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Old 17-11-2008, 16:59   #1
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vieques anchoreges

My wife and I will be cruising the Spanish Virgins from December 4th thru the 17th. I just read an article in Sail
magazine that indicated some of the Vieques anchorages may be closed due to clearing of unexploded ordnance.

Can anyone confirm or deny this. If some on the anchorages
cannot be used, which ones?

Thanks for the help and response.


Captain Lar and Eileen

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Old 17-11-2008, 17:17   #2
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Last year we went to Bahia Salina del Sur, and were told we couldn't anchor there or anywhere east of the tower at 65 degrees 19.0 minutes west, and the clearing would take several more years... I think they don't work on weekends, but its still not a place to make sand castles on the beach.

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Old 17-11-2008, 18:20   #3
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The cleanup of ordnance has been ongoing since the Fajardo Naval Base closed several years ago after the farmer was killed from being in the wrong place at the wrong time. There are a couple of good cruising guides that tell you where to anchor. If you can't get to one before your trip then anchor in the harbor of Esparanza and get one ashore. I recall that the banned anchorages are on the southeast side of the island. I found Vieques to be a little less sailor friendly than Culebra. Vieques has a population of about 10,000 and unemployment is high so crime is an issue and the life on shore is a little more city like. Culebra is very quaint and cruiser friendly with a phenomenal harbor, Ensenada Honda. The island has a population of 2500 and it is in my opinion one of the Caribbean's best kept secrets. Take a day trip to the beach at the northwest corner of the island by Taxi to Flemenco Beach. It is a state park and considered one of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean. Don't take your boat close to the beach though because it gets very rough with the breakers coming in from the north. Be a little careful anchoring in Ensenada Honda because of debris in the harbor. We had trouble getting the hook to grab in 15 feet of water with a sandy bottom. When I lifted the hook I found a large sail had wrapped itself around the anchor! Here is my recommendation for cruising guide:
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Old 18-11-2008, 01:54   #4
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I’ve read that Culebra’s Ensenada Honda is one of the better hurricane harbors in the Caribbean (not an issue in December).

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Cruising the Spanish Virgin Islands

Vieques - the Forgotten Virgin

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Old 23-11-2008, 07:52   #5
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Just back from Vieques.......

Spent one night anchored off Esperanza between Cayo de Tierra and Cayo Real. Wind out of the NE but still had to put out a stern anchor to keep us pointed into the swell that was working its way in. The bay has a grass bottom so the holding was not the best. Might try to anchor west of Cayo Real in Puerto Real next time. We were at Esperanza to go to "Bio Bay" (Puerto Mosquito). The bioluminescent at night is a natural wonder that should not be missed. We went in kayaks with "Blue Caribe" dive shop one evening. Also, we spent a night in Ensenada Honda, a large bay with a calm anchorage inside. With the wind in the NE we passed on Bahia Icacos and are looking to go there the next time we are in the area. There are some nice anchorages in Culebra where we are now so think about coming over from Vieques. Stephen Pavlidis has a good guide of the Virgins that includes the Spanish Virgins.
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Old 23-11-2008, 19:16   #6
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Thank you for the responses. We will bypass Bahia Salina, consider Ensenada Honda, and be careful at Esperanza.

We plan on being at Culebra on 12-7. I can taste the rum already.


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