Welcome to Hawksnest Bay

Hawksnest Bay is an indentation on the Northwest shore of the Caribbean island of Saint John, in the United States Virgin Islands. You can find it on the map below. The island of Saint John is one of my favorite places. Hawksnest Bay is the site that I picked for a series of fictional stories that I will be posting on this page at a later date. Eventually this site will contain information and stories about the island, the inhabitants and the adventures they have there. Click here to view a great panoramic photograph of St. John's and Hawksnest Bay. Hawksnest Bay is the first bay on the left, just behind that long penninsula.

Map of the Virgin Islands

Hawksnest Bay Stories:

Coming soon (I've been saying this for quite awhile haven't I?).

Map of Saint John

Saint John: Click here for a large scale map of the Island.

One of my favorite places in the British Virgin Islands is Jost Van Dyke, an Island not far north of St. John's. One of the reasons its my favorite is a place there in Great Harbour called Foxy's. Foxy's is a beach bar and restaurant located in the shade of numerous palm trees, at the edge of the beach in the Northeast corner of Great Harbour. They serve great food, you can eat and drink until you can't stand up anymore, then you can lay down in one of the many hammocks around the perimeter and listen to Foxy sing and tell jokes. What more could you ask for?

Bareboat Sailboat Chartering in the Virgin Islands:

How much does it cost? On June 1, 1998 we returned from our third bareboat charter in the Virgin Islands (8 days on boat, 1 in hotel). The table below lists the costs of our first two trips and what I estimated this last trip would cost (the estimate came out pretty close except we ate out more and bought more tee shirts than any one person should own). In all three of these trips the costs are for two couples on a 40 - 45 foot center cockpit sailboat, flying from Austin, TX to either the USVI's or BVI's This years tickets included a lot of frequent flyer miles given to us by the couple who went with us. We also got a great deal on the boat because Sunsail substituted a 44' for the 40' we originally reserved.


Charter costs 1989 1991 1998
Location: Virgin Islands US & BVI US & BVI BVI's
Charter 8 days 11 days 8 days
Company CSC CSC Sunsail
Boat Endeavor 40 91 Morgan 45 Beneteau 44 CC
Total $1,695.00 $2,950.00 $2,944.00
Per Person $423.75 $737.50 $736.00
Trip Insurance - - -
Damage Waiver - - $50.00
Sec. Deposite $125.00 $125.00 -
Insurance $20.00 $27.50 -
Air Fare $462.00 $513.00 $400.00
Provisioning $119.00 $80.00 $90.00
- - - -
Sub-Total P/P $1,149.75 $1,483.00 $1,323.09
- - - -
BVI Fee $18.75 $18.75 $20.00
Fuel & Water $25.00 $30.00 $40.00
Ice $5.00 $5.00 $10.00
Liquor & Soft Drinks $10.00 $10.00 $15.00
Marina $0.00 $10.00 $15.00
Mooring Fees 3 nights $9.00 $10.00 $15.00
Dining out $60.00 $120.00 $150.00
Taxi, Souv. misc. $150.00 $150.00 $150.00
- - - -
Sub-Total P/P $277.75 $353.75 $415.00
- - - -
Departure Night Hotel P/P $65.00 $80.00 $60.00
Departure Night Meals P/P $30.00 $40.00 $40.00
- - - -
Sub-Total $95.00 $120.00 $100.00
- - - -
- - - -
TOTAL w/ Deposite $1,522.50 $1,956.75 $1,838.09
Less Deposite ($125.00) ($125.00) $0.00
TOTAL Cost P/P $1,397.50 $1,831.75 $1,838.09

Charter Companies:

Someone recently asked me about the Moorings. They have a great reputation, but we have not used them yet. They were one of the first companies I checked with. But since we usually go with another couple, we prefer to charter a boat that has two very nice cabins, with maximum privacy between them. That typically means a Center Cockpit boat, with one nice cabin in the bow and ONLY one nice cabin in stern. This layout is not that common. Most of the Moorings charter boats (and many other companies) are three cabin arrangements (two in the stern). Or the stern cabin is very cramped under a stern cockpit. Also many other two cabin boats, such as Hunters, have an athwart ship berth in the stern (head at port and stern at starboard, or vis-versa). The Endeavour that we chartered on our first trip was like that. I hated sleeping in that kind of a berth, in any kind of a swell the boat rolls from Port to Starboard constantly, and your blood (or your stomach contents) rolls back and forth from your feet to your head. Fore and Aft aligned berths are far more comfortable.

We found what we were looking for at SunSail. This time we are going to charter a new Beneteau 40 Center Cockpit

We had a good experience with SunSail, but not everyone does. Here is an email I recieved from someone who did not. Sunsail.txt

We returned from the Charter June 1, 1998, had a wonderful time. Here are a few comments about the boat. We ended up with a Beneteau 44 Center Cockpit. I was asked:

"Actually, I'm interested in what you thought of that Beneteau 44cc. Even though I love my boat, I imagine the 40 or 44 might be my next boat in the next 10 years or so..."

My opinion: The two boats are almost identical as you may already know. We originally reserved a Beneteau 40cc, which I think I would have preffered because the sail sizes of the 44 were so more work to furl/unfurl/tack that for short trips we chose to motor rather than do all the work required.

She came from Sunsail with a furling main as well as a Profurl furling jib. The 44cc typically comes standard with an electric halyard winch for the Main, which I'm sorry I didn't get to try out. Furling the Main with the two speed winch took several minutes during which you had to point directly into the wind (or chance a jam), and it was enough to wear out this 47 year old man. Add the work required for the furling Jib (which was easier) and its definitly a tough job. There is no way my wife could ever do it. Its impossible to drop sail quickly with this rig which concerns me very much.

She sailed far better than and much faster than either the Endeavour 40 or the 91 Morgan 45 that we had chartered previously, frequently hitting 7 knots. She had more weather helm than I expected on a beam reach, but still far less than the 91 Morgan 45 I'd chartered previously. All things considered I was very happy with the 44's sailing ability and she had a comfortable motion.

Sunsail asked us to upgrade for free to the 44cc because they had another charter with sailing less experience they wanted to put on the 40cc and I've chartered boats twice before and owned 3 of my own.

The 44cc has a very nice forward cabin, queen sized berth on centerline & forward, so it had great ventilation. It has been my experience that in the tropics the forward berth always has better ventilation than the larger aft cabin. The aft dorade vents are undersized, primarily because the main sheet likes to snag them on occasion. I'd be inclined to install larger dorade's with S/S gaurds to protect them, as they did forward. The forward head was located aft of the berth and to starboard. This head was so narrow you could hardly turn around in it much less shower. The aft cabin had a huge head with a seperate sit down shower area, very nice.

The electric windless with all chain anchor rode was a real pleasure to use, especially when we fished up a 300 pound chunk of coral on the plow.

The main cabin had no opening portholes which I think was a mistake, even with the large overhead hatch and companionway open you could feel no air circulation at the nav table or the port dining table. The table was a little too long making it hard to get in and out of the settee, but very comfortable when everyone was seated.

The 40cc has the head forward in the bow, and appears to be a better layout than the 44 for showering, but the ceiling hieght is probably a little low. On the 40cc the forward berth is set off to Starboard where with a large overhead hatch it probably still has good ventilation, the only drawback is someone has to sleep on the inboard side.

The 44cc has a much larger engine, 65 hp versus 40 hp I believe. It handled well under power, but I never could get it to do a K-Turn in reverse, probably because it wouldn't turn as sharp as I thought it should in forward.

This would be an extremely comfortable boat in a cooler climate. It has an incredable amount of built in storage space, we hardly put a dent in it with a weeks worth of provisions and clothing.

End of Boat review


Tropic Island

TMM Tortola Fleet

The Moorings: Welcome to Paradise

The British Virgin Islands' Boating Page lists several small companies.

Sunsail Homepage


* British Virgin Islands:

* St. John 'Tradewinds':

* US Virgin Islands:

* The Virgin Islands Business Journal:

* WSTA's Good News:

* Caribbean Weather

* VI Weather:

* Caribbean-On-Line:

Devil's Bay, Virgin Gorda - Painting:

Click here to see a painting I made of a sailboat anchored in Devil's Bay, Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands. This was the first painting that I ever made on a computer, I used ClarisWorks painting software on a Macintosh.


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