To mark the next chapter in our sailing adventure, we’ve created a new blog category, “The Delivery”. See – we are no longer cruising; we are delivering.
Over the next week or so, we’ll sail Free Range to her new home, Antigua, and deliver her into the hands of her new owners (whom we like very much and who we are very sure will take excellent care of Free Range). So, instead of wandering aimlessly about, we have a goal; a new mission – and it feels good!
To get Free Range safely to Antigua, we’ve broken down the journey into four passages:
- St. Thomas, USVIs > Virgin Gorda, BVIs (35 nautical miles)
- Virgin Gorda > Anguilla (75 nautical miles)
- Anguilla > Nevis (80 nautical miles)
- Nevis > Antigua (40 nautical miles)
The one we are dreading the most is the one we’ll do next: Virgin Gorda > Anguilla. It’s called the Anegada Passage (aka “oh-my-god-a” passage). Because of the direction that we need to go, we’ll be fighting the Trade Winds and a 1.5 knot current the entire way.
This morning as Chris Parker delivered the weather over the SSB radio, he told his audience that the “least bad” day to cross the Anegada Passage will be Saturday night into Sunday.
Words like “least bad” do not leave you with a warm and fuzzy: it’s going to be a rough ride.
We’re preparing for it as best we can: switching out the genoa for the yankee (smaller headsail, better for bigger winds); we’ll reef the mainsail from the onset (this means we make the mainsail smaller – its good to do this in strong winds so the wind has less sail area to push against); take extra special care to secure everything in its place down below; prep food – sandwiches; soup in a thermos (the worst thing in the world is trying to make food down below in bad weather).
And we’ve both agreed that if we get out there and things are BAD, we will turn around and wait it out in Virgin Gorda for a better weather window.
But, for now, it’s looking “good enough” to give the crossing a go.