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20 Jan
Willemstad

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Saturday 20 January
Willemstad, Curacao

Salhelm1 small.jpg (7029 bytes)First Mate Sally Anderson sends us her  WebLog report:

Here are NEW pictures - thanks to John Holmes c/o Alan Murphy:

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The Last Day is upon us again. We only have 8 Voyage Crew departing us here, but packing bags, signing off and swapping e-mails and addresses still dominates our morning. Finding a lone ranger on the wharf to take the group photos with 30 odd cameras is always amusing. Back in time to the 17th of January. Los Roques was a treat for all. It reminded me of the Abrolhos Islands 30nm off the central Western Australian coast. Low lying, dry and desolate, but beautiful. The Island group is a National Park. After clearing in at El Grande Roque we made way for Noronqui Island about 6nm to the west of El Grande Roque. Noronqui is actually an archipeligo consisting of three islands. The snorkelling and swimming was gorgeous and bird life interesting. We were all fascinated watching the pelicans plunging into the water at break neck speed for their next meal.

There is also a wreck of a World War II Landing Ship Infantry. All aboard by sunset and underway for Bonaire. I am besotted with the Trade Winds, may they blow forever!! The battle of working to windward, which can be very challenging and satisfying, seems like a lost memory. The Trades blew a little stronger overnight, up to Force 5, and under the squares we once again had a superb sail west. Bonaire, the first of the A B C islands and part of the Netherlands Antilles. These islands where originally settled in the 16th Century by the Dutch. The Spanish and the Portuguese, attempting to bring the Dutch to their knees, cut off their salt supply. Without salt to preserve their fish, the fleets of Holland would have collapsed, so the Dutch ventured into the New World and settled at the A B C Islands. The town of Kralendijk is picturesque, clean and charming. The buildings are all of the Traditional dutch style. I love the colours. We anchored off Kralendijk at noon on the 18th. After clearing in we were allowed alongside as well. Must away, our shipmates are about to leave us.

Wednesday 17January 2001
Los Rochques

Hi WebLog
Last log we left Eye & anchored Tobago
Cays.

3rd January.  Dropped both anchors & as Sods Law goes upon weighing anchor we of course find the chains crossed. Ho Hum. Eventually enjoyed a relaxing sail to Union Island via north of Mayreau. Anchored Clifton, at the SE end of Island.
Colin (the captain) goes ashore to clear the ship out of St.Vincent & Grenadines, VC master the Tarzan rope swing from the course yard. From here on, excluding Petit St.Vincent, the Windward Islands are part of Grenada. Anchored overnight at Palm Island, a small resort Island.

4th Hope skip & jump to Petits. Day spent exploring Petit M & snorkelling off Petit St.Vincent.
Local Caribbean band came aboard in the evening playing local folk reggae music. Stir it up!
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5th Another splendid sail today to Carriacou. Well it just gets better. Carriacou is absolutely charming & well off the beaten track but there was some obvious damage from Hurricane Lennie last wet. Delightful town is Hillsborough on NW coast.
All ashore for more exploring. Local bus rides are crazy. Bus' are 12 seater vans often with about 24 pax! tearing along the country side at a great rate of knots. View from the hospital is amazing, it is situated on Hospital Hill, 500 ft up & isolated due to a malaria outbreak at the turn of the last century. Further on views extended as far to the north as Mustique.
Visit Winward on to Eastern side, Carriacou’s boat building capital. Schooners are hand built by the beach from white cedar. It was all begun years ago by a Glaswegian shipwright. Hence Scottish heritage here & people are lighter skinned. Snorkelling here also very good.

6th   Compromised on an overnight sail and opted for a crack of dawn departure. Sunrise at sea for a change. Set full sail. Lost wind around lunchtime when we got in the lee of the land. Anchored off St Georges mid arvo next to ‘Eye of the Wind’. Nice to see them again. Before dusk we Mediterranean moored in Carenage. A great site & plenty of dockside activity. St Georges is lovely, standing on a near land locked harbour surrounded by green hazy hills. Lots pale coloured terraced houses. Town straddles a promontory, so many steep hills, steps & sharp bends. Mix of English & French colonial culture. Delightful evening here before VC depart

Sunday 7th.   Maintenance, Time off & catching up with Eye consumed the next few days.
9th Eye departs. Sad day, been fantastic sailing in company with Eye. The two ships have a lot of history together & we won’t see them again for a long time. Fair winds!!

10th   Now VC join full of vim & vigour. Terri, the ship’s multi talented purser, develops a rapore with the staff at the Venezuelan Embassy, eventually acquiring visas for their Islands. Meantime the ship visits Prickly Bay on south coast before returning to St Georges to pick up Terri & visas.
12th  Sail straight for Margarita arriving for lunch

13th.   A contrast to the Grenadines with such an obvious Spanish feel. Anchored entry port Pampatar (Eastern side). More paper work. Ship must receive a cruising permit here, but office opens Mondy15th...V&PC ashore. Recent building boom produces many Las Vegas style hotels. But many forts still standing from 16th C. built by the Spanish to defend pearl fisheries. The oyster beds disappeared by the19thC. (Margarita means pearl in ancient Greek – you probably knew that). The island is 35 miles long, and dry with mountains at both ends. Many National Parks with pelicans & flamingos. Locals are very friendly. Finally underway Monday afternoon.

15th. Running with the trades we make for Los Rocks. Dolphins entertain us for hours after dinner with phosphorescence.

Jima-Terri.jpg (12723 bytes)16th   Great sailing, making 8 kts at times. All happy to be sailing again. Sail talks on the foredeck.
17th Midnight,   All hands on deck! Hand sail & anchor Los Roques. In the morning Capt Colin goes ashore to clear with the authorities.

Jim(a) our Bosun gets a filling from VC John (who is a NZ Dentist) then Jima lectures us all on how
to clean teeth properly! Colin back from ashore, all OK.

Our plan is to motor 5nm to Noronqui (in Los Roques) for an afternoon of swimming & snorkelling before heading for the Dutch Antilles and the island of Bonaire.

++ Ends Sally.


Tuesday 16th January 2001
Margarita
Soren Larsen sailed from St. Georges, Grenada on Friday having got our documentation in order. We arrived at the Venezuelan island of Margarita and had the weekend of there - getting our paperwork in order for visiting the islands of the Marine Reserve of Los Rochas. This was all OK although it was a bit of a frustrating excerise..
Sailed 2100.

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Wednesday 10th January 2001
Prickly Bay, Grenada

Our new Voyage Crew joined the ship today and we have sailed round the south west corner of the island to Prickly Bay, a sheltered pleasant anchorage on the southern side. Purser Terri has stayed in St Georges to sort out our visas for Venezuela. The plan is to explore here for a couple of nights and then clear customs back in St Georges before sailing south towards the Venezuelan island of Margarita.

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For the Voyage Log from the  Cape Finestere to Madeira click here

See more pictures of Soren Larsen's spectacular departure from Charlestown here.

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VOYAGE CREW RETURNING HOME:  Scan and email or post your pictures of your voyage! If you have an account of your trip or a special moment then let us a know. Your tales can be included in the Voyage Log!

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Contact our Auckland HQ:
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6 Grenadines
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Leaving Charlestown Harbour
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ReRigging Topmast
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UK Refit 1:
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