Sunday, December 13, 2009

Los Roques

We have been back in California for a month. It is time to celebrate the holidays. It is cold and rainy here in Carlsbad. A nice change from the tropics. But, we are starting to miss the boat and our friends and the islands and the water and our stress free lifestyle. It seems, however, that we will be on land for a few more weeks. Time enough to get caught up on the blog.

Here are pictures of our trip from Blanquilla to Los Roques. We leave Blanquilla mid afternoon. The weather is beautiful but there is not alot of wind so we figure it will take us the rest of the day and all night to cover the 100 miles or so to our next destination.

We don't catch alot of fish but the squid seem to like our nice clean white decks.

We arrive at the eastern side of the islands in the early morning. The distinct lighthouse is a welcome sight. Next we have to find the small opening in the reef.

The islands here are low and dry. Once through the reef it is easy to eyeball where the deep water is. Our first priority is to have some breakfast and then catch a few zzzzzz's. We find the first acceptable spot behind the reef and drop our anchor.

Grand Roque is the main island here. There is a small airport, a few sailors like us and a large number of Venezuelan yachts. This is a tourist destination for the well-to-do citizens of Venezuela.

It is easy to see why. Surrounding Grand Roque is a series of small uninhabited islands with beaches that look just like this.

Tour operators bring groups of people to the beach...chair, shade, lunch, beer, nice.

We are desperate for some Internet. We have been away from WiFi for two weeks. No phone, no email, no texting, no blogging, no pizza. Yes we are desperate. On Grand Roque we find La Chuchera. Only problem is we have no $$$ Bolivars. Lucky for us the owner speaks English and is happy to exchange some dollars for us. He even offers us the going black market rate of 6 to 1 as opposed to the government exchange of 2 to 1. It is our lucky day. Do you have pizza? YES!

The small town on Grand Roque is charming. It is clean and the people are friendly. There is no shortage of sand here so the streets are make of sand. Makes sense. No shoes required.

A short way from Gran Roque is the small island of Crasqui. We anchor right by this beach for 3 days. We have to drag ourselves away. There are hardly any other boaters here and the beach is ours exclusively.

Nearby we can explore the mangroves.

Our landing craft when we don't feel like swimming to the beach.

There is good snorkeling here.

Pretty coral

Next island we visit is Sanqui. People often ask us what we do all day? We do this

And this

And some fishing

Steve pretends to be Lloyd Bridges in Sea Hunt

And who are you now captain?

Next stop is the island of Isla Carenero.

The locals have placed fish traps in this little lagoon. Looks like it will be Midnight Parrot fish for dinner tonight for this lady.

We are again anchored by a great beach
The weather has been great and after two weeks of fun

We spend our last night in Los Roques and tomorrow we head to the Aves. Unfortunately we are not stopping long. We are on a fast track to Bonaire but we think we might come back here someday.
A map of the islands of Los Roques. The red line is the Fine Line travel that line?

Anne and Steve
S/V Fine Line