Bravo 3 Trip Update Day 6 – Eric von Aschwege, Program Director
The Bravo fleet awoke at 7am this morning in anticipation for a very busy day of diving, truck tours, and sailing! The Open Water (OW) and Discover Scuba (DSD) prepped their gear for a morning dive at the RMS Rhone, a mail steamer that was destroyed by a hurricane. The steamer had originally been anchored in Great Harbor on Peter Island, and survived the first part of the storm. As the eye passed overhead, the Captain (not realizing there was still more of the storm to come) attempted to leave the islands. He made it just outside of Salt Island before the storm came on again, and was thrown upon the sharp rocks. The ship’s back broke in two, allowing water to flood the ship, making the boiler explode instantly. The stern of the vessel lies in shallow water, where students swam around her propeller and explored her side, now much deteriorated and covered in corals and sea life.
While the divers were enjoying the Rhone, everyone else hopped in the back of our trucks and went on a tour around the island! They drove along the coast and then up the steep mountain roads to get a great view of the island, the towns below, and the other islands beyond. On the north side of the island everyone could see how the winds made the seas a lot steeper than the protected channel we typically sail in.
After the truck tour returned, there was a little free time to enjoy lounging by the pool and sipping virgin daiquiris, but soon the divers returned and lunch had to be made. After lunch, the boats prepped for dedocking, and Vivaldi headed out first. Spencer steered Vivaldi out of her slip with Captain Sara by her side, and cleared the docks beautifully on this windy day. Next up was Sao Jorge, and with Caroline at the helm and Captain Kat alongside, she was dedocked in minutes! With both boats dedocked, they left Road Town harbor and sailed across the channel to Great Harbor on Peter Island. The winds today were blowing from the remnants of a tropical low, but the boats sailed with reefed (reduced) sails and had an exciting time breaking through the waves and practicing tacking and learning points of sail.
Once the boats had both moored in Great Harbor, everyone showered and prepped dinner. After dinner and boat meeting, a scallywag of a pirate, the Dread Pirate Eric, boarded each boat and announced that tomorrow was Challenge Day – the “Opportune Moment” in which students take full command and responsibility of their vessel and schedule.