The Vessel: “Second Wind,” a 46’ Moorings catamaran

The Crew: 10 family members/3 generations
• Jon – Captain (56)
• Amy – First Mate (47)
• Eric – Striker (38)
• Lisa – Quartermaster (39)
• Randy – Ship Master (75)
• Nancy – Cook (72)
• Zach – Rigger (9)
• Ellie – Second Mate (7)
• Colby – Swabbie (5)
• Brady – Cabin Boy (3)

The Big Picture: Last fall, Jon and I won a free trip aboard a 46’ catamaran in Offshore Sailing School’s 50th anniversary contest. And who better to join us on this adventure than a bunch of sailing novices – my parents, sister and brother-in-law, their three kids and our nephew. Despite a couple of bouts of minor seasickness, everyone had an amazing time. In fact, a couple of the kids are already signed up for sailing lessons this summer. Below are some highlights of the trip along with my favorite pictures from our week in the sun.

Day 1 – 3/28
Left Minneapolis in 30 degree weather. Arrived in St. Thomas 8 hours later and 50 degrees warmer. Eased into island time at the Best Western Emerald Beach.

Day 2 – 3/29
Kevin Campbell made my family feel right at home when he picked up our crew at the BWEB and delivered us to the ferry dock. The kids were trying to play it cool, but I know they were excited…

[img][image][/img]IMG_0526 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

After arriving at the Moorings base in Tortola, Jon and I dealt with the chart briefing and checkout process while the rest of the crew unpacked and double-checked our provision delivery. After a hot afternoon at the base, we set out for Marina Cay.

At first, all of the kids wanted to hang out with Uncle Jon at the helm….

[img][image][/img]IMG_2956 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

But the older two quickly realized that the tramps were way more fun…

[Linked Image]IMG_3035 by monty_video, on Flickr

Day 3 – 3/30
Our first “real” sail was from Marina Cay to North Sound. Sadly, this was also our first “real” seasickness experience. My mom put up a good show, but finally lost her cookies a little north of the Dogs.

Everyone felt better once we entered North Sound. We grabbed a mooring ball at Saba Rock and put our water toys in the water.

Lisa and Brady enjoyed my new floatie….

[img][image][/img]P3300140 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

We all headed over to The Sand Box for some swimming off the beach.

And back to the boat for cocktails. Brady tried to join in on the action…

[img][image][/img]IMG_2927 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

We wrapped up the day with happy hour and dinner ashore at Saba Rock. The kids loved the tarpon feeding….

[img][image][/img]P3300148 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

[img][image][/img]P3300147 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

Day 4 – 3/31
I woke up to some giggles and whispers. Surprise! The kids woke up early and decorated the salon for my birthday.

We motored from Saba Rock to Leverick Bay where Nick took care of us with a safari truck and slip rental. We all embarked for a day trip on Virgin Gorda. First stop was the Baths…

[img][image][/img]P3310162 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

Then we headed to Savannah Bay for some beach fun in the sun…

[img][image][/img]P3310172 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

My brother-in-law, Eric, gave me the best gift of the day by chauffeuring us up and down the dizzying heights of Virgin Gorda despite his acrophobia.

We ended the day with the Michael Beans “Happy Arrr” show. Much fun was had by all!

[img][image][/img]P3310180 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

[img][image][/img]P3310194 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

Day 5 – 4/1
North Sound to Jost Van Dyke was our longest sail of the week. Traveling downwind was relaxing for everyone…

[img][image][/img]P4030290 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

[img][image][/img]IMG_3047 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

This was also the first opportunity we had to execute a “plan B.” And a “plan C.” We had originally decided to overnight at Diamond Cay but all of the moorings were taken by 2PM. So, we headed over to Great Harbour. Again, all moorings were taken. (Later we found out that we happened to stumble on a regatta). We finally ended up in Little Harbour for the night.

We didn’t let the distance dissuade us from our original objective. So we headed ashore and called a taxi. Next stop – the Bubbly Pool. Sadly, I forgot to pack the bug spray and my parents felt the full affects of the mosquitoes on the trail. But the kids decided it was worth it. The jaccuzi was in full force.

We ended the evening at Foxy’s Taboo – everyone’s favorite meal of the trip. And we have the pics to remember it….

[img][image][/img]IMG_3058 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

[img][image][/img]IMG_3067 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

[img][image][/img]P4010236 by monty_video, on Flickr[/image]

Stay tuned for part 2