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Old 03-23-2013, 09:30 AM   #1
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St. Maarten

We just left St. Maarten. The island is split between the French and Dutch and touts it self as the yacht capital of the Caribbean which isn't hard to believe after seeing what's here. The island is 100% duty free so boat parts and provisions are cheap or cheaper than the US. Boat services are very good with the Dutch side mostly servicing the big boys. Simpson Lagoon is pretty much landlocked with 2 entrances; one on the French side and the other on the Dutch. The Dutch side is the larger of the 2. The bridge to get into the lagoon opens 3 times per day for inbound and outbound vessels. The opening has a width of 56' and a draft of 17'. If you want to enter or exist out on your schedule, no problem, it'll cost you $1,000 though and only during day light hours. The boat watching is incredible.

The first 2 pictures are of Serene (guests 24, crew 52). At 439' with a beam of 61' she had to anchor out. Notice the "swing" out above the anchor.

The next are an entrance, accidents do happen and one of the marinas.


Teak decks in your dinghy?


Hobo sharing an anchorage with C2.


Ace getting her windows cleaned.
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Old 03-23-2013, 10:39 AM   #2
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WOW!! Thanks for sharing!! Where are you off to next?
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Old 03-23-2013, 11:30 AM   #3
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We just arrived in St John, USVI. We'll hang around here for a week or so then on to the Spanish Virgins, one of our favorites. When we have a better internet connection I'll post some more of our trip up from Trinidad.
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Old 03-23-2013, 04:01 PM   #4
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I'm looking to move to St. Maarten and I plan to keep my boat in the lagoon on the Dutch side at Simpson Bay Marina at times. I am an American citizen. Do you have to clear Customs everytime you leave the lagoon and come back? How long can you wait before you have to clear Customs once you enter the lagoon? How long will it take you to get back to St. John and what places do you stop at on the way from St. Maarten and why? I'm looking at trawlers in the 40-44ft range. Most of my cruising will be within 100-125 miles of St. Maarten. What can you tell me about the general sea conditions in this area? Anything that I should watch out for? Any hints or tips will be helpful. Thanks
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Old 03-26-2013, 12:38 PM   #5
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Ya mon: Get a hold of Chris Doyle's book "The Cruising Guide to the Leeward Islands. The book answers all your questions better than I could plus he gives you all the detail you'll need for the surrounding areas.
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Old 03-26-2013, 02:47 PM   #6
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St Maarten

Thank you! Happy and safe cruising!
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:13 AM   #7
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Larry, great times I'm sure
I lived in St Croix and sailed all over the islands in my youth. St John is the best US territory by far. I really enjoy Virgin Gorda. Stop by Saba Rock and have a drink
enjoy!
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:18 AM   #8
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Larry, on a separate note....did you buy your Krogen down there or sail it down? If you sailed it down (from where), would you do it again? Do anything differently?
Thanks,
Robert
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:48 PM   #9
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In May, I'll start my second leg of my trip, trawlering from Luperon to Trnidad, and it was good information here. Thank you

Sergio "Alemao" Sztancsa, Sent from my iPhone using Trawler
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Old 04-02-2013, 10:53 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by roguewave View Post
Larry, on a separate note....did you buy your Krogen down there or sail it down? If you sailed it down (from where), would you do it again? Do anything differently?
Thanks,
Robert
Robert: We left on Hobo from Sitka, AK in July, 2007. What would we do differently? Maybe add a wind generator and 2 solar panels. And maybe rethink the trip from Columbia to the ABC's. We waited 5 weeks for a weather window that never really happened last year. Usually in May/June there are 2-4 periods of good trawler conditions.
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Old 04-02-2013, 01:05 PM   #11
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I think that in May/June will be a great time to cruise in Caribean. You said that just a few periods of wind windows ?
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Old 04-02-2013, 02:59 PM   #12
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I think that in May/June will be a great time to cruise in Caribean. You said that just a few periods of wind windows ?
Alemao: You're right, the Eastern Caribbean, Leewards and Windward's should be fine in May/June. The weather windows I was referring to were for heading east, from Columbia to the Aruba. Last year there wasn't much in May and we pushed it in June. In fact, June is historically the windiest month in Aruba with the average wind speed @ 18 knots from the E to ENE, which of course was the direction we wanted to go.

When are you off again? We're in Puerto Rico and should be in Luperon later this month/early May. It would be nice to meet up with you.
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