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Old 21-02-2010, 16:42   #1
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Grenadines - Rolly ?

Considering a sail charter in late March in the Grenadines; however I am concerned about how "rolly" the nights might be as I am prone to seasickness but REALLY want to do this. I am aware that the BVI may offer calmer conditions but they charter rates seem to be more reasonable in the Grenadines. All comments appreciated.
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Old 21-02-2010, 16:47   #2
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Think cat.


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Old 21-02-2010, 19:11   #3
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We have chartered in the Grenadines several times at that time of year and I don't remember any rolly nights outside of normal expectations. There will always be weather/geographical combinations that will lead to less than perfect anchorages - Chesapeake or Chile. Can't avoid that. The Grenadines are beautiful and shouldn't be avoided because of seasickness. Try to get sturgeron to help. Can't get it in the US, but it is an over the counter medicine in most countries and you should be able to order it over the internet.

Barnakiel is correct - cats help tremendously with mitigating any rolling.


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Old 21-02-2010, 19:13   #4
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Spent a lot of time in the Grenadines. Favorite place is Bequia. Elizabeth harbor is good, if you tuck up in the head of the harbor. Lots of moorings now, I hear. Friendship Bay is pretty good also. Mustique rolls. Tobago Keys are protected by the reef. Petit St. Vincent is open and could roll a bit. St. Vincent is protected at the southern end, and on the Leward side, there are a few protected ancharages. Mayreau is good, Tyrell Bay in Cariacou is very protected. The sailing is a little more adventerous than the BVI's, a bit of open water, but once in the Lee, it calms down. BVI's are like sailing on Long Island Sound. Late March the winds should be down a bit.
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Old 21-02-2010, 19:16   #5
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There are gorgous, well protected anchorages in the Grenadines. Admiralty Bay (Port Elizabeth) Bequia, Charleston Bay Canouan, Salt Whistle Bay Mayrou (if you tuck up close to the beach) and pretty much anywhere in the Tobago Cays are well protected from North, East and South swells. I'd give Mustique a pass in North swell. There are plenty more but those come to mind... Definately more wind and current that the BVI's.

BVI's can be rolly in North swells. You could easily get tail end Xmas Northerlies in March. Favorites like Cain Garden Bay and White Bay on JostVD can be miserable, even in a cat. The good news is there are plenty of well protected spots to be had, even in peak season with a North swell.

Your charter company will be able to point out the flat spots for the given conditions. Either Country....No worries, go and enjoy.

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Old 22-02-2010, 05:41   #6
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We've spent a lot of time in the Grenadines, too. In anchorages like the Tobago Cays and Clifton Harbour on Union, you're behind a reef and facing into the wind, so any small waves are on the bow = no roll. The only rolling I recall is in Charlestown Bay, Canouan, and Tyrell Bay, Cariacou.

You should "just do it". The Grenadines are a marvelous next step for Virgin Islands charterers.
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Old 06-03-2010, 19:16   #7
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Dont spend the night at Canouan or Mustique and you'll be fine. Someone said Tyrell Bay, Carriacou is rolly, thats nonsense
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Old 07-03-2010, 02:43   #8
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I said it. It was pretty darn rolly when I was there, enough so that a number of boats had stern anchors out to orient their boats to the swells. I would imagine that's a fairly infrequent situation there, as it's a pretty sheltered location.
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Old 07-03-2010, 03:41   #9
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We spent 7 years in Caribbean and visited all the anchorages mentioned, none of them were NEVER rolly depended whether a "wave"was coming through the island chain ie weather pattern. We had an extremely rolly/jerky stay once in the Tobago Cays which is usually flattish water. Could check with Al Gore beforehand 'cause he knows EVERYTHING
The Cays have become "commercialised" with locals from the nearest neighbouring island ( 7 miles ) trying to sell tourists everything with blaring music a constant welcome. Their motorised skiffs will add to your daily roll, nights will be quieter
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Old 09-03-2010, 06:00   #10
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The suggestion to go with a catamaran is very good. Most of the eastern Caribbean Islands have enough wind to keep your boat heading basically eastward while at anchor. However, with a large enough island the waves/swells will "wrap" around the island and come at you from your beam resulting in constant rolling - sometimes very minor - sometimes rather annoying. Catamarans - especially the really wide ones - ride quite stable and flat during most of the time compared to mono-hulls. The only downside to cat's is the "hobby-horsing" they are prone to in moderate seas on the bow between islands. But inside the Grenadines that is rather rare.
- - If you cannot afford a Catamaran, then in some less crowded anchorages you can deploy a stern anchor to "pull" the bow into the swells to convert the rolling into pitching which is easier to take especially when sleeping.
- - Tyrrel Bay in Carriacou is subject to some dramatic swells during certain wind/wave conditions. The docks at the Lazy Turtle have to be removed during these times or they will be smashed. The northern side of the bay near the mangroves is a favorite for those wanting to avoid the rolling and sometimes boats head into the little mangrove swamp itself to get away from the worst of the surge. But more than half the time, the bay is benign and really a very pleasant place. Snorkeling and scuba diving around the little islands to the south is probably the best in the Caribbean so if you are into that stuff don't miss Carriacou.
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