The dream to live on a boat and cruise the Caribbean is a big dream and like most big dreams takes a bit of organizing. The last 2 years have been a whirlwind, work, boat, family, house and boat again to prepare for this trip. It is all to easy to forget that the goal is to slow down and live a simple life in the warmth of a Caribbean winter.
First time marathoners often have the post marathon blues, their goal achieved by dedicating their life to the required training, they feel lost and deflated when the glow of finishing the marathon is gone. Once the ability to go down a flight of stairs has returned there is a sense of deflation and listlessness that is hard to explain. The passage to Tortola was our marathon and I have been having some difficulty with slowing down and getting into cruising mode. We have spent the last 10 days in the North Sound of Virgin Gorda. The North Sound is a happening place, superyachts, cruisers and lots of charter boats flock here. Luckily we had a recommendation of a nice quiet spot – Deep Bay (don’t tell anyone!) just past Saba Rock. We spent a few days adapting to the heat and the pace and we are now relaxed and not overheated.
We decided to try a hike to the top of Virgin Gorda – Gorda Peak. We moved the boat to the an anchorage off Prickly Pear Island, we happened to drop the hook next to Caffe Latte. We had a catch up with Jean and Yolène, they were hosting friends from Montreal. This was a gentle reintroduction to a more social life we expect for the rest of the trip.
The next morning we took the dinghy across the sound to the village of Gun Creek, the closest part of the sound to Virgin Peak.
As we left the village and started the steep climb up North Sound Road we found ourselves in the company of another couple. Dan and Sarah from Calypso introduced themselves to us. Cruisers from Oregon, Dan and Sarah are like us starting on their cruising life and we had lots to talk about on the hot climb.
We eventual reached the trail head at the edge of the Gorda Peak National Park, the trail was a bit muddy from recent rain but it was shady and quite a contrast from the road on the approach.
We climbed through the trees and Kathleen had a Rocks and Trees and Water moment as we could have almost been in Canada, but the lovely smell of the flowers gave it away as a tropical island.
The top of the climb is a lookout tower, tall enough to see over the forest with views of the entire island and the Francis Drake Channel.
The way down was easier and the views were better
On the way back to Gun Creek we stopped at Hog Heaven where the photo at the top of the page was taken. The views are amazing, Hog Heaven is above Leverick Bay with views over the North Sound to Anegada and Richard Branson’s Bond Villain lair, Necker Island. For somewhere with “Hog” in its name, they had a couple of good Veg options, Dan and Sarah had the ribs which were good.
Our first hike was a total success, we met new people, had a great walk with great views and the reward of a nice lunch. We are adapting, being here is a long way from getting here.