July 6, 2016
Tintamarre to Ile Fourchue to Gustavia, St Barts
This morning, staff got up at 6a.m. to drop the mooring ball and get underway…. While students slept below (they have earned it over the last few days!). Sails were raised and we close hauled into 7 ft swells…. by 8a.m., all students were awake, and we decided to stop at the remote island of Ile Fourchue for breakfast and a snorkel. Ile Fourchue was once over-run with goats which ate all the vegetation off the island, and caused a great amount of erosion. These days the goats are all gone, and the island is recovering. Seagrass lines the sandy shoreline, which of course is the favorite snack of – you guessed it, TURTLES! As a result we all turtle snorkeled for over an hour.
Back on the boats, and we made our final crossing to St Barts! We were lucky enough to get space on the port dock, and spend the afternoon exploring. Finally, we had our 4th and final birthday of the trip… this time, one of our captains, Clodagh!
The evening was spent out where we had a dinner ashore to celebrate all we have accomplished so far…and reflecting on our learnings and experiences as we pass the half way mark of the adventure!
And now, I’ll leave you with some thoughts from the kids…
So far on this trip, I have learned a lot about sailing. Ive learned points of sail, and how to trim it accordingly. I have also learned some knots and sailing right of way rules.
So far I have learned so much, especially all about sailing! Big boat sailing is very different than small boat sailing, and I have loved learning new techniques and new pieces of information. I also feel a lot more confident when I am ‘Skipper of the boat’ and being on the helm.
So far on this trip, I have learned a lot more about sailing. I also learned about the different history of the islands, and it has been very cool!
The most important thing I have learned so far is how to work together as a team. With the long sails it is SO important to work together and support each other. As a boat, we have really learned how to do that.
The coolest thing I have done on this trip is when I explored the island of Tintamarre. There is a lot of history there, and an old wreckage which made the island both mysterious and exhausting.
On Tintamarre, we discovered an abandoned farm and remains of a wrecked plane. On the far side of the island, we found a wrecked boat.
The coolest thing I’ve done so far was when we explored Tintamarre. Julian, Kian, Billy, and I set off on an expedition around the island to find a shipwreck, multiple scattered jet turbines, and an abandoned farmhouse. Although it was super cool during the day, I’m convinced that the island is legitimately haunted.
From this trip, I’ve learned a lot about American culture and way of life (I’m British). There was also some sailing, obviously 🙂
This has been my first time on a sailing boat. I’ve learned new terminology. I only puked twice on the 20 hour sail. This is also my first time in the Caribbean as well as the Atlantic. Bioluminescence is one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.
The coolest thing I have done so far has been visiting Marigot Bay. The marine wildlife and exotic islands are amazing! Sea sickness only happens when you think about it.
If my family was here, I would tell them that I saw a dolphin jump next to our boat today. Also, I swam with a turtle. Both were so cool!
The best thing that has happened to me this trip so far is getting my Open Water dive certification. I was so happy to get it. It was so cool taking my first breathe underwater. After the confined dives, I went on my first Open Water dive and it was awesome! I saw a lobster, porcupine fish, and a barracuda. It was so amazing to get my Open Water diving certification.
If my family was here right now, I would probably tell them that I was on a moving sailboat for 21 hours straight! I would also tell them that Michael threw up (3 times) and I didn’t!! I would make sure to include how proud I am of myself.
One thing that I really enjoyed so far was making the 21 hour journey. That was really helpful for me in learning how to sail better than I could before. It also gave me a chance to sail at night and that is not something you get to do all the time. Not feeling seasick at all also made the voyage enjoyable, as well.
I have learned that I can stand behind the wheel of a boat for seven ours straight! I also learned that being able to see land, does not mean that you are close to land.
I have experienced a lot of culture and diversity. I loved the opportunity to go from one island to another and meet different people with different languages and backgrounds. I’ve also seen an eagle ray, turtles, trumpetfish, and I even touched a barracuda! My boat mates are really nice.
The greatest challenge during the program was staying entertained during the quarantine period. Not being able to leave your boat and not having a phone, which was a crutch against boredom, it was difficult at first to stay entertained.