Night Music Between the Majors

Ambler Isle
V and S
Fri 28 Jan 2011 13:21
Jan. 23, 2011
t was not a big blow.  But coming out of the north to northeast at 15-20k it created a little chop in our little bay between the Majors near Staniel Cay.  At 10pm the VHF buzzed with the news of a boat dragging anchor.  It was a 40ish sailboat.  Most boaters were asleep, and all were dark except for anchor lights.  We looked outside to see it careening wildly, trying to reset anchor in the wind.  It neared another sail boat but did not hit it.  Then it came up to a new 50' Saberline power boat, Steadfast.  This time it was not so lucky.  It hit with a sickening thud.  After a few minutes of shouting and gesturing, the sail boat settled in not far from shore and the anchor held.  This created a tension in the entire anchorage.  Anchor alarms were set, anchor watch schedules arranged.  We finally went to bed, but it was an uneasy night for us, too.  What if we dragged anchor? Would we collide with another boat, drag into the shallows, or just drag out through the cut to the ocean?  With these questions on our minds, we took turns waking to check our position.  The wind and the tidal currents competed to take charge of our direction, swinging us around til we awoke facing a totally new direction.  By 9am next morning, almost every boat had left the anchorage, looking for a more peaceful one.  We moved, too.  Back to the west side of the Big Majors Spot.  We'd hoped to go to Blackpoint, but another cold front will arrive on Wednesday.  We may have to return to our anchorage between the Majors for a few more days.  The dragging boat met with the power boat, and they seemed to part amiably.  We heard (on our snoop radio) the victim say he was looking for touch up paint, and praising the captain of the offending boat for her quick actions in avoiding a worse accident.  It was, after all, an accident.  And who knows when we may be on the wrong side of it the next big blow?