I departed my anchorage in good time to sail to the Dutch side and arrive with about 20 minutes to spare before the bridge opening. I had a good sail in the lee of the island past Marigot, and when I rounded the headland and started my first beat offshore I realized that the wind was stronger than I expected so I reefed a bit in order to make the ride more comfortable and slow myself down. Unfortunately, about 4 miles out a squall passed through and changed the wind direction so that I wouldn't make the opening unless I fired up the engine! But I made it to the bridge with about 5 minutes to spare and was greeted by Mark, Deborah and Paul from the viewing platform at the St. Martin Yacht Club. The anchorage in front of Palapa Marina was somewhat more empty than the year before and I found a spot with 20 feet depth to drop my hook. By the time I'd let out my scope and snubber I'd drifted back towards the shallow area and only had about 2 feet beneath my keel and about 1-2 feet under the rudder (I made a lead-line which I dropped off the back of the swim platform). This was the lowest depth measured, most of the swing I had quite a bit more depth under the boat so I stayed where I was and didn't try to re-anchor. Mark came aboard and we chatted for a while until it was time to head to the customs and immigration office after their break. Once officially cleared in I settled down aboard and met Deborah, Paul and Mark for happy-hour at the 17:00 final bridge opening.

Deborah and Paul Miller Regattaguru crew relaxing before the Heineken Regatta stress
(2016-02-28 17:04:39 NIKON D7100 with a "35.0 mm f/1.8" lens. [f/5.6, 1/640s] ISO 100)
Deborah and Paul Miller
Prediction Megayacht The megayacht "Prediction" entering Simpson Bay through the drawbridge
(2016-02-28 17:02:48 NIKON D7100 with a "35.0 mm f/1.8" lens. [f/5.6, 1/250s] ISO 100)
Prediction Megayacht
Prediction Megayacht The megayacht "Prediction" entering Simpson Bay through the drawbridge
(2016-02-28 17:02:38 NIKON D7100 with a "35.0 mm f/1.8" lens. [f/5.6, 1/250s] ISO 100)
Prediction Megayacht
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