we have had marvelous sailing vacations in the BVI,,,,for over 32 years' Next two week trip ( # 15 ) will be in May 2017.
As to the islands themselves and the people that we have met, it has been outstanding.
We have bareboated with the moorings, sun sail, sun yachts, and last year conch charters.
We sail monohulls and in may have had great winds 15 to 24, Double reefed, jib
rolled in to a 100 to 125 % lapper'. When sailing downwind for short passages, we rolled out the full jib
, no main such as White Bay to Canegarden or Soppers hole.
used for two weeks circumnavigating the island was 7.2 gallons. The last many years it was just Erica and I, did not use the GPS
, we used coastal navigation
and paper charts
. We noted our pos every 30 minutes to one hour depending on the distances,, . Fewer notations between the Bight on Norman to Leverick Bay, virgin gorda sound. Spirited sails
that we both love. Great photos by Yacht shots, reefed down, bit of a heel, strong winds and sea, and no weather helm
We actually sailed every passage
, with the exception of a 30 minute motor
from Marina Cay to monkey point , guana island...always great snorkeling.
BVI people are on island time, but we bring our own aloha,, and have had great times with them at the many different anchorages
and beach bars. If they are not quick, we understand, and we bring our own good time.
Now, it actually breaks my heart to see what the moorings has turned into, in regard to their boats and their prices. Some of the same for Sunsail, but sunsail's vessels were in better shape. However, the last several years the moorings and sunsail are part of the TUI world wide conglomerate, as is footloose.
The last moorings boat, 35 monohull
, after our boat check out, we do one of our own, Prior to departure I found a large teat near the tack of the main. So I went up and reported it. They said they would send someone down. We,,, the inspector said he would have the sail loft change out the main.
We finished our personal pre check...no body showed.
What had happened, a previous charterer, had reefed incorectly and the rams horn had tore thru the lower part of the main .
I walked up to the sail loft, none of them even knew we had a problem.
I told them we would double reef the main, leave it in, and there would not be any stress on mainsail
tear, and that I had covered it with sail tape. With the strong winds almost daily, the double reef worked perfect.
When we returned, We had written uo 16 squawks. For the return, the moorings sent down a young woman from the office with a clip board and a pen. I explained each problem....her pen would touch the paper and stop. She had no clue as to boat terminology,,,nothing was written down. Last moorings boat for us.
However, we found that the pool bar staff, chart briefer, restaurant staff, and mariner inn staff were great. Also, we did not let any of the problems with the boat detract from our sailing vacation
The next year we went with sunsail, great jeanneau
36 i, but, the following tear, we found their charges have caught with the moorings.
So, we called conch charters, save about $ 1500, for a 36i for two weeks., family
owned, super friendly staff and owners, actually fun personalities, and we had ROCKET..everything was excellent in all categories,,,,
As mentioned we have booked far ahead for BVI trip #15, in may.
The sad thing about the moorings was seeing the changes from when the Carries who started the charter biz in the BVI, and how great it was, being sold to the TUI corporation. All those wonderful moorings memories are still in our hearts.....but things change.
The moorings was our first international bareboat
experience...that morphed into, the windwards and grenadines, the french west indies, the abacos, bahamas
Positive side, is that we absolutely love sailing the BVI and will continue to do so, and finding new anchorages
and islands , people and beach bars.
With boats, even if your own your own, stuff happens, hopefully those things can be kept top a minimum, or overcome.