November 20, 2013–With almost all of the Salty Dawgs at their chosen destinations in the Bahamas, B.V.I. and elsewhere, things are settling down for the fleet of 116 boats that left Hampton, Virginia between November 2 and 8.
At the Bitter End Yacht Club, Virgin Gorda, B.V.I., where the Dawgs get free moorings right after the rally, boats were steadily arriving in anticipation of the big end of rally party to be held there on November 21. Already, those who arrived at the BEYC earlier, have been meeting on the beach for sun downers. Everyone it seems has a tale to tell from the passage south and some are getting to work making repairs or cleaning up their boats.
At the big send off party in Hampton the Dawgs ran a raffle with many great items on offer. Appropriately, the skipper who won the deep sea fishing pole and rig, caught a large wahoo on the trip that fed the crew handsomely. Also, appropriately, the skipper who won a gift certificate from New England Ropes for a new main sheet is ready to cash it in since his mainsheet parted on the way to the Caribbean.
The camaraderie among the Salty Dawgs is amazing and really underscores the true cruising spirit. Certainly the weather this fall was fraught with numerous cold and warm fronts and low pressure cells that combined to make the passage southward from the East Coast more challenging than usual. Through the passage south and afterward, SDR crews have repeatedly extended helping hands and provided moral and technical support to each other.
Here’s the latest update on the Salty Dawg Rally website that sums up that cruising spirit: www.satydawgrally.org.