Tuesday, November 13, 2012

What a Passage!

Sunrise over Martinique

What a day for a sail!
When traveling between distant islands, you hope that you’ll get at least some good conditions. Well, we couldn’t have asked for better during our recent passage from Martinique to St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. We left Trois Islet about 1 am and arrived at Christmas Cove about 10 am two and a half days later. Winds ran 10-15 knots, give or take, from our aft starboard quarter, and we had the current behind us. We saw over seven knots sailing, and the seas were never uncomfortable. We kept expecting to pick up a large northerly swell, but it never materialized – the largest seas we had were when we crossed the Martinique and Dominica Passages, and they weren’t bad. While underway, we listened to the audiobook The Mauritius Command, by Patrick O’Brian. This series of books chronicles the adventures of Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin, captain and surgeon, respectively, on British naval ships during the Napoleonic war era. I can’t recommend them highly enough, but make sure you get the version narrated by Patrick Tull. The moon was full during our passage, and rose bright orange from the horizon after sunset. This was especially appropriate for the evening of October 31st, Halloween. Interestingly, every cloud formation that night was fantastic or grotesque, my mind (usually kind of weird anyway) undoubtedly influenced by the holiday.
Rainbow as we approach St. Thomas

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