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Old 17-04-2015, 07:22   #1
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Hurricane season in the VIs?

Hey Cruisers!

I'm currently tied up at Browns Marina in Bimini Bahamas with plans on continuing East and South to the Turks, DR, Virgin Islands, etc over the next few months. Unfortunately, hurricane season in June/July is fast approaching and we've got to be prepared for it.

I know the Virgin Islands aren't exactly ideal for hurricane season, so I'm looking for advice on where I should hole up during a storm. Something tells me St. Thomas doesn't have much protection... what about Luperon (sp?) In the DR? or should I toss the plan altogether and head back to Florida in July from wherever I end up.

Your thoughts? I really appreciate any advice!

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Old 17-04-2015, 08:01   #2
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

There is always space here in the BVI in the summer, plenty of hurricane holes and mangroves if you have a bit of local knowledge, Villa Cay marina in road town has good protection and some of the only insurance rated hurricane slips in the VI's.
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Old 17-04-2015, 08:01   #3
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

I spent the last hurricane season in St Kitts at SKMW yard,
not a fancy place, but only 130NM from VI, very good rates and a lot of available space.
People are really nice but on the Island you can not find much (not even gelcoat for minor repairs) so bring with you anything you might need from VI (anti foul paint ,rollers, making tape, spare parts, ...)
a couple pictures to give you an idea .....
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Old 17-04-2015, 08:12   #4
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by enrigenna View Post
I spent the last hurricane season in St Kitts at SKMW yard,
not a fancy place, but only 130NM from VI, very good rates and a lot of available space.
People are really nice but on the Island you can not find much (not even gelcoat for minor repairs) so bring with you anything you might need from VI (anti foul paint ,rollers, making tape, spare parts, ...)
a couple pictures to give you an idea .....

I helped build the cruise ship dock and town extension years ago. I know the owner of SKMW, Reggie. He did work for the company I worked for before he started SKMW. He is a fine person and a friend. I would recommend a stay there.
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Old 17-04-2015, 08:33   #5
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

I would head for Trinidad. My insurance is void in the VI
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Old 17-04-2015, 08:51   #6
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

We are new (1st season) to the Caribb, and had the same concerns when we arrived from Asia and then the Medd. After talking to several local cruisers, both power boat and sailors, all of whom said they routinely "summer over" in the VI, a couple of places kept coming up. The marina in Virgin Gorda and in Nanny Cay (Tortola) in the BVI, and Puerto Del Rey in Puerto Rico were the most mentioned. We looked around, talked to these (and other) marinas, and right now we're sitting in Puerto Del Rey just waiting to be hauled out. We checked with our insurance, and for a modest added premium our plan to stay here in Puerto Del Rey was accepted and approved-$300 added vs our initial plan to go south to Trinidad. Hope that helps.
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Old 17-04-2015, 08:58   #7
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

i was on the edge of a late hurricane in Bermuda in about 2000. Hurricane holes are no refuge, as far as I am concerned. I was awake for 48 hours, wind was about 60 knots plus and I was afraid of dragging in the night. Moving a boat at night in high winds is not a job i am interested in. I was in the VI for a bad storm...winds about 50 knots...i was secure, but there were boats dragging all around me. Since KE = 1/2 mass times velocity squared, i have no interest in ever being in 100 mph winds. I have no intention of being in a hurricane hole during hurricane season.
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Old 17-04-2015, 09:12   #8
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

last year, due to changes in the owner's plans, we find ourselves in VI without previous planning, and before finding SKMW in st Kitts, we tried Puerto del Rey and all the marinas in VI and St Maarten but they were all booked for the hurricane season since the year before..
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Old 17-04-2015, 10:48   #9
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

Hurricanes tradition start forming in the August to September time frame, so maybe you could time it to be in a protected location, given you have a 1970 boat not sure if you have insurance, many cruisers do without, sometimes to loosen constraints you need to gamble (or careless).
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Old 18-04-2015, 06:29   #10
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

Luperon in the DR. is a Great Hurricane hole.... Are you planning on being on you boat the whole time? Other than that they have been known to steal stuff of of boats sitting there...And Puerto Del Rey as mentioned does lots of haulouts for hurricane season.. They have a Great tiedown system.. I see lots of cats in there though.. I do not think they are full now.... Maybe down in St. Kitts...
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Old 18-04-2015, 07:02   #11
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

We spent hurricane season in the BVI's. We discussed our preparation and storm plans with our insurance company who then agreed to cover us in full - they wanted to make sure we were prepared. On a few occasions we had to run for shelter - sometimes into Tortolla and sometimes Nanny Cay. Many cats head for Paraquita Bay - a mangrove. Go to the Moorings base and speak with the guys there as they take their yachts in mass into that mangrove. We actually helped them move their yachts up into there and also in the preparation work. In Nanny Cay - you may have tied down well, but we found many others were not concerned and management was not enforcing the situation, so we did not feel safe there. Perhaps things have changed now?

Impi: HURRICANE STORM YACHT PREPARATION ... boat remaining in the water

Impi: Storm Isaac creates havoc in Road Harbour, Tortola
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Old 27-04-2015, 05:48   #12
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Re: Hurricane season in the VIs?

Vieques has a good Hurricane Hole, as stated Puerto Del Ray has Hurricane storage on land if you want to haul out. In St Thomas my insurance company will cover me with a hurricane plan at Independent Boatyard in the water. Additional lines etc.
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