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Sunday, January 27, 2013

Camel Point - Delectable Bay

At Snug Corner we were anchored 1.5 miles offshore and never took our dinghy to land. During much of our stay there the winds held around 30 knots, journeying to shore in our dinghy would have been a fool's errand. Yesterday we jib sailed downwind from Snug Corner to the south side of Camel Point and drug our anchor around in the marl until we could get a hook. The winds had finally clocked east enough for the point to provide protection. We are in a much better position now relative to the shore; unfortunately the settlements are a few miles in either direction. Although reduced (and there is a BIG difference between 20 and 30 knots) it appears the 15 to 20 knot winds will stay with us for many days; therefore we will just have to figure something out about shore leave. The three vessels that were together south of Hog Cay off of Little Exuma (Hold Fast, Straight From the Heart and Dream Catcher) were re-united yesterday at this anchorage and we all welcomed a gathering on one boat to socialize.
All the tuna was eaten a couple of days ago, in style I might add. One day Maryann showed us how to make sushi nachos. It was very simple: chips with tuna on top and wasabi dripped all around. Since chips are hard to come by, Maryann made do with cutting wonton wrappers in half and frying them. Another night Myron and I caked the outside of some chunks of tuna with olive oil, chopped garlic and ginger and grilled it quickly enough to sear just the outside leaving it raw on the inside. Once off the grill, the tuna was sliced up, put on a bed of rice and finally drizzled with a mixture of wasabi and soy sauce. Another variation of this is to add feta cheese to the topping. We had it other ways, but those were our favorites. As I write this, I am longing for another tuna!
Love to all,

Posted via Ham Radio.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Snug Corner

Today we moved to snug corner so far so good the wind is blowing 20-25 kts and it is very sleep able.


Posted via Ham Radio.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Spring Point Settlement - Acklins Island

We repositioned today with the primary goal of getting our data card back in service. Spring Point is the largest settlement on Acklins and they have a BTC office. The ladies in the BTC office were kind and helpful, plugged in our SIM card and put on more time. The magnificent tower we anchored near, however, has not been in service since December. Twice BTC sent a repairman, but no joy. We will be repositioning tomorrow in light of some forecasted winds from the northeast, maybe we can get service from the Lovely Bay tower. We shall see. In the meantime, HAM radio it is.

We spent several hours in the settlement today, mostly with Copeland (Copey) Rolle at Marphane and Uncle Tom's bar/restaurant. We were his only dining patrons, allowing him to give us almost all of his attention and the scoop on the area, him and his family. The supply boat has only been by once since the new year. Copey was down to a few cases of soda, no veggies or beer, and just about out of cooking gas. He said he will make bread on a wood fire if he has too. Copey is also the lay minister for the local church. Services on Sunday start at 7:30 am and go for an hour, and then the priest must move along the island for other churches. Copey also stands in as a bush doctor when local medical services are not available. He showed us the Cascarilla tree, the bark of which he uses to reduce a fever, and other plants he uses to address bronchitis and diabetes. It was a pleasure to spend time with Copey and the turkey and rice he prepared really hit the spot. We paid for our meal but Copey insisted on treating us to our sodas. We were amazed at his kindness and generosity. So often we experience that those with less are more willing to share. Copey was formerly on the Royal police force in Nassau, and a body guard for the Prime Minister. He says he is glad to be back in his childhood community where there is no crime.

Finding good sand to anchor in has been a challenge, we mostly encounter hard marl. I do hope we can find a comfortable anchorage for the coming winds because I would really like to spend several weeks in this kind community.

Love to all,

Posted via Ham Radio.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Long Cay

It was very rolly in our anchorage. Maryann said that 'Straight From the Heart' was rolling regularly 20 degrees and sometimes 25. Simply put, it was uncomfortable. Somehow both Myron and I managed to get in about 7 hours of sleep. It goes to show the helpfulness of exhaustion.

As we rounded the point this morning, it looked like it might be another tough day. The seas were steep and from multiple directions. We pressed on though, motivated by the thought of a smooth anchorage. Praise God, the seas laid down and it ended up being a spectacularly beautiful day. Unfortunately, even though we fished all day, we did not catch anything. We did see our first blue footed boobies. I have not seen those since the Sea of Cortez, Mexico. We also saw several frigate birds. We hope fishing improves and will have to find some other source of food while we are in the Bight of Acklins.

We dropped anchor after 2 pm and are trying to get weather and figure out what we will do tomorrow. Our computer phone connection quit working, so everything will be by HAM until we sort that out.

I think one word describes this place: remote. This bay is HUGE and wide open. There are many shallows which limits our travel but also tames the fetch. First priority is meal, shower and rest. We will figure out the rest later.

Love to all,

Posted via Ham Radio.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

South Point - Long Island

Last night's stay at Dollar Harbor was good, except we did get a swell coming in the opening during high tide. Not much of a problem, just makes you get up and see if everything is alright. When I got up at 4 am to take a look outside, I did a double take and realized I was looking at all points on the Southern Cross. I knew I woke Myron when I got up so I shared this information with him through the aft companionway. He was out of bed and on deck in a flash! Then he went to the port side of the deck and saw the Big Dipper that points to Polaris in the north sky. It was a big sailor celestial night for us!

Today we departed as early as we could get light, in an attempt to beat an ebbing tide. We were doing well on the exit from Dollar Harbor until a one foot roller took our water and Hold Fast skidded on sand bottom. It was only a soft and brief contact that barely slowed her down. I was glad once we were back in deeper water. We fished today but did not catch. We lost another lure, leader and swivel after something took it for a hard run, we assumed shark again. Those sharks are costing us a bit of money in lures.

No Shari sailing today. It was a rough day on the water which makes just about any anchorage welcoming. There is a swell making its way around the point and into our anchorage. We spent about two hours employing various tricks to get Hold Fast to stay bow to swell, but with a current and fluky wind - nothing would hold her bow-to. We finally put all the gear away and reminded ourselves it was just for one night. At this point, we are stern to the swell. Go figure.

There was absolutely no civilization near our anchorage last night, and tonight seems much the same. I guess we have really taken an unbeaten path. Even so, I thought I spied through my binocs a new Batelco tower (Bahamas phone) on the coast a couple miles back from South Point and that is how we hope to post this blog and get our weather forecast. Times are changing!

Not sure where we will end up tomorrow. I hope the Acklins. I will tell you where we are when we get there!

Love to all,

Posted via 3G.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Dollar Harbour

We were certainly disappointed this morning when the forecast changed and showed wind and waves on the nose. Our target was South Point, aptly named as the southern most point on Long Island. We were never going to make it that far before nightfall under these conditions. We considered going to the Jumentos, but we are glad we continued with the original plan. As we turned at Nuevitas Rocks, Myron began to get the lures out. The pink and black lure was only about ten feet behind the boat when we accidentally caught a barracuda. It took some time to get our lure back and get rid of the fish. Shortly after that, with both lures towing, we had something hit the pink and black and run pretty good, then it really ran hard. Myron noticed we had another fish on the blue and white tuna plug. I was reeling that in while Myron was trying to get the other reel under control. We lost the pink and black lure, leader and swivel. On the blue and white tuna plug we had a tuna. Our theory is that we had two tunas and attracted a shark, which really made one of the tunas run but the shark took it all from us. Tomorrow the winds will be a little lighter, if the forecast holds, and we will go fishing the edge of the deep water again.

Bruce and Gina on Dream Catcher preceded us into the anchorage today and radioed to us the depths they saw about 3/4 through a flood tide. The most shallow they saw was six foot. We are glad we gave this anchorage a try. It is quite stunning at low tide with the blue water and white sands. We are snug here and hoping for a good night's sleep.

Tuna for dinner was a special treat tonight!

Love to all,

Posted via Ham Radio.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Hog Cay

Yesterday was a big day of preparing Hold Fast to sail the seas again. We had been toiling away on projects while we waited for a weather window to head to points south and east. It is amazing how many tools and 'stuff' (such as 'Beauty' the light duty sewing machine) gets scattered around when we are at anchor for any length of time. Today was the first day in about 3 weeks that we did not have strong southeast winds so we took advantage of it. As you can see by our tracks, we made our way around White Cay through the Comer Channel to the south side of Hog Cay where we are protected from a mild north wind. We enjoyed a couple hours of 'Shari sailing,' flat seas and under 15 knots, but we also spent time motor sailing while we made over 200 gallons of water. The route is a shallow one and sometimes the water was so calm we could see starfish on the bottom. We were joined on today's trip by Don and Maryann on 'Straight From the Heart' and Bruce and Gina on 'Dream Catcher.'

No one is launching a dinghy to go visiting as we all expect to rise early and be somewhere else tomorrow evening.

I wish all our travel days could be as wonderful as today!

Love to all,

Posted via 3G.