Friday, May 14, 2010

The winds howled through the bay in the morning and when we departed for Gustavia we felt the heavy Atlantic swell. At Gustavia we wanted to get rid of our garbage and get some provisions (cheeses and bread) for the crossing to Antigua and arrange the trip so that we were to arrive in English Harbour after dark. It took us a lot longer to get going than I expected and I read in the day's weather report at the Capitainerie that today was Beaufort 5-6 and tomorrow would be 4-5 so we decided to spend one more day in St. Barths before hopping across the 100+ mile leg to Antigua.
On the way in we noticed two more TRANSAT boats coming around the headland and as they had an entourage we assumed (correctly) that they were the last entries coming in. The were incredibly fast and we were barely at the anchorage at Gustavia in time to greet them as they entered. The French certainly treat their sailors as heroes and they had a fitting welcome home. On the down side of the race, we put out a long scope on our dinghy at the dinghy dock and our engine cowling put marks on the hull of the race boat next to it and we found a sign on our engine, the red safety key removed and an somewhat irate sailor upon our return. He wanted us to clean up the damage and we headed out to Zanshin I to get our implements of cleaning (Acetone, denatured alcohol, rubbing compound, gel coat wax) and made short order of our cleanup.
Upon return to Colombier we went snorkeling and I was finally able to work up the courage to take my ostensibly waterproof new camera into the water. Fortunately, it was a waterproof as the manufacturer's claims and I've attached some pictures of the underwater creatures we saw to prove it. Björn saw a shark on the excursion but by the time he was able to draw my attention to it the shark had departed for parts unknown.

TRANSAT stragglers The last 2 raceboats from the Mini TRANSAT arriving safely in Gustavia, St. Barths. They were greeting with a huge welcome, it seemed that the whole island had come to town or gone into the water to greet them.
[17°53'51.3"N 62°51'3.53"W (facing E)]
TRANSAT stragglers
Mini TRANSAT arrival Dousing sails for the last time after finally arriving in St. Barths after racing across the Atlantic ocen with just 2 people aboard.
[17°53'49.61"N 62°51'1.9"W (facing NE)]
Mini TRANSAT arrival
Streets of St. Barths A side street just off the docks at Gustavia in St. Barths. The main drag has very expensive brand name fashion and accoutrements stores, but the prices in the stores on this road aren't much lower.
[17°53'52.62"N 62°50'59.19"W (facing SE)]
Streets of St. Barths
Gustavia Fisherman anchor This old but very solid Fisherman anchor is exhibited in the Gustavia harbour on St. Barths.
[17°53'44.48"N 62°50'55.63"W ]
Gustavia Fisherman anchor
Long-term parking Long-term parking
[17°53'51.27"N 62°51'8.27"W ]
Long-term parking
Scuffing up a raceboat I had tied my dinghy too close to this raceboat and had left scuff marks on the hull, as the irate owner had no hesitation in pointing out to me. I went back to Zanshin I and got my cleaning materials and got rid of all the evidence.
[17°53'52.97"N 62°51'0.56"W ]
Scuffing up a raceboat
Cleaned up raceboat I had tied my dinghy too close to this raceboat and had left scuff marks on the hull, as the irate owner had no hesitation in pointing out to me. I went back to Zanshin I and got my cleaning materials and got rid of all the evidence.
[17°53'52.97"N 62°51'0.56"W ]
Cleaned up raceboat
Rocks around St. Barths Rocks around St. Barths
Rocks around St. Barths
Duct taped Genoa This temporary repair to the leech (trailing edge) of the Genoa was done with a bit of sail tape (very stick and tough tape) and a lot of cheap quality duct tape that didn't want to adhere to anything. But it was sufficient to prevent the damage to widen and the repair by a pro was quick, easy and cheap. The trick is to have a sewing machine strong enough to pierce the very heavy sailcloth. I had no luck with a big needle and pliers but have heard that one can use a Dremel drill with a small head.
Duct taped Genoa
Turtle under the boat This turtle was under Zanshin and seemed to have no fear of either boats or snorkelers. Smart turtle, consider Colombier is a national Park in St. Barths.
[17°55'28.77"N 62°52'12.89"W ]
Turtle under the boat
Snorkeling at Colombier Snorkeling at Colombier
Snorkeling at Colombier
Snorkeling at Colombier Snorkeling at Colombier
Snorkeling at Colombier
Blue fish and Black Sea Urchin Blue fish hiding the spines of a black sea urchin
Blue fish and Black Sea Urchin
Snorkeling at Colombier Snorkeling at Colombier
Snorkeling at Colombier
Moray eel at Columbier A moray peeking out of the rocks seen while snorkeling at Anse Colombier in St. Barths.
Moray eel at Columbier
Colombier Hillside It is a lot steeper than it looks. I climbed all the way to that rocky top with Bjoern on our way to Gustavia on foot - we certainly chose the wrong (and long) route.
[17°55'29.94"N 62°52'12.28"W (facing SE)]
Colombier Hillside

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