We were again up at the crack of dawn, ready to complete the 45 miles from Jolly Harbour to Charlestown on the Island of Nevis. The departure went well and we experienced a great sunrise. We set up down-wind rig, which had not been used since the Atlantic. All went well but unfortunately both Nita and Carlotta suffered seasickness, Nita more so than Carlotta, which is a shame as it spoils it for them.
We approached Nevis around 16:00 and sailed close to island to take in the stunning scenery. Nevis is shaped very much like a Sombrero with a very dramatic mountain in the middle and flat land surrounding.
We picked up a mooring near to Charlestown and watched the sunset with a beautiful rainbow display to add to atmosphere.
Again we needed to check into the country so first thing in the morning we launched the dinghy for the long ride to the town. Charlestown is lovely compared to other towns we have been too. The people are friendly, dressed well and all smiling. The architecture is unique and the place looks well cared for in comparison to towns in St Lucia and Martinique. We spent the morning walking around and shopping for provisions but as we were destined to anchor on a beach in the North of the island we did not spend much longer there.
We set sail in the evening to Oualie Beach, about 5 miles north of our current anchorage. Now in our lovely pilot book Oualie Beach is meant to be well sheltered if you tuck up nice and close to the beach; that is all very well if you have a rubber dinghy but not with 1.4 meters under the water (thanks Chris Doyle). We could not get close to the beach and therefore were left anchored some distance from any shelter. Carlotta mentioned that the mountain we were looking at was in fact called Windy Mountain and the gap to our port side was called Hurricane Gap pointed it out. Well, the wind blew and blew with gusts reaching 40 knots. Guess what happened next? Yes, our dinghy decided to fly and invert itself with the engine, oars and fuel inside. I quickly dived in to recue what I could and thankfully the engine was still attached but no oars, which meant we could now not make land. Nothing was mentioned in the pilot book about these katabatic winds but we will not return. If you like wind, and do not draw any more than 1 meter this may be the place for you but we will give it a miss next time.
The next morning was spent with my Dad cleaning out the outboard so that at least we could try and make land. We would have to purchase more oars in the next city but it was a concern.