Getting Off the Beaten Track in the Windward Islands
reproduced courtesy of imray, laurie, norie, and wilson ltd. (www.imray.com)
The next day, go around the corner to Anse de Sables (see Street's Guide, pages 64-65), another harbor where eyeball navigation is required. I've never visited this anchorage, but I've flown over it many times and visited it twice by car; it looks like a very worthwhile stop. Anchored in the lee of the Maria Islands, you'll find crystal-clear water, no bugs, and, to leeward, 3 miles of white-sand beach on St. Lucia. The only habitation here is a small restaurant and a windsurfing school.
From Anse de Sables, head south to windward of St. Vincent. The course, about 200 degrees magnetic, guarantees you a glorious 40-mile reach down the east coast to the south end of St. Vincent. Here you have to decide whether to bear off and run almost dead downwind the 8 miles to the entrance of Bequia's Admiralty Bay or continue reaching for 9 miles to the uninhabited island of Baliceaux.
Baliceaux is 1.5 miles long and seldom visited by yachts. Anchor near the northwest end or go south and anchor in Landing Bay; be careful to sail around the reefs to the west.
If you leave Baliceaux at the civilized hour of 1100 for the 5-mile sail to Mustique, you'll arrive at 1200, just when boats are departing, and you'll have your pick of moorings. After you tire of Mustique, it's a downhill slide to Bequia.
After decades of cruising and exploring, I continue to find that there are anchorages that still resemble the Caribbean as it was when I first arrived in the West Indies 50 years ago. You just have to be willing to get off the beaten track.
Don Street is available as a rock, tide, and wind guide in the Caribbean. For more information, visit his website (www.street-iolaire.com). Street will give presentations at the 2008 Newport Boat Show in Rhode Island and at the 2008 U.S. Sailboat Show in Annapolis.