Friday, March 18, 2011

Sailing in the Atlantic to Virgin Gorda

Having lunch at Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour
After leaving Cane Garden Bay, Tortola, the shortest route to Virgin Gorda is to sail east on the Atlantic side of Tortola. It is about a 25 mile run to get to Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbor. And this approach involves a lot of tacking as you are always sailing into to wind. Later we learned that most charter companies suggest their sailors go the opposite way around Tortola to be able to sail with the wind on the Atlantic side. I guess we never considered that route since we like to go to Jost Van Dyke first and that puts us on the north side of Tortola. Next time we will reverse our route.

The run up to Virgin Gorda on the Atlantic side is great sailing, but the winds are stiff and waves high. It makes for a long, fast sail. Larry and Joan did not have any trouble with it, but my sister couldn't handle it. She wears the wrist band with the electric zapper on the Great Lakes and the 20-25 knot winds and high seas were too much it. So for their trip we cut in between Great and Little Camanoe Islands, around Marina Cay and then across to Virgin Gorda. It got her out of the rough waters.

The Baths, Virgin Gorda, BVI

Of course, the biggest attraction on Virgin Gorda is The Baths, but we also learned that a Detroit area developer is working on a resort project at Dix Bay, just over the hill from the Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour. There are several other areas to explore, including the Bitter End Yacht Club area at the north end and Leverick Bay. We did not make it to either this time - hopefully next trip.

With Vicki and Larry, we had a wonderful dinner at Chez Bamboo. There is a nice grocery store at the Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour so it was great to see some good looking meat and vegetables for a change. We used our time here to rest, relax and read. It is good to have a do-nothing-day after a long sail.

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