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Anchoring at Peter Island

Posted By: CestLaVie

Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/11/2018 08:37 PM

Traveling with a party of eight to BVI January 27-Feb 4 on a Moorings 4800. All of us have been there multiple times, but we have never spent a night on Peter Island. Based on our itinerary, we are planning to spend our last evening, a Sunday, at Peter Island to allow us a short trip to get the boat back to the base and make the late morning ferry back to STT. As we will probably get to Peter rather late in the afternoon, I am assuming that finding a mooring ball may be a major challenge, thus making alternative plans for anchoring if necessary. Anchoring on the north side of the island, it looks like Little, Great harbors and Deadman Bay are possibilities, with White Bay or Key Point on the south side. Just looking for recommendations as to which of these may be our best alternatives for anchoring if we are unable to latch onto a mooring.

Also, I assume that there are no real dining/drinking options at Peter Island at this time?
Posted By: sunbvi

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/11/2018 11:00 PM

All the bights you mentioned are fine depending on the direction of wave/swell. Probably it is best to make the decision when you arrive on Peter ...
Posted By: SonOfTheSea

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/11/2018 11:40 PM

For what it’s worth, when my group went in May 2016 we anchored on the east end of Deadman’s Bay and dragged anchor overnight during some decent wave action and a storm that moved through. The boat had been fine all day, we had been anchored just fine for about 8 hours until we woke up at 2am to realize we were moving. Could’ve been our own fault in location selection, as I know there’s some grassy bottom, but I read our cruising guide later that day and it did mention to use caution when anchoring in that area.
I’m curious to know how deadman’s beach is looking now, that was my favorite stop of my trip! Perfect beach!
Posted By: rhans

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/11/2018 11:57 PM

Great Harbor on the ENE side has offered a good nights sleep anchoring on the drop with weather out of the North and West if you have enough chain to drop in 60' and settle back to a little less than 20'. Puts the stern in some pretty good snorkeling if you swim the short distance towards shore.
Posted By: GlennA

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/12/2018 12:48 PM

Deadman is very poor holding. Mostly grass over loose sand. Great harbor has balls and with the Wily T evicted by then probaby no problem finding a ball
Posted By: warren460

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/12/2018 12:53 PM

Did you back down on your anchor to test it for a strong breeze?
Posted By: SonOfTheSea

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/12/2018 02:15 PM

Yes we did check it to make sure we had a good hold. It seemed fine and we were okay from the time we got there early afternoon until around 3am. The storm wasn’t really bad, just enough to send some choppiness into the bay. I think the constant action of the boat up and down combined with grassy/sand mixed bottom was what caused us to come loose. It really sucked having to deal with that at 3am, very dark and raining and very close to other boats. Not a fun way to wake up in the middle of the night! As Glenn said above, Great Harbor might be a good option for you.
Posted By: cwoody

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/12/2018 02:47 PM

Originally Posted by SonOfTheSea
Yes we did check it to make sure we had a good hold.


Did an overnight once at Deadmans on a 50 mono. Found a sandy spot amoungst the grass and dove to make sure we got a good set in the sand. Still did not hold!
Did hold until morning. Got up early for coffee and we had just started to slip. Can you say anchor alarm. yikes
Up anchor and an early start for North Sound that day with breakfast underway.

Posted By: SteveH

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/12/2018 04:48 PM

Many years ago we were staying in one of the beachfront rooms at Peter Island and were awakened one morning by a lot of yelling. Looked out and there was a monohull up on the rocks on the lee shore of Deadman’s, right outside our room. A couple on board - he was running around and yelling for help and she was holding on for dear life. Seemed like they slowly dragged during the storm-free night. I called the PIR front desk and asked them to alert Moorings.
Posted By: JlarsBVI

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/12/2018 05:46 PM

Last January we stayed in Great Harbor and there were plenty of moorings. There were boats coming in right at sunset and still enough mooring balls for them all. Granted, this was before Willy T moved in.
Posted By: CestLaVie

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/12/2018 07:09 PM

Thanks for the updates. Sounds like Great Harbor is a good option, but related question is whether there is any update on the Willy T-assumption is that mooring field may be a bit less crowded if Willy T has indeed moved on. Any locals with insights as to when/where Willy T may be headed?
Posted By: isuee94

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/12/2018 08:22 PM

Not local knowledge, but word is they have to be out of Peter Island by the end of the year. I've been anxiously awaiting an announcement on where they'll be moving to after the first of the year. They've been asked on FB and they've indicated they will be staying in BVI but haven't made any announcements on their new location.
Posted By: windward2c

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/13/2018 03:34 PM

Little Harbour is one of most beautiful anchorages in BVI and one of my favs, but only if it is not crowded. You need to secure a stern line to shore which can be challenging depending upon your crew and the number of other boats already there but you are rewarded with peace and tranquility.
Posted By: sail445

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/13/2018 06:30 PM

I agree Little Harbor doesn’t look like much when passing it but once anchored inside its magical.
Posted By: OceanSong

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/13/2018 08:53 PM

We were in the BVI for three weeks in November. There are lots of mooring balls in Great Harbour, even with lots of folks visiting the Willy T. If Willy is gone by the time of your visit it's hard to imagine a shortage of mooring balls. Depending on conditions, Key Bay can be a very nice anchorage. It's on the western side of Peter Island near Key Point. There are a few coral heads, but clearly visible in good light. Key Bay is also very convenient for the trip back over to Road Town. It's actually closer to Road Town than the Bight on Norman is to Road Town. Only a few boats can anchor there comfortably, but when we've been there we're either alone or had just one other boat in the bay.
Posted By: sunbvi

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/15/2018 12:28 AM

Originally Posted by cwoody

Did an overnight once at Deadmans on a 50 mono. Found a sandy spot amoungst the grass and dove to make sure we got a good set in the sand. Still did not hold!
Did hold until morning. Got up early for coffee and we had just started to slip. Can you say anchor alarm. yikes
Up anchor and an early start for North Sound that day with breakfast underway.

Do you remember the length of your chain and how long you went backwards with how many rpm to "fix" the anchor?
Posted By: GlennA

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/15/2018 02:06 PM

There is a long story behind this but I spent an entire day in the east end of Deadman testing anchors of a Beneteau 505. The boat had an 80 b CQR, we brought down a 50 lb aluminum Spade and borrowed a Bruce and a plow pattern. Wind was a steady 10 to12 knots across the low section of Caby Point. We would drop an anchor on a 6:1 scope, mark the point with a weighted pool noodle, backed down at 2500 RPM, mark where it set with nother noodle. After 30 minutes we measured to see if it dragged. The CQR and the plow both moved an average of 6 feet. The Bruce about half that and the Spade none measured.

We repeated the testing at Mancheneel Bay up near Cistern Point which is notorious for poor holding and got similar results. From that I would rate Deadman at least as poor holding as Cooper Island.
Posted By: sunbvi

Re: Anchoring at Peter Island - 12/15/2018 11:12 PM

Hi Glenn,

that's very interesting. For ourselves we have very good anchor-experiences in Deadman Bay, last time with a Lewmar Delta Anchor (don't remember the weight). I am not sure if this is more comparable to the CQR or to the spade shape?

Beside this we prefer more chain than 6:1. Not sure if this matters (maybe depending on the weight and diameter of the chain and if you add ~1 meter for the freeboard or not).
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