Nassau heading south. 23.31.74N 75.46.13W

Robin & Jenny Martin
Tue 31 Jan 2012 17:31

Nassau heading south.
After a quick trip to the supermarket and a tidy up we were ready to leave the marina at 10.00. The new alternator working fine and the weather looked good for a sail over to Highborne Cay. Typically after a just a few hours the wind came around to our nose and we had to motor sail from half way if we were to get there in day light. The bank was shallow and it needed eyeball navigation in order to dodge the coral heads. We arrived and got the anchor down as the sun set, and soon settled in. Cottage pie and broccoli with a glass of red wine for supper an early night as we want to get to George Town before the arrival of the forecast front coming in on Monday.

Highborne Cay to Big Major's Spot
More motor sailing the wind being on the nose again. Weaving in and out of sand bars and reefs needing constant attention to the charts and chart plotter but watching the colour of the water also vital as the sand bars have a habit of shifting. Arrived with plenty of daylight in hand and a trip to the shore to see the famous swimming pigs. Being the end of the day they were pretty well fed and just the one strolled/paddled out to see us and gobble up our offerings of veg peelings. Baked brown jack for supper, caught before entering the Exumas park, tasted just like mackerel.

BMS to Rat Cay cut
Beautiful day, blue skies and only a breath of wind - great looks like another day of motoring! Up anchor at 7 and away we go and before we get to Little Farmer's cut we find ourselves in a procession of six. Americans are great at chatting on the VHF, and we listen in on their conversations and get to learn about the weather and sea conditions. So it was with great confidence we head through the cut having learnt the ocean side is "doable" and only 2ft of swell. Of the six yachts two are Brits,
Amazing Grace and Susie Two, after chat on the VHF we learn that they are also heading to Cuba.
With benign weather conditions Rat Cay cut was easy, the narrow deep water clearly visible and we made our way around Pidgeon cay and dropped the anchor in glorious isolation.

RCC to George Town.
Started out after breakfast to get back out through the cut before the tide had built up too much. It's hard to time the tide, we try but never seem to get it right! It seems to swirl around the small cays and can sometimes appear to be coming in more than it's going out! Anyway back out in the Atlantic we have a go at fishing again, a dorado would be good for supper but no luck apart from the big one that got away. We arrive at George Town with an empty bucket.
On our arrival we are spotted by Les & Chris on Pinnacle who give us the low down on the best anchorages and we end up moored nearby away from the mass of yachts off volleyball beach. Good anchorage, deep water and no wind over tide which means Maymio and the other yachts lie comfortably with the wind and none of the wild swinging around. Unfortunately we had missed Jack and Ann from Topsham who had flown home the day before.

George Town
What a place this is! At least 200 boats anchored off Stocking Island and there is still room for more. For most of the boats this is where they will spend their season. They come well repaired with bikes, kayaks and even bring their cats and dogs. The is a highly organised group of folk, mainly Americans and Canadians who setup all manner of events, classes and social gatherings -
no excuses to be bored. For instance, last night at 7 a lady was on the VHF giving and explanation of the night sky and some of the constellations and this morning we can go to yoga, art classes or play softball, and it all happens on the beach. If you come here for a rest you've come to the wrong place.
The dinghy ride across to the town is quite an adventure in our little boat with 2.5 Susuki. A mile and a half is a long way in our tender but the other boaters seem to revel in it, most have this nasty habit of standing up holding onto their painter. It looks good though!