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Old 19-10-2006, 14:14   #1
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windward islands

Hi boys and girls. I believe I am the newist member to this site, so I just
thought I would introduce myself.

My wife Eileen and I (Larry) have been sailing about 10 years now. I have to blame her for getting me involved in boating. We spend most of our boating time cruising northern Lake Michigan on our 24 ft Seaward. She is a teacher and I am a pharmacist.

Our next cruise will be in the windward islands. Have 2 weeks beginning December 5th. Our experience outside of Lake Michigan so far has been limited to the BVI, USVI, and the Spanish VI.

Any words of wisdom anyone would like to pass on to me regarding my upcoming adventure?

Lar
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Old 19-10-2006, 14:19   #2
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Aloha Larry,
Welcome aboard!! Wear sunscreen.
Kind Regards,
JohnL
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Old 19-10-2006, 18:54   #3
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Hang on tight. The blue sky and strong trade winds will carry you away. Going south is easier than going north.
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Old 19-10-2006, 19:26   #4
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Prepare Before

Definitely different than BVI/USVI................which islands are you visiting? What size boat? Crew?

In general, more open water, bigger hops 20+nm especially up north, wind compression @ island edges .....sounds like fun to me.

Doyle Cruising Guide & Web Site will be very helpful
http://www.doyleguides.com/aa%20site%20navigator.htm

Also Noonsite for Regulations/Info
http://www.noonsite.com/Countries
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Old 29-10-2006, 07:20   #5
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Thanks for the welcome everyone.
Yes John, I will bring less clothes, more money, and sunscreen.
Looking forward to some good winds Paul. Should be a little more sailing involved than in the BVI.
Mr. Chuteman, I have not decided which islands we will visit yet. I thought I would waiit till my Doyle guidebook arrives before I made any plans. My wife and I will be the only crew. We have chartered a 35' Sun Odyssey in St. Vincent from Sunsail. Will be flying out of Michigan on December 4th. Can't wait. I checked out the 2 websites you gave me. Thank You.

Regarding customs, I believe the only 2 countries I will be checking in and out of are St. Vincent and Grenada. Is this correct?

Lar
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Old 29-10-2006, 07:25   #6
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lar,

Welcome. Check out this site. A fellow member at our club has a charter boat in St. Vincent and has done quite s good job with this site on the windwards. The Usual Suspects - Caribbean Sailing Adventures
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Old 29-10-2006, 07:31   #7
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Between the two are the Grenadines. many small islands that are close together but far far less people. You can find places where you'll be alone. People are generally very nice.

My wife an I go to St Lucia for two weeks a year mid February and we usually will charter a boat for single day sails once or twice. This has to be the best sailing desitnations in the Windwards. 25 knot trade winds with 4 - 6 ft waves and bright sun.
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Old 29-10-2006, 07:48   #8
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As far as customs go St Vincent includes the Grenadines and I wouldn't think you'll want to spend time in Grenada. You gcould take a trip to St Lucia and check in at View Fort. The hurricane from several years back really did very serious damage to the island of Grenada. They are still trying to put things together. It used to be a lovely place. The Grenadines were not seriously damaged at all. With the serveral islands in that group there you'll have your hands full seeing all there is in just two weeks. There would be many anchorages you'll just be happy to spend many days in a row. The distances are not huge.
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Old 29-10-2006, 07:49   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pblais
Going south is easier than going north.
It certainly is. Larry, if your plans haven't been finalized yet, a good plan would be a one way charter from either St. Lucia or St. Vincent with a drop offf at Grenada.
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Old 29-10-2006, 16:57   #10
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Sounds like a Plan

OK, so 2 weeks on a 35', You & your wife starting in St. V.
The Doyle's Guide will certainly help you plan out routes (options offered w/ mileage) and get details on every stop.
Going South from ST V there are a series of islands to explore in the Grenadines & the mileage is not bad at all between each one.
Going North (ie; St. Lucia) is a much bigger hop especially from SW St.V. in a 35' boat.
The nice thing about having two weeks is that You will not be pressured to rush .....you can stay longer than one nite in places you really like which is nice. The local Sunsail staff will be very help in setting up your itinerary especially when you are prepared prior to arriving.
Again, sounds like warm Fun.
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Old 30-10-2006, 20:39   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pblais
As far as customs go St Vincent includes the Grenadines and I wouldn't think you'll want to spend time in Grenada. You gcould take a trip to St Lucia and check in at View Fort. The hurricane from several years back really did very serious damage to the island of Grenada. They are still trying to put things together. It used to be a lovely place. The Grenadines were not seriously damaged at all. With the serveral islands in that group there you'll have your hands full seeing all there is in just two weeks. There would be many anchorages you'll just be happy to spend many days in a row. The distances are not huge.
Well: to be strictly accurate you have two areas. St Vincent and the Northern Grenadines is one country which is from STV down to Union where you would clear out if going to - Grenada which is actually a 3 island group Grenada itself, Cannouan and Petit Martinique.

Slightly off topic - but it was mentioned - I have to totally disagree that Grenada is still "trashed". Sure they lost 90% of their housing stock (mainly the roofs though) and the nutmeg crop wont fully recover for the next 3 years, but with the motto "We're building better and stronger" they are certainly up and running. As an example, they are a host venue next
year for the World Cricket Cup and their brand new stadium will be ready on time and has been assessed by the cricket world authorities as the best in the caribbean and about 3rd best in the world. Cricket attracts huge influxes of fans and actually most of the host islands like St Kitts and Antigua will not have enough accommodation for the expected amounts of visitors. Grenada is in the same boat of course but you can be dam sure that all their hotels will be up and running.

The trouble with living in a hurricane prone zone is that you get complacent when you havent been hit, like Grenada, since 1957 which is probably outside the living memory of a large percentage of the inhabitants.

Take for example 10 or so years ago when Sint Maarten, USVI and BVI were hit by Luis and Marilynn within 10 days of each other. Prior to that the last strike had been many years before by Hugo. And here we get to different island territories' mind-states. Hugo had been a Wake-Up call for BVI which has a major yachting industry and so when L and M came through, we were sending out charter boats within 4 days of the weather. This is because BVI not really liking being a British Colony (woops - not allowed to use that word nowadays - I mean Overseas Territory) and knowing that all the Brit Gov't would do would be to send a gun boat, just rolled up its collective sleeves and got on with the job. USVI meanwhile sat back and wrung its collective hands whilst waiting to be declared a disaster area and then to receive US Gov't funds. Consequently they took a much longer time to recover. St Maarten, which to be fair, was worse hit, certainly by Luis anyway, took many years to recover (some would say that it still hasnt!) Sure, Grenada received massive financial aid, mainly from British Commonwealth countries, but has the independent mind-set and will to roll up its sleeves and get on with re-building.

Back to topic. Yes - you'll love it. Read Doyles Guide, maybe do some pre-planning with Imray Iolaire Charts, enjoy the comprehensive chart and area briefing that you will get from the base staff (Seth at Barefoot Charters, also in Blue Lagoon - gives a fabulous brief!) and as has been mentioned read up Rob's "The Usual Suspects" site. Enjoy!! Tony
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Old 31-10-2006, 03:29   #12
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Actually World Cup Cricket 2007 is April 24th - 29th

Semi finals are in Jamaica and St Lucia and the finals in Barbados. All these countries are in one West Indies team. Grenada will host part of the second stage preliminary games. West Indies people are crazy for Cricket.
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Old 31-10-2006, 05:42   #13
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Yep - and for cricket fans the ICC world cricket web-site has masses of info ranging from the warm up games to accomodation in the islands. I have a group of South Africans who will be living on my boat for the warm-up in St Kitts then I shall take them on a dirty dash down to whichever island SA will be playing on next.....and so on! This will only work (and its gonna be tight anyway) provided SA dont have to play in Jamaica (and of course we can forget Guyana!). Tony
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Old 07-11-2006, 10:26   #14
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Just wanted to thank everyone for the replys. I'll probably have further questions, but will post in the caribbian destination forum. 28 days and I'll be sailing.
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Old 07-11-2006, 20:20   #15
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G'day bvimatelot and thanks for that referance to " IMRAY IOLAIRE" great site and even has charts to view in the coral sea in OZ. Good Stuff

And Icdittmar, I'm sure you'll have fun in your seawind 24. I had one for a few years and she was a great entrance into the world of multihulls, I reckon everyone should have one or similar before getting into the big multis, but that's a separate post.

Have fun, i'm envious

Dave

PS.... Bloody hell, i'm going blind, says seaward 24, not seawind, anyway i'm sure you'll still have a good time, just spill a few more drinks and not go as fast.

Enjoy
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