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Old 08-16-2004, 09:14 PM
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Default BVI Kiteboarding?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gumball
Actually, I'm only going to be in St. Thomas for 2 days then I've chartered a sail boat to take the girl & I around the virgin islands for 8 days. I know all about St. Croix, awesome place to kite and Bill Kraft is a bud and a team rider, but we were looking to explore St. Thomas and the surrounding islands hoping to find some killer secret spots. So if anyone knows of some beaches we should hit, please let me know and I'll post a full report on my return.

As for St. Thomas, as I said, I'll only be there for 2 afternoons, before and after the boat, so I won't have a lot of time to find the "spot" and I want to get some sessions in. I'm staying at the Ritz and I read that their beach is a good place to launch, true?

Thanks.
Sounds good. Speaking about the BVI next door to the USVI, a few suggestions come to mind.


From: http://community.webshots.com/

Starting at the west end of BVI, Drake Channel necks down between St. John and the west end of Tortola near Little Thatch Cay. As a result the wind speed in that area can be a bit greater than in other parts of the channel. A bit to the north, east of Jost Van Dyke and west of Tortola, there is Sandy Cay. You can pick up some wind there but it can be gusty as it sweeps down from some of the high, rain forest areas of Tortola. Still, it has nice white sandy beaches, easy approaches for dingys and a nice shallow, sandy bottomed anchoring area to the SW of the cay. Also, Jost Van Dike is worth a stop for a drink, I suspect that you have been there before anyway. The Bomba Shack on the north end of Tortola falls into the interesting visit catagory, particularly if you can catch a Full Moon Madness Mushroom Party for cheap thrills!

Moving further to the east in Drake Channel there are nice riding grounds off most of the islands that form the southern arch of the channel. Many of the beaches are in the lee of headlands and not great for kite launching. Still for boat launch, things are wide open. While you are there why not stop by the Willy-T a floating bar in The Bight of Norman Island. Good frozen drinks, noshes and a great view to go with.

It is a bit more commercialized but Road Town harbor on Tortola can develop some nice wind perhaps due to refraction about the headland to the east. Anyway, if you can setup around the SW portion of the bay if good easterly winds are on you should have good conditions.

There is an interesting place to the west of Beef Island, a local "Gorge" of sorts. I believe it is an area off of Trellis Bay and inside a small cay to the NE where the wind is pumped up by venturi effect. If you head over to Virgin Gorda the Baths are worth a mooring stop even if the wind is iffy. As long as you're there why not stop at the Bitter End Yacht Club. They have some nice restaurants and bars plus I believe there is a kiteboarding operation there now. You may be able to beach launch off of Mosquito Island to the north of Bitter End. Of course, Anegada is a nice reach to the north of Bitter End and the area south of Setting Point, in the lee of the island provides some nice butter riding conditions when conditions are right. It is offshore so it is good to have a tender on call but since the land is low it can be fairly steady.

I just found an interesting resource at:

http://www.conchcharters.co.uk/pge/bvi.php

Hit the interactive map at the lower left hand side of the page. You can then customize it with beaches. A few prospects will show up, some that I never thought about such as the windward beaches on Peter Island and Virgin Gorda.

If you're into diving, don't forget to bring some gear along. The viz. in BVI is often quite good, with nice blue water. You could hit the wreck of the Rhone which appeared in the movie The Deep. If you see Jacky Bissett's tee shirt bring it back as a souvenir. The Dogs, a series of rock outcrops to the NE provide some dramatic massive UW rock clusters and shallow caves to checkout. The snorkeling around the Baths is fun too among these massive volcanic boulders hurled all over the place in historical eruptions.

Have a blast!
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