Tuesday, May 12, 2015

May 10, 2015 Highbourne Cay to Nassau, Bahamas

This is the navigation chart showing rocks at the red dots.  Upper left is New Providence Island with Nassau.  We are on the lower right and will follow the waypoints-X.  The red line shows the direction our boat is pointed, but the wind moves us in the direction of the green line to Nassau.  The blue water is Exuma Banks and shallow.  the white areas are deeper water-in the thousands of feet.  The right is Exuma Sound and the left is called the "Tongue of the Ocean".  It is between Exuma Banks and Andros Island.   
We have done this trip between Highbourne Cay and Nassau 2 times each way.  There is a nasty field of rocks we have to go through.  And so far, the charts have been correct.  Can you imagine the job of creating those charts.  Someone has to plot where every rock that could be a hazard exists!

We had a nice wind for sailing with our spinnaker sail again today.  Love saving that fuel.  We also decided we’d put up with the traffic in Nassau harbour to save the money from not getting a slip in a marina. 

On our passage today we saw about a dozen dolphins swimming with the boat for about 15 minutes.  Those are the first we have seen in the Bahamas.  Dave said they probably come here for a vacation, too.

On the way here, we were discussing my attempts at making “refrigerator pickles” with our aging cucumbers.  Remember, I am not a cook or chef, just a survivalist.  I was asking Dave for any suggestions or changes.  He is always so nice to say that they taste fine.  But I wanted to know how I could improve them.  So he started out by saying “well, you do have to brace yourself before eating them, because one leg shoots out straight after you bite into them.”  I guess that means I could thin down the vinegar some. 

Then over the last 2 hours of the passage, we listened in on the radio while a boat was in trouble.  They were going the same way we were, but further behind us.  It was a sport fishing boat and had trouble with the rudders freezing up.  Sounds like they had broken apart and weren’t working together.  They were headed back to Nassau to take the owner of the boat to see a doctor or get him on a flight back to the states.  They were talking to BASRA, Bahamian air and sea rescue association.  Since it was Sunday, they couldn’t get them a tow in to Nassau.  But they could get a mechanic out to them on Monday.  They wondered if the sick person could take a high speed rough ride back into Nassau or if they could bring him medication.  They did get the boat running again and made it into Nassau right behind us.   Lesson learned is that BASRA is made of volunteers.  Things don’t happen at the same speed as in the US.  And you better be able to take care of yourself.   Remember, it can happen to you in a car out on the prairie of SD, too.

Either the wind picked up right when we entered the harbor or the wind always funnels through here.  But we had to motor against the wind and current to anchor.  This is a busy harbor with all kinds of boats passing you.  So we expect the boat to rock some tonight.

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