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Saturday, 15 April 2017

Trinidad - Carriacou

In the late afternoon of 19/3/17 we left Trinidad for Carriacou (small island North of Grenada). An evening start is recommended to avoid Venezuelan Pirate boats. The latest report was during the recent fishing competition....a sports fisher boat was approached by armed men in a high speed boat. The fishing boat cut his lines and made a run for it and due to its more powerful engines was able to escape back to Trinidad.
We motored along the Northern coast for a hour or so, then headed North again close hauled, as close to the wind as we possibly could and the current pushed us sideways. The night was blustery to start with however calmed down the nearer we got to Grenada. We cleared the windward side with no problems through the oil fields. A look at our chart plotter told us that to have the current in our favour, to sail through the pass between Grenada and Carriacou, we needed to step on it a bit. More sail out and we had a knot and a half faster (7 1/2 knots), we made it! Unfortunately we didn't reach Tyrell Bay before nightfall, arriving at 7:30pm in moonless darkness....not recommended! We cautiously entered the bay, Alison on the bow with a search light. We avoided an anchored tug, a couple of sailboats and anchored as soon as possible in 7 meters of water with 35 meters of chain.
We got a surprise come morning, as our estimate of half a dozen yachts, after counting anchor lights, turned out to be more like 40. We moved closer in the bay in daylight to 5 meter depth for better shelter from swell and shorter dinghy rides ashore.

Artemis in Tyrell Bay

Tyrell Bay

The customs etc is all in one office at Tyrell Bay Marina and the road along the beach shore is lined with shops, bars, restaurants and Scuba Diving businesses. It's a lot quieter here and a real pleasure to swim off the back of Artemis into the clear blue water.
The main town of Hillsborough is a short minibus ride away and although this island is more expensive than we have previously experienced, there is value to be had and a surprising variety of goods.
The anchored boats change daily with charter and private yachts, coming in and out and several cruisers we met in Trinidad have, to our pleasure, paid a visit.
The climate is pretty ideal, being a little cooler with a strong breeze from the land and great solar power as the boats back to westward. The only negative is the lack of rain, to catch at this time of year and so we have had to purchase 40 liters from the Marina.

Alison's finished Grenada flag

Feeding the pig

Lovely walk over the Island 

Miles & Alison, Doug & Kate S/V Casa Tu (we had been snorkeling in the bay behind us)
Alison found our dinghy lock after I dropped it!

An old wreck that didn't make it into Tyrell Bay