We had a pleasant downwind sail along the north coast of St Croix, then rounded the corner for a close reach in flat water. Along the way we passed Villa’s sister boat, another Prout Snowgoose! We dropped anchor in Frederiksted in time for a lovely sunset. It was nice to get back to having an unobstructed view of the horizon.
We’d come here to dive, so we got up in the morning and loaded our gear into the dinghy. We started at the dinghy dock, and swam seaward to find a huge variety of fish and critters, both on the pilings and the debris piles underneath. I always love puffers and flounders, and the huge schools were fun, but the highlight had to be the brief show we got from a medium-sized octopus. Then right at the end, Jazz tried to rescue a sea-horse that was drifting away with nothing to hold onto. This is a super cool dive, and shallow to boot – I don’t think we broke 40 feet.
After the morning dive, we spent the afternoon wandering around Frederiksted. We especially liked the contrast between the two police “vehicles” parked right next to each other.
We liked the pier dive so much that we did it again the next day – after dying Jazz’s hair, of course. This time we started at the very end of the pier, which I would not recommend, as the sparser pillars support a lot fewer critters. Still, we saw plenty of fish, including one scorpion fish that was willing to reveal some fin colors for us. Also, a seahorse that was gripping the coral instead of drifting out to sea.
We came back to the boat to find Captain had missed us his usual amount, and relaxed into another gorgeous sunset.
We were starting to feel bad about leaving him on the boat all the time, so we took him out for a pizza adventure. He fit in great with all the other cats at Lost Dog. Coming back to the boat, we saw a bunch of night divers setting out for the pier; more on that later, I’m sure.
Frederiksted is definitely a dive mecca. There are mooring balls all up and down the coast, marking various points along the reef that covers most of the western side of the island. And there are some four dive shops, so it’s an easy place to get your tanks refilled. So that’s what we did: here’s us using the cart for its intended purpose for the first time, instead of just carting around laundry and groceries.
We couldn’t stay forever as we had friends coming to visit us in St John, but we would definitely be back here.