't marked from the beach, but if you walk south along the beach you'll see a big opening in the mangroves--that's the trail. Pretty easy to find. Swarms of white butterflies surrounded us as we hiked up the hill. Lots of goats up there and lots of goat by-products, but light house ruins were pretty cool and the views very nice.
6. Locals were all incredibly friendly and gracious.
7. We did the 2130 bio-bay tour through FunBrothers in Esperanza--incredible and worth every penny of the $55. There were 5 people in 3 kayaks + the guide and we were the only ones in the bay. Guide was knowledgable and good. Def recommend the late tour so you get the darkness after the moon sets.
8. We anchored one night in Puerto Ferro, Vieques. Some mild luminescence there, but nothing like the bio bay tour. Water in Puerto Ferro was kind of green and murky, but the bay was quite and peaceful--we were the only boat except for a handful of abandoned boats anchored near the north edge of the bay. Shallow entrance, we saw a low of 7.2 feet entering, but the depths seem accurately charted.
9. Dinner at El Quenepo in Esperanza, Vieques was superb. Superb food, superb service, superb presentation, very nice ambience. I travel all over the word and eat at lots of fancy restaurants, and this one is right in the league with the best of them. A little pricier and fancier than the rest, but truly a great dining experience.
10. Didn't buy a whole lot of provisioning during the trip but saw a grocery near the Dinghy Dock in Culebra. The Green Store in Esperanza has great google reviews, but stank like a dead rat (literally) when we were there, and the meat freezer was broken with all the meat rotting inside. We left with and onion and a can of black beans.
11. Anchoring off Punta Arenas, Vieques was spectacular. Still no road access to the beach since the hurricane, so we had the beach to ourselves. One other boat anchored in the area. Slight rolls from a south swell, but a beautiful night.

Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #178579
12/21/2018 10:15 PM
12/21/2018 10:15 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
LocalSailor Offline OP
Traveler
LocalSailor  Offline OP
Traveler
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
Thanks, really appreciate the detailed and current info. Looking forward to the week ahead.

Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #179258
12/31/2018 10:39 AM
12/31/2018 10:39 AM
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
LocalSailor Offline OP
Traveler
LocalSailor  Offline OP
Traveler
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 990
USVI
Back from the SVI trip yesterday. Despite some unruly waves generated by a 10' North swell and some very strong 25kt+ winds a few days I really enjoyed seeing so many new [to me] beautiful places.
The highlight was Xmas eve and day anchored in Culebrita - before the swell kicked up later in the week. I have been a lot of places in the Caribbean over the last 40+ years sailing and Culebrita easily ranks among the prettiest, remote anchorages ever.
Spent 2 days of the unsettled weather on a mooring in Vieques in Esperanza, El Quenepo is a 1st class restaurant, Thanks for the tip.Got ice in town.
Spent an overnight in Cayo Luis Pena, at anchor, very beautiful.
Overnight at Palomino on a mooring was a PR party boat scene and a swirling current, perhaps in advance of the big swell arriving?
Anchored behind Cayo Pirata in Culebra - good access to Dewey, some minor provisioning available, got ice and tasty fresh bread.

Sail Caribe in Puerto del Rey was an excellent and very responsive helpful charter compnay. The man in Charge, [Jose] should be an example to all fleet managers. Excellent and speedy communication with him during the week out, made the whole trip quite a bit easier for me.
The vessel was a Lagoon 42
https://www.sailcaribe.com/kaiyomaru
Only very minor typical boat problems, very good condition.

We provisioned in Fajardo at Ralph's -- big supermarket - good wine dept. - medium level meat selections - small buy -the- case dept for beverages, good prices and selection.
Experienced crew brought frozen steaks, smoked salmon ETC., down with them so the cuisine was top notch.

Thank You to the TTOL members for the excellent pre-trip info.!!!!

Personally I now plan to spend a lot more time exploring over there, beautiful unspoiled places abound.
*************Although there are free moorings available in quite a few of the popular spots, the PR power boating community tends to pick them up Stern TO - this has resulted in frayed, chewed up mooring gear and it is something to be Very Aware of as a safety issue, especially overnight.

Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #179324
01/01/2019 11:37 AM
01/01/2019 11:37 AM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 2,719
VI,NY,AZ
sail445 Offline
Traveler
sail445  Offline
Traveler
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 2,719
VI,NY,AZ
Next time you go check to make sure there aren’t any holidays and you’ll find moorings except maybe on weekends

Re: latest SVI info? [Re: LocalSailor] #181908
01/26/2019 06:55 AM
01/26/2019 06:55 AM
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 292
Fajardo
cruzan1 Offline
Traveler
cruzan1  Offline
Traveler
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 292
Fajardo
Just a heads up, most of the DPNR moorings around Culebra are in really bad shape. Broken painters and fraying main lines coming up from the bottom. If you are going to overnight, please dive the ball and make sure the gear is in good shape. Numerous boats have broken loose in the last few months.


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