First Anchorage in Antigua

1/16/2021

Deep Harbor, Antigua

Our first family overnight anchorage on Manaphy. It’s spectacular! A cozy little cove, teardrop shaped, landing to a sandy beach. We are 150 yards offshore, a light breeze keeping us comfortable windward. Anchored in 10 feet, sea grass floor, 40 ft of chain, rock wall to lee.

We left Jolly Harbor this morning about 10:15. Headed straight out, emptied the tanks and made water. Sailed for an hour, Tiffany and August as mates, Archer took a cat nap. The wind stiffened to 20-22 and we dropped sail and headed to anchor in Deep Bay. Eased into a great spot, a corner framed by a rock wall, just beneath an old fort (Fort Barrington, built in 1779 by Admiral Barrington) on our north and sandy beach due east.

The boys did a great job dropping anchor! We practiced in Freeman’s Bay last weekend in English Harbor, and it paid off today. It was really smooth, Archer handling the controls but August fully engaged, proud Tiffany got to watch from the comfort of the fwd cockpit!

We caught our breath and had a light lunch. Then we jumped in the water, and it was fantastic. Just cool enough, it felt great to float in the sun. The wind kept it lively, a small chop and light swell had the boys out in about 20 minutes but it was a great first dip.

Then we dropped the dinghy and had a blast each practicing at the helm. The boys did great, August was amazingly calm and cool, Archer really showed confidence and control. Tiffany was tentative at first but got the hang of it! It was a beautiful setting with the late afternoon sun weaving thru the harbor dotted with boats.  Once back at the boat we spotted sea turtles and even witnessed a beach wedding, at some quaint beach resort tucked into the distant hillside.

Now all are asleep but me. I’m in the lounge, maybe for the first time really experiencing it’s potential. Seclude beach anchorage, sky full of stars, new boat humming below. It’s incredible, this is finally it, this is the fantasy! The sound of the sea, the lapping water, the wind drying my mouth. The lights of the few houses along the hillside. The stars.

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