Tuesday 12 Mar, BVI day 8: Depart Anegada, sail past Sir Richard Branson then anchor in Oil Nut Bay on Virgin Gorda.
Today has 2 distinct activities: flying the drone in multiple places on Anegada and sailing back to Virgin Gorda.
Early alarm and as we have breakfast yet more boats are coming into the anchorage. The mooring field is long full up and they are now anchoring in any little gap they can find. We wonder why all of a sudden the charter boats are herding here. By 9:20 we are on a scooter again, this time a 2-hour hire. First stop is the lake with the pink flamingo. Up goes the drone for a wonderful view of the inner lakes on the island and the flamingo flock. They are almost 1km away but we can hear their commotion as the drone approaches. They are not happy with this buzzy invasion. So before they get too upset we back off and film them from a distance. They are quite a sight. Must be well over 100 in the flock. Apparently they get their pink colour from the pink prawns and shell fish they eat.
Back on the scooter we zip over to the north coast just west of Loblolly Bay. We weave the scooter through narrow tracks on the dunes to the water’s edge. This drone flight is over the crystal turquoise water on this north coast with waves breaking over the reef. Again, quite a spectacle from the air.
Our last venue on the scooter is the western tip of the island where we fly from the Atlantic side to the Caribbean Sea side where yesterday we saw kiters in among the breaking surf.
We get the scooter back bang on 2 hours, then head back to Cloudy Bay where yet more cats have anchored around us. There has to be over 100 anchored and moored boats now. Probably 4x the number of boats from when we arrived. Time to leave, we think!
By 1pm (bang on high tide) we gently motor over the shallow grass bank that has been plaguing us for the last days and manage to pick up the anchor while the depth reads just 2.5m, our exact draft! Phew, that anchor spot was a bit risky. Glad to be out of there.
As we sail away from Anegada we are in the lee of the Horse Shoe reef and the water is an astounding blue. So up goes the drone again. Even though the battery is only 75% charged we cannot resist it. Can’t wait to see the footage tonight. Bit of a short flight but Oana catches the drone perfectly first time with 30% left on its flight battery.
While sailing back across to Virgin Gorda in a gentle 7-9kt breeze we decide to pinch up on the wind and go and see Richard Branson’s Necker Island from up close. You never know, if he sees our ensign we might get invited in for a cuppa tea!
But no such luck, we pass close to Necker, which really is a paradise island, and see no sign of Sir Richard. But we do get lots of photos and even take Cloudy into his bay as close as we can. Until we see a security boat coming at us!
As it’s so calm today, I decide we should go and explore Oil Nut Bay. This is a shallow bay on the windward side of Virgin Gorda, fully protected by reef from the trade wind swell. There is only one catamaran anchored in this huge bay, otherwise it is deserted of yachts, and I wonder if we are even allowed to anchor here. Nevertheless, we do!
A lunch stop in this beautiful bay, close to Oil Nut resort, is in total contrast to the overcrowded bay on Anegada this morning.
Although we aren’t really at risk, it feels rather exposed here directly on the windward shore, so I opt to move and anchor directly behind the small Eustatius island. And here we stay for the night. No lights, no noisy beach bars, no rowdy charter cats … just the gentle lapping of the water, the sound of tree frogs ashore and a sky full of stars and a setting moon. Idilic.
The evening is spent trying to recover our lost video files that I accidentally deleted 🙁 but sadly they are all now over written. This means that tomorrow we have to re-visit and re-shoot video at The Baths. Oh hum … it’s a good excuse to go back there again. It is afteral one of the highlights of BVI.
Sleep comes easy in this paradise anchorage.