When you casually glance at a chart, the TCI archipelago appears to be hundreds of square miles of interesting islands to explore.
We’ve heard there is great diving and windsurfing, I reckoned we would need at least a month to see it all.
Then when you then sit down and study the charts and pilot books you realise that it’s not really a place for sailing boats to cruise and there are only a handful of possible anchorages. The whole place is so shallow that even we can’t get in to most of it. We hadn’t really done the homework until we arrived.
Providenciales (Provo) is the most developed and commercial island. The north coast is a continuous strip of white sand, beautiful water inside a barrier reef, backed by resorts and hotels.
But what it lacks in interesting anchorages it makes up for with great facilities. We had a few small boat jobs to do; we needed a metal fabrication, some woodwork and a few spares. Provo has great DIY shops, workshops, engineers and machine shops, a real hive of industry down the dusty tracks inland. And all quite enjoyable thanks to the friendly and helpful folks of Provo.
We ticked some jobs off the list, also went scuba diving at West Caicos, found some waves on the Provo reef passes and sampled some of the many restaurants.
Wendy and Tony joined us for a few days. This was the first time Wendy (Dawn’s Mum) had sailed with us since she crewed a passage from La Coruna on our first Atlantic trip 12 years ago. We were keen to show them a slice of Escapade life.
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We went sailing and found some quiet cays to the North of Provo where we anchored and explored a bit, Tony piloted the boat through the reefs, we ate conch, went snorkelling and marvelled at Wendy’s 2-up freestyle windsurfing debut.
Great to hear all the news and realise how out of touch we are with UK current affairs. The intrepid travellers left us to continue their trip travelling Cuba from end to end by road. We look forward to hearing all about it.
The Endless Summer?
Living a whole winter on a sailing boat is really my dream come true. I spent the last thirty odd winters working, with weekends windsurfing the gales in the brutally cold English Channel, paid my dues. Now I’m living in the tropics for months at a time, in and on the water every day, warm trade winds – the endless summer.
Having successfully avoided two winters, there is just one small thing at the back of my mind. It’s all nearly perfect, but there is still something I am missing….
All those cold winters were at least close enough to the Alps for a couple of trips each season.
When I first mentioned this Dawn laughed, “you can’t have it all”.
But there was an invitation to join friends on a ski trip, with an offer to bring all our snowboard gear from Guernsey!
In Turks and Caicos we found a safe harbour to park a boat for 10 days and direct flights to Canada.
We’re off to Whistler.