India Vacation

My friend Uday’s brother got married in India this month, I attended the wedding and toured the county. I posted some of photos at Wedding, Chennai Beach, Hyderabad, Pune Day 1, Pune Day 2 And Charminar. If you don’t like the photos at Facebook I’ve posted some to Picasa.


Fun in the Caribbean Windwards

Thanks to the generous invitation of Marc Hachey to me and my sister, Katy, we arranged to spend two weeks in the Windward Islands of the Caribbean with Marc and his Peterson 44 Sea Angel. I know Marc from hiking with him in the Sierras by Lake Tahoe. He’s an amazing hiker, we did a 26 mile day hike in fall 2009.

After meeting over dinner in November we arranged to fly into St. Vincent the evening of Wednesday, December 31st and to fly back to the states Monday, January 11th.

After flying into St. Vincent and getting picked up by Marc we had our first sail the next day over to Bequia, our first experience sailing in the Caribbean was wonderful. We couldn’t have asked for better conditions the winds were ~20knots and sunny skies. What a difference compared to the states where it had been gloomy and rainy in California.

After anchoring in Bequia we relaxed and I went for a short run on the island.

Bequia Harbor

That evening Marc’s friend Art invited us over to his boat the Jo Na Li to spend new years with him, his wife, daughter and a few others. We had fun chatting and eventually went over to the island and saw the new years fireworks over the harbor.

After picking up another crew member, Laura Tonello, our next destination was the Tobago Cays which according to Marc have decent snorkelling. Our sail down was again very enjoyable. Marc’s GPS with the arrow pointing to the way points made the navigating dead simple. After sailing down and anchoring I took a few photos; there were a lot of people it practically looked like a busy harbor!

Laura Tonello in the Tobago Cays

The next day we went snorkelling which I sucked very badly at. I might have set a world record for sucking in sea water every possible way in a snorkel. After finishing up snorkeling or in my case trying to snorkel we checked out the beach on one of the islands and spotted the large number of conch shells from times past when the area had more plentiful sea life.

After all our fun in the Cays we sailed back up to Bequia and spent a little more time there. But I was looking forward to climbing the Petit Piton in St. Lucia. To sail up to St. Lucia Marc decided to sail on the windward side of St. Vincent. This was a great decision with ~25 knot winds and a ~1-2 knot current in our favor. While sailing on the windward side of St. Vincent we had a few instants that we broke 10 knots and we had a steady 8+ knots for a few hours!

We got into the harbor between the Pitons in the afternoon and I took a few photos of the Petit Piton which Marc had talked about climbing way back in November when we discussed the trip over dinner. It looked like a fun climb!

Petit Piton

The trail to the top is on the other side which is a tiny bit less steep but still requires ropes in a few spots. The next day we sailed over to Soufriere and Marc checked in with his very good friends at the SMMA including one very funny lady, Baby! They had one of the customs officials drive us to lunch for roti’s. It was my first time getting chauffeured by a custom official!

A couple days later Marc and I made it up the Piton and what a climb. Marc has done it twice in one day! I was happy with getting to the top, it’s a fun climb and I highly recommend it.

Marc on the Petit Piton

My sister Katy and Laura didn’t climb to the top of the Piton but the next day we all went to the the rainforest. Sadly my batteries died before I could take photos of the rainforest but it was very beautiful and untouched compared to the rest of the island.

I’ve only touched on a very few of the highlights of our trip. I want to again thank Marc, and everyone else for making it a wonderful experience. I still think of your dinners, Marc, and your banana crepes, Laura.

We flew back to the states from Rodney Bay.