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Old 03-05-2017, 12:54   #1
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BVI's to Curacao in early June - Good Idea?

I'm a Brit completing on a purchase of a 40' Leopard Cat in the BVI's this month (wahey and gulp!) and would like to get south of the Hurricane belt - possibly Curacao - before the season kicks in. The family will be joining the boat end of August so it will be unattended until then so I want to store it somewhere secure (Curaçao Marine?).

My concern is it's an untested boat (by me) on a 4-5 day passage across unfamiliar waters to an unfamiliar destination.. and I haven't even begun sorting a crew yet or even had the safety gear serviced or tested. The boat has no radar (yet). I'm a fairly experienced sailor with a couple of ocean passages under my belt. I have about a two week window to prepare in the BVI's for the passage.

My question is - am I rushing things here or is it a relatively leisurely cruise with not much to worry about?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated from people familiar with the areas in question, the route and/or conditions. Pointers in the direction of any resources would be very helpful too.

Ta!

Woody and Renx
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Old 03-05-2017, 13:06   #2
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pirate Re: BVI's to Curacao in early June - Good Idea?

Basically you've a beam to broad reach for under 500nm which you should be able to do in 3-4days on your boat..
I'd not over think it.. just bring her to coastal cruising standard re safety etc and go..
I would suggest however that you spend 12-16hrs heading East to St Martin and do your upgrades there.. much cheaper and waiting times for work less as most will have sailed for Europe and parts North and South..
The distance from there to Curacao is barely much different.
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Old 03-05-2017, 13:11   #3
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Re: BVI's to Curacao in early June - Good Idea?

I am a Brit who spent 6 years in those waters. The trip south to the ABC's is usually an easy reach. Bonaire is the best place for family stuff and has a good marina, Harbour Village, and we have left the boat unattended there. We shipped parts in from Miami including 5 big batteries at a reasonable rate. The local mechanic, Lex, is also Raymarine certified

Curacao marine is a good plane to leave the boat in hurricane season and I know three Brit boats that do that. It is very industrial but as safe as anywhere in the Caribbean. They have good workers but parts are St Martin + 20-30%. I got good work done there.

Aruba is not a good place to get work done. Cartagena has outstanding workers but parts can be a problem.
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Old 04-05-2017, 15:06   #4
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Re: BVI's to Curacao in early June - Good Idea?

^^^^ I agree with Bonaire but the price is substantially higher.

I will head for Curaçao in June for the "season" after some good days in the Grenadines and some diving in Bonaire.

Curaçao Marine responded well to my safety/security concerns; they have 24/7 videos, night guards with chest cam video gear streamed live.. so the safety issues of the past are now gone. See you in CUR
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Old 04-06-2017, 00:59   #5
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Re: BVI's to Curacao in early June - Good Idea?

Hi Woody

We did almost this trip in May, from the USVI to Curaco.
We had quite windy weather and biggish seas, but was otherwise straight forward. Wait for a weather window (Chris Parker?) and you should get a beam reach or wind abaft the beam. We are a monohull so you will be quicker.
Curacao is straight forward, we went to Spanish water on arrival. The entrance is narrow with a reef on the port side and shallow water on the starboard. Plenty of anchoring room inside but was quite windy. You need a bus to town.

The marina/yard is through the bridges at Willemsted and then on starboard around the corner. Watch out for the reef immediately before the yard. There are three buoys in a row, but quite small. You must pass with them on your starboard side.
The marina and yard seem good and we have left our boat there till the end of november.
If you need any more info please ask

Kind regares
Brian
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Old 04-06-2017, 01:01   #6
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Re: BVI's to Curacao in early June - Good Idea?

See my longer post below.
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Old 04-06-2017, 04:27   #7
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Re: BVI's to Curacao in early June - Good Idea?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Brian.
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