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Honduras, Roatan, West End: Further Updates on Anchoring Ban

By Sue Richards last modified Apr 28, 2012 08:22 PM

Published: 2012-04-28 20:22:45
Countries: Honduras

Posted 28 April 2012

Here is the latest update from Roatan. This morning the municipality finally took official action and sent a boat with city officials out to the 10 or so boats in West End and gave them notice that they had to leave immediately. One boat said they are having engine problems and they were told they could stay until their engine is fixed and then they must go.

I want to stress that this has no impact anywhere else on Roatan, there were over 30 boats anchored in French Cay Harbor last week, we are down to about 20 now as some went to West End and others are headed north or south as the season winds down. Things will likely get very quiet here over the next few weeks, many boats are headed for the Rio Dulce or the US for hurricane season.

On the plus side, the water is getting clearer every day and the diving and snorkeling are amazing!

Fair winds,

Wayne & Elly
SV Zeppelin

Posted 21 April 2012

For earlier noonsite news item about the announcement of this ban (dated 30 March 2012) see here

Our thanks to Wayne & Elly Smith of SV Zeppelin and Ken Carrothers, Dockmaster at Fantasy Island Marina, for this update.

Wayne & Elly Smith of SV Zeppelin have been cruising Roatan for the last 3 months, dividing their time between French Harbour and West End. They told us:

"There are 16 moorings still in West Bay right now and no one is enforcing any ban on using the moorings or anchoring. It appears that the Mayor of the Municipality exceeded his authority in trying to ban cruising boats from West End and now no one is actually taking responsibility for the administration of the bay (i.e. there is currently no charge to moor there). Until this is settled there are no restrictions.

"Note however that the Marine Park is deflating the mooring balls and letting the mooring pennants sink until everything is resolved. The moorings are still in place with all the tackle but you have to look for the pennants as there are no floats. Not too difficult considering that the water is 10 feet deep and crystal clear.

"The locals in French Harbour have been assured that there is no intention to restrict anchoring there and in fact there are discussions taking place about placing moorings there to increase available space.

The Municipality of Roatan has no jurisdiction over anything on Roatan east of Second Bight, that half of the island is under a completely different local government. They have made a public announcement that cruising boats are more than welcome to come & anchor anytime and enjoy the island."

Ken Carrothers continues, "The difficulty that everyone has with this entire issue of anchoring out is that the Mayor, council, and every other level of government has failed to issue ANY information publicly. I was told that the Port Captain has declared that there is nothing in the cruising permits issued by his office which would prohibit any boat from anchoring anywhere in Honduran waters".

Wayne and Elly enthuse about Roatan, "It is a fantastic cruising destination with amazing people, scenery, diving, and conveniences and will only continue to get better. We encourage everyone to come and see for themselves".

Email received 19 April

We are one of the last to move from West End, having remained through all the politics of managing the park. The current situation is the mooring balls have been removed leaving the lines floating and attached to the pins. Be aware of these lines when coming into West End; they may drop deep enough making it difficult to pick up with a hook. Come and enjoy the park, support the Marine park by giving a donation allocated to education or infrastructure.

s/v Will-O-the-Wisp