On our first visit to St. Lucia we surprised the staff at the charter base staff when we announced our plan to sail north to Martinique, not south to the Grenadines. We had several reasons for this plan: we'd been to the Grenadines two years before; we couldn't see how to sail there and back with enough time for snorkeling, not to mention sleeping; we wanted to visit Martinique.
With regard to sleep, we might just as well have sailed south--in almost every anchorage we rocked and rolled all night. Midway through the week, having been to Martinique and back, we found ourselves near the charter base in Marigot Bay. Much as we hated returning to base mid-trip, two of our three boats elected to take slips for the night just to be assured of a good sleep.
Recharged, we went to the anchorage between the Pitons for our last two sleepless nights. Here the rolling was enhanced by the big metal mooring balls striking the hull. Nothing we did would stop it. If we let out more line, the boat drifted on top of the ball anyway. If we pulled it as tight as we could, nearly suspending the heavy ball off our bows, the banging subsided but didn't stop.
Boat boys sold some of our group on the idea of hiking the Gros Piton. They set out early with sandwiches and water. The ascent took about four hours and was mostly up muddy climbing trails. Another group signed on for a tour of the local waterfall and sulpher springs, returning with muddy, smelly bathing suits.
Somehow everyone mustered the energy for a last night blow out toga party, complete with pitcher after pitcher of rum punch, boom-dancing, and skinny dipping. Ahhh the wonderous effects of sleep deprivation!
Saturday: Marigot Bay to Rodney Bay, St. Lucia
Sunday: Rodney Bay to St. Anne, Martinique
Monday: St. Anne to Anse Mitan
Tuesday: Lay Day Anse Mitan (to Fort de France)
Wednesday: Anse Mitan to Marigot Bay, St. Lucia
Thursday: Marigot Bay to Anse Chastanet
to The Pitons
Friday: Lay Day, the Pitons
Saturday: The Pitons to Marigot Bay
Between the Pitons, a deep, sheltered
anchorage and an exclusive resort
Fred takes command for
the last sail of the trip.
Lewis and Gay visit the
Fort de France library
Proud hikers after conquering
the Gros Piton's muddy slopes
Copyright © 2001 Mia's Mar Vista News