|Big anchorage, why so close? And look who it is......|
It has been really windy here in Bequia. REALLY! It can funnel through the gap in the hills and scream down into the anchorage. And it keeps blowing. We had two and a half weeks of non-stop wind. Then a short break and then back at it again. Below is some of the fun that has taken place in the anchorage lately. Some of this during the week we had no yacht insurance. Yep, never dull.
|Dragging, tangled cats|
|Putting sv Wind Cat on a mooring after she broke free of her anchor|
|Charter cat - this one is only 50 ft (roll eyes)|
|Too close, no need in such a big anchorage|
I have found something better than Bitch Wings. It is my handy-dandy, new, lightweight and powerful LED spotlight. If I am worried, I hit that a few times starting at sundown, even just to spot on the boat in front of us so I know exactly where they are and how close. If they don't like getting hit with a powerful spotlight a couple of times during the night, they should not have anchored so near and they can move in the morning. I joked with friends that instead of bitch wings, I would stand on deck with a holster. On one side would be my spotlight and on the other, my airhorn. A cruising friend added "Don't forget your cutlass. Put that in the belt of your holster for an added touch." Good idea. Ha! Let's see who anchors near us now if I am up on deck with all that!
|Poor sv Crazy Love|
|Big swell destroying the new part of the Belmont Walkway and Princess Margaret Beach|
Big Swell was predicted. Big swell arrived in Bequia big time! There are basically four areas to anchor in Admiralty Bay; Lower Bay, Princess Margaret Beach, up front on the south side and north side. Lower Bay and Princess Margaret Beach can be rolly at times. This is not uncommon. What was predicted was big swell, all up and down the island chain. We all knew about it for days. Many changed anchorages or even islands, looking for protection. The problem was the direction of the swell. It was supposed to come from the north, northwest, west and possibly even a little southwest. None of these good for the normally well protect anchorages in the lee of these islands. We had already moved up from Princess Margaret Beach weeks ago during the really strong winds. We were now anchored off the Bequia Plantation Hotel - at the start of the up front south side. We thought we would be ok. The day the swell hit, I was up early for some reason. At 6am I looked down at Lower Bay to see a series of HUGE swells breaking way far out from shore in the anchorage. At least 100 yards out from the beach, basically in the back of the anchoring field. I woke Tom up. "You have to come see the swells in Lower Bay." Soon our awe turned to serious concern. It was getting dangerous for the yachts down there and in Princess Margaret Beach. They were all violently rolling in the swell. Many began pulling up anchor and heading to the north side or up front to mooring balls. As more and more swells broke, a mass exodus happened. Most but not all. A few stayed. Then as the day went on, the swell shifted and came towards us. We ended up facing west -so weird. Which put us 90 degrees to our anchor set and much closer to the beach. Luckily, this also put us head on into the swell. Much safer and more comfortable to ride them out head on vs taking the waves on the side of the boat. They were breaking just behind us and occasionally under us. In hindsight, I would have preferred to be one more boat length out from shore. We were a tad close at this angle. The full weight of sv Honey Ryder pulling and tugging at the anchor snubber, chain and anchor. But she held. Everyone stayed on their boats at the ready for whatever. Huge waves crashed all day on the Belmont Walkway, battering dinghy docks and sloshing into restaurants along the shoreline. The new part of the walkway was washed way. The pounding waves eroded must of Princess Margaret Beach. It was an intense, nerve wracking day. Then just as sunset was starting, the swell returned to Lower Bay with a vengeance. The few boats that were left down there were once again in danger. Two or three of them were knocked down rail to rail in the violent rolling. They all but two moved. Those somehow survived. Tom and I decided to sleep in the cockpit just in case. It finally calmed down enough that we went below at 1:30 am to bed. What a day!
Double fire hose for chafe guard on the anchor snubber. This is after two months in Bequia.
It wasn't always terrible in the anchorage. There were many nice days and calm mornings and still nights. I just give you the above examples so you know what it can sometimes be like in an anchorage. We had a wonderful time in Bequia. We stayed two months!