The last Venezuelan island

Monjes del Sur, the last of the Venezuelan offshore islands, is a lonely coastguard outpost some 20 miles off the Columbian coast. I don’t think that many yachts stop here, although it is an ideal staging post between Aruba and Colombia.

About 10 miles out we called the Coast Guard and were cordially invited in. Apart from 2 decrepit fishing boats and the CG officers, we were alone. Away to the southwest the Columbian mountains stood out boldly against the sunset. Seabirds wheeled.

The two Monjes Sur islands have been connected by a huge limestone breakwater, enclosing a rocky, west-facing gulch and a small, snug anchorage. A 2-inch hawser stretches across the head of the inlet and you simply loop a bow line round it and hang back in the ever present easterlies.

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John’s signature pasta dish (fried bacon, garlic and mushrooms) and a Chilean chardonnay capped off today’s fast 60 miler.

From here is is 80 miles to Ensenada Huaracha, an open bay on the Columbian coast. Then a similar distance on to Santa Marta. We’ll probably leave around midnight tonight.

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