Monday, November 28, 2011

Sunday: Jost Van Dyke

Forecast:  Winds ENE 12-17 knts, seas 4-6’, scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms, temp 84F

Cloudy skies and light showers were the markers for today but given that we planned an ashore day, this was actually quite pleasant.  We weren’t quite as good as we had been about getting up really early but given that it rained all night, and was still very cloudy the temperature was nice and mild this morning.  The kicker was the humidity which was probably at about 98%.


We started our JVD hike setting out towards Little Harbour.  We looked down at it but rather than march down the hill just to have to come on back up, we opted to carry on up the side of the mountain towards the Mountain Trail which was very clearly marked on our little tourist map. 


Our plan was to take a little bit of the Mountain Trail and then find our way back down to Diamond Cay and the bubbly pool.  We clambered on, passing numerous herds of goats on the way (this should have been a warning) but no sign of the road back down to the bay.  By the time we had climbed up over 800’ we were cluing into the fact that there was no easy loop road that was going to take us back.  In places the ‘trail’ was a two-lane concrete affair that had probably never seen the tires of a car because at other times it was a mud and grass track.  One can only assume that the lovely patches of concrete will eventually join up and be accessible from the bottom of the mountain.  After about 3 hours of road/trail that really only goats should climb, we arrived at the base of the radio towers on Majohnny Hill at an elevation of 1050’.  Needless to say the views from the top were spectacular!


Given that none of the other roads marked on the map ever materialized we decided the most prudent course was to retrace our steps – so much faster going down than up, but oh so hard on the knees.  Lunchtime found us back at Taboo enjoying a cold Presidente and a heaping fresh Greek salad.

For Caitlin and Jim – do you remember when we visited Great Harbour and walked over the road to White Bay?  Take a careful look at this picture and you can see the road heading up over the peninsula – remember how steep it was??


Our final trek on this island today was to head out to the north-east corner to the bubbly pool.  This is where there is a narrow cut in the rock and when the northern swell is up, the waves crash in and create a bit of a washing-machine effect on anyone who is up to playing in the pool.  Most of the waves today produced a gentle-cycle action but there were one or two that poured in that got everyone pretty excited.


Here’s our trek across the island – I’ve marked on it in orange the two roads we searched for that just didn’t exist.  When we showed the map to the bartender at Taboo he and his pal studied it with great concentration and then proclaimed that it might be a track but as far as they were concerned it was just a gut.  A gut is a creek bed.

2011-11-27 JVD Hike

There’s a low pressure sitting just NE of the islands now that is causing all these showers.  It may send us some pretty blustery weather overnight and tomorrow but will hopefully clear out after another 24 hours.

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