Karen

More Fun On The Water

I have been on island about five years now.  There are lots of different water related things to do such as snorkeling, SCUBA diving, night versions of both, jet skis, parasailing, boating…

One thing I hadn’t done before is go fishing.  We have different fishing tournaments here every year.  The US Virgin Islands is actually known for its great sport fishing off of the North Drop and the South Drop.  Some 21 world records in fishing have been set in recent years in the Virgin Islands. 

the fighting chair

the fighting chair

The North Drop is part of the Puerto Rican Trench.  A 6 mile trench  a that runs east to west on the north side of St Thomas.  The ocean runs from where it touches the beaches and cliffs gradually out to a depth of about 300 feet -this happens over approximately 20 miles.  About 20 miles north/north east of St Thomas the bottom suddenly drops to a depth of about 28,000 feet.  (5.2 miles or 8,400 meters).  This is where the big fish hang out.  Some of the best Blue and White Marlin fishing is done here every year.

we caught one

we caught one

The South Drop only goes to a depth of about 12,000 feet.  Shallow compared to the North Drop, but still deep enough to catch Yellowfin Tuna, Blackfin Tuna, Mahi Mahi, and Wahoo.

about 300lbs

about 300lbs

Several boats can be rented  for 1/2 day or full day charters.  For our excursion we went out on a 65 foot fishing vessel with a galley and 2 heads (the lap of luxury) called Prime Time.  The captain and crew were wonderful.

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Karen

St John Hiking

Well, the last hike was so much fun, we went again.  This time my brother and his family are on island so it was a great way to spend the day together in the sun without just sitting on the beach all day drinking (which is ok too!).

For this hike, we took the car ferry from Red Hook on St Thomas to Franks Bay on St John.  The people ferry is now $12.20 per person round trip and the car ferry is $53 round trip.  Since there were five people going and we were headed to the east end of St John it made a lot more sense to ride the car ferry.

Our destination for this hike was Rams Head.  This is a part of the island on the east end that when viewed from the trails looks like a charging ram.  It is an easy to moderate hike.  There is a parking area at the top, a smooth downhill walk to a sandy beach (perfect for a picnic lunch after the hike), after the beach is the Salt Pond, then a moderate trail to the top of Rams Head.  The views from the top of the trail are fantastic!

Make sure to bring plenty of water.  We had a beautiful but overcast day and even I went through almost a gallon of water.  After the hike we went to the car to bring down our packed lunch and enjoyed the rest of the day on the beach.  My friend and my brother went for a long snorkel.  I took a nap on the beach 🙂

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Karen

To Purchase Land on St Thomas

If you have decided that you want to build your own dream home, you must first find the perfect property. There are several beautiful pieces of land available. The closer to the water, the more expensive. We have cliff waterfront, rock beaches, and sand beaches available. There are also parcels farther from the water with beautiful views. These cost a bit less and, since most places are about 15 minutes from any beach, this may be just what you are looking for.

The terrain here is different for every square foot – and it is rock.   A topographical survey (topo)of the land should be performed for an architect to design a house that fits the land.  It is a lot easier to build the house around the rock than to move it.  I have seen some very interesting rock formations incorporated into homes.

Keep in mind the cost of building here is on the high side – between $200-$500 per square foot. This is because everything must be shipped here and we must build for hurricanes. Whether you use poured concrete, concrete block, steel frame (force-10@earthlink.net ), or mixed masonry such as Deltec  (www.asenciosconstruction.com) you will have to build your cistern and septic tank first.

Also, remember that everything has to be shipped to the island – that means materials to build with and items to finish your home. Whatever amount of time you are told it will take to build or ship, assume it will take twice that amount of time to actually get done. Sometimes this is due to workers on “island time”, other times it is because in order to accomplish one thing, something is needed and it is not on island.

Whatever you decide you wish to purchase – home, condo, timeshare, or land – contact your trusty Realtor (that would be me) for listing information.

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