Day 30 - Havana Cuba - Bimini Bahamas
Phil, Di and Annelise
Mon 24 Apr 2017 21:17
A fingernail moon finally rose, quickly followed by the cold light of dawn. Soon the suns rays chased the clouds and we were left with only fair weather cumulus on the horizon - it was going to be a hot day with light winds.
Nevertheless, busy shipping lanes of tankers and cargo vessels transiting to Panana, Mexico, U.S. Houston or outwards to Holland Antwerp or Fowley U.K. on their long passages across oceans .. kept us busy in the morning with discussions over the VHF so as to avoid collisions - the bigger ships happy to alter course for us to continue sailing heading.
The daylight also revealed the strange bird calls we had heard during the night tweeting "keep up, keep up (!!)" - Small groups of migratory birds. No bigger than sparrows, just about managing to keep above the waves on their northerly route to mainland Florida - who knows where from. We "picked up" the occasional hitch-hiker - or more correctly the bird selected us to hitch a ride and a rest - refusing food and water, content to sit and rest for a while before continuing its own journey to dry land.
Late in the afternoon the wind had eased and turned south-westerly - a broad reach - ideal for the spinnaker as we were losing time for an evening arrival. But not quite a successful kite flying exercise as it decided to tangle around the forestays once hoisted - partly filled it was giving us lift but not a controllable sail - so no sooner up than down it had to come - in one big sail mass!! The rest of the afternoon was taken up re-packing the sail into its sock.and of course keeping watch! A decision made to practice hoisting on a windless day whilst securely moored to a dockside before trying again!! We were fortunate to escape any sail damage and/or danger to the boat whilst it partly filled.
Land ahoy - the small islands of south and north Bimini were spotted an hour before sunset in a freshening easterly wind - blowing above 20 knots. No place to anchor in the bay of south Bimini - so we slipped into the quite waters of the marinas on north Bimini and dropped the hook near the docks of Bimini Resorts World marina (where we had moored before - courtesy of Marty and Hernan's private dock). After a couple of attempts to get the anchor to dig in - bringing up seaweed and sand on the first few attempts, eventually an excess of anchor chain did the trick. Exhausted from the long sail, a quick prawn stir fry (as darkness had already befallen us) and straight to sleep. Anchor watch alarms set to wake us throughout the night - but thankfully, we stayed in the same place and managed a good rest at the same time.
Phil & Di