British Virgin Islands

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23 February to 11 March

We left St Martin on 22 Feb at 11h45 local, and anchored at Dog Island, part of Anguilla at 14h55. We spent the afternoon there and had supper. After squaring away the boat we weighed at 19h55 and set course to the British Virgin Islands overnight. We arrived before dawn and slowed our progress to make the entry through an unknown channel. It was easy to spot as all the St. Martin bound boats were up at dawn and making their respective way out of the channel. After the clearing in process we set about finding a nice anchorage (Just to the West of Eustatia Island) and got on with the business of snorkelling. One of the first things Laura saw and photographed was this Spotted Eagle Ray (Aetobatus narinari) with its ever present Remora (Remora remora) hitching a ride.

One of Laura's favourite fishies, the Porcupine fish (Diodon hystrix)

The outer edge of the reef near Eustatia Island in the channel that separates it from Sir Richard Branson's Neckar Island was very healthy. Here a shoal of Blue Tang (Acanthurus coeruleus), amongst others, live.

Our next anchorage was Savanna Bay, it was incredibly rolly overnight after a calm afternoon, however, the new measure of suitability of anchorages, WiFi, rates this anchorage quite highly! :)

Laura and I went for a snorkel she took this on the way back to Gilana.

Savanah Bay, where a development site meeting was underway, one of the delegates landed his Eurocopter on the beach.

Three views of a Smooth Trunkfish, (Lactophrys triqueter) another of Lauras favourites.

Barred Hamlet (Hypoplectrus puella)

Healthy reef, no bleaching.

Nearly healthy reef with some stress showing.

Juvenile Three Spotted Damselfish, (Stegastes planifrons)

Spotted Moray (Gymnothorax moringa)

While we were anchored in Great Harbour, Peter Island, we found the snorkelling superb. There was a nursery area here with lots of juveniles in the protected shallows. Millions of them...

Stephen and Natasha had been our guests aboard since St Martin. They had found a boat for sale here in the BVI's. It is a Beneteau Cyclades. They were at the point of putting in an offer, so Laura suggested that they leave us and stay in Road Town to finalize the deal. It would work out cheaper than flying back from Panama etc. So we left the BVI's on 11 March at 10h45 for Bonaire, a 3 day sail away. We have never seen so many charter boats.

Heading Southwest, we passed the lee of St Croix, and found this cruiseliner coming directly toward us despite having his destination set as St Martin. Then we realised, his apparently strange course was to get out of the 3 mile limit of the USA so that they could open the ca$ino