Friday, April 27, 2012

April 27th - Great Sale Cay and Beyond

It's time to start the trip back towards the USA. The route takes us up the east coast of Great Abaco Island and inside all the barrier cays such as Manjack Cay, Allens & Pensacola Cays, Spanish Cay to Crab Cay at the NE tip of Great Abaco. This part of the passage is very sheltered from any seas. Along the route we pass the village of Coopers Town which looks interesting and worthy of a stop on our next trip.
The water has taken on a new clarity, similar to that in the Exumas and we again encounter some white sand bores which we had to go around.

We cut the corner of this one in 12 feet of water.

Five miles west of Crab Cay, this ominous looking rock could easily destry some unsuspecting cruiser's boat in the dark.

What's this? I thought we were still in the norther Bahamas. Did we make a wrong turn somewhere?
A look at the chart confirms our suspicion .... we're at the center of the earth .... but not like the Jules Verne novel.

Let's just go around it and hope we don't fall into some deep blue hole.
With Jan at the helm we head off another forty miles to the west and aim for Great Sale Cay.

The water is still very clear with white sandy bottom with depths of around 4-5 meters.

By afternoon we round Little Sale Cay to port and head down to our anchorage in Great Sale.

The anchroage is well protected and gave us our last Bahamian sunset.

The next morning it was time to leave for the crossing. The weather was forecast at SSE winds 10-15 knots with 1-2 foot seas in the Gulf Stream.
We're going for it, 125 miles to Ft. Pierce, Florida.

As we head out to Little Bahama Bank waypoint (27 07N 79 10W) the seas were calm so it was time for some maintenance on the anchor windlass.

Little Bahama Bank is magical. The water is very clear and is decorated by patterns of light and dark blue.

OK, we're almost at the end of the Bank. Time to get the rod out again to catch an unsuspecting Mahi Mahi ...... Zing!!!! .... Darn .... another barracuda. This one's a little bigger than the last but with a lot more teeth.
Get out the vodka again. A little dental surgery is in order.

Summer is coming to the Bahamas and so are the Americans. It's cooler in the Abacos than in Florida and there is very little humidity.

With a wonderful crossing behind us, we see "Big Daddy" smiling down upon us as the sun sets over Ft. Pierce. We've made it across in 16 hours.

Good bye Bahamas until the next time. It was a blast!!

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