23
Oct
09

1997 – Bahamas – Venezuela

We left George Town on the 9th January for St Maarten, and anchored in Simpson Bay.   Once again we saw water in the engine and in the oil so  Dave started stripping the engine, and had to take the engine out. Needed new rings, gasket set and engine mountings, and new batteries.

St Maarten

 Dave fitted everything back again and Pat and Collin came over to help lower the engine back onto the mountings, then Dave spent the weekend fitting the rest of the parts, and also installed an Anti-siphon hose, and fitted a new impeller    Dave bought 2 Deep cycle batteries for the engine starting, and 2 Golf Cart batteries for the lights etc.  We had a few farewells with friends and on the 25th June we left St Maarten for ‘Statia,  over-night there, then to St Kitts and anchored in White House Bay for the night,  then to Montserrat and anchored in Old Road Bay.   The Volcano was still active and William from customs came on board and warned us, should we smell sulphur or hear a rumble and sirens, to leave immediately.  Lovely anchorage and we left the following morning for Guadeloupe, we were out about 2 hrs when the Volcano erupted again, and the island was covered in a haze of ash.  We couldn’t make Guadeloupe, and the cable on the helm quadrant came off, so we dropped the sails and Dave got the cable back in position, and decided to head for Bequia.  The early hours of the morning, the quadrant cable came off again, the key was worn and Dave reset it.  During the afternoon, I couldn’t hold the helm, and Dave tried to hold the boat off the wind, we heard this crash below, and no helm, the pulley on the quadrant was ripped out the side with a chunk of fibre-glass, so had to use the emergency tiller.    026  Pulley on Steering Ripped out - Sailing to Bequia

Still had 50 miles to go to Bequia and it was very hard using a tiller, so we jury rigged and used the winches and reduced sail.

Once again we anchored in Port Elizabeth Bay, and Dave went ashore to buy fibre-glass etc, to do the repairs.  Sheena wasn’t allowed ashore so she just swam off the yacht.

 Stayed here a week, and left on the 6th July for Canouan Island,  then sailed past Mayreau Island, Union, Palm island to Petit St Vincent, a privately owned island.   Lovely beaches, and we walked to the North side and Dave snorkeled and got 3 conch and 3 small fish for Sheena.

We then sailed to  Carriacou,  Tyrrell Bay for 3 days and then to Granada and anchored in Prickly Bay.  ‘Kamytoo’ and a few other yachts we knew were in Mt Hartman Bay.  A Group of 10 yachties hired a taxi to go to Grand Etang and do a day hike.

Very wet- muddy- Hike

We hiked up to Mt Qwa Qwa,  very muddy and slippery and ended back at the Lake  for a wash, as we all looked quite a muddy mess.

 

 

Mud-  And slippery

A Great Day – Hike- & Group

We stayed in Grenada for a month, a lovely island.  A group of us went to the 1st night of the Carnival, and on Monday 11th August we left Granada for Margarita, a constant 15 knot wind and had a wonderful sail, and motored the last 20 miles to Margarita and anchored off Porlamar.

Porlamar Beach Restaurant- Eric, Ellen & Dave

Stocked up on all the good stuff and left for Cubagua,  then to Mochima for 2 days, and back to Puerto La Cruz anchorage for a few days and then to Aqua Vi Marina.

We only just made it back to the marina, as the drive shaft coupling; 3 pins had broken off and the rubber washers had disintegrated again.  Friends returned from Holland with a new cutlass bearing and rubber washers.  Now done 18,000 miles.

We went with ‘Vula’ to La Borracha Island, 6 miles away for 4 lovely days.

 

We decided to go to Trinidad over the season  (Insane idea) Trinidad lies East of Venezuela and the wind direction is East North East.  On the 12th December we left the Marina and went to anchor off Paseo Colon, Dave serviced the winches, and we left on the 14th and motored to El Oculto for  2 nights.   Our next stops were Cubagua and Margarita Island, then  Trinidad, beat our brains out,  took 3 days to get to San Francisco Bay.  We had a wonderful sail to the Gulf of Paria, to Peakes Marina.

Arrived in Trinidad on the 22nd December and went to Port O Spain and bought oil filters, fan belts, material to re‑cover our bunk, and stocked up on foods we could’nt get in Venezuela.  Dave fitted the new filters, then the electric fuel pump wouldn’t work, so he had to rush to town and buy a new pump,  and on Christmas Day we left for San Francisco bay, stayed overnight, and sailed to Los Testigos  and anchored in Playa Real, lovely beaches, and the water was emerald green, and stayed 2 days, then moved to another anchorage, Tamarindo Bay, beautiful, long palm beach, and walked up the sand dunes.

 Dave got 3 Crayfish and went line fishing a couple of times, so we had plenty of fish, and of course Sheena was very happy with all the fish, and  spent 5 wonderful, peaceful days there, then left for Margarita.

 In Margarita we went to our favorite beach restaurant for calamari, stayed 1 day, then sailed  to the West coast of Margarita, a great sail,  and stayed overnight, then left for Puerto La Cruz.

Margarita

Puerto La Cruz - Anchorage

  Sheena Enjoying the sea time!!!

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