When I finally got going on my shakedown cruise which was supposed to be to St. Maarten, I only got as far as St. Vincent. I had electrical
issues that were only partially solved
when my buddy Gary and I left Grenada for Carriacou. The weather forecast
was for the usual 15 to 20 knots NE to E. I know that there are gusts at the northern tips of all of the islands. It was blowing about 30 knots at the tip of Grenada and the seas were sort and confused. On we went. Just past Kick Em Jenny the wind
piped up to over 45 knots. The rest of the trip averaged 35 knots. We ended up doing almost double the rhumb line since the current
took us to the west and we had to tack into Tyrell Bay about 10 miles.
The boat behaved magnificently. We had a double reef and just half of the Genoa
out. To help with pointing I had the lee engine
on at about 1500 RPM
. It made improvements in both our heading and boat speed. There were 2 monohulls out at the same time and both were occasionally rounding up. The next day we just rested because we were so beat up.
The Grenadines were a joy as always, with short sails
between islands. Stayed out on the reef at Tobago
Cays. It is unfortunate that Hurricane
Ivan has damaged the coral
so much, but ther are signs that it is coming back. There was still lots of fish
, turtles, rays etc.
Returning from Blue Lagoon
in St. Vincent to Bequia was another very windy day as well as large rollers. The autopilot
could not cope so I had to steer by hand. This made me appreciate the cable steering
, be cause I got lots of feedback through the wheel
. Its to bad that many cats use hydraulic steering
, you lose so much. Anyways, it was really sporting surfing down the waves at over 14 knots, but I was glad it was less than 10 miles because it was hard work and I really earned my beer
once we anchored.