Hope Town

Lynn & Mike ..around the world
Mike Drinkrow & Lynn v/d Hoven
Thu 25 Jun 2009 00:30
26:32.73N 076:57.77W  Hope Town, Elbow Cay
We are now in the Abacos - the north eastern islands of the Bahamas. We sailed from Nassau to Royal Island, Eleuthera where we spent the night before heading up to Little Harbour on Great Abaco island. The weather has been very unsettled and we hit a huge squall just off the island. The wind was up to 40knots and it was pouring with rain to the extent that it was  "white out" i.e. where you can't see a thing, everything  looks grey. Luckily we had reefed the sails and Mike pointed Indigo into the wind and we hobbled along at 3 knots until the storm cleared enough for us to get into the harbour. As I have mentioned before, it is very shallow here in the Bahamas, and you generally need to eyeball your way into the anchorages ..tricky in a squall.
While in Little Harbour we met another cruiser called Dick - who is 90 years old and still takes his sailboat from Florida to the Bahamas each winter for a few weeks. Incredible!
From Little Harbour we headed north across the Tilloo banks, stopping for a few hours to snorkel on Sandy Cay reef, which is pretty spectacular.
Our next destination was HopeTown, on Elbow Cay.  HopeTown was founded in 1785 by Loyalists fleeing the American Revolution, and their descendants continue to make this village a great attraction with it gorgeous chocolate box architecture and famous light house. The island was pretty cut off from the rest of the world until about 40 years ago when outboard engines become more common.  The lighthouse here is still powered paraffin, and it turns by a weight, similar to a grandfather clock, that is wound up every 90 minutes. The structure, which is candystriped red and white is about 40m high and has a range of 27 kms.
Walking around town ..beautiful flowers and very colourful houses
The famous Elbow Reef Lighthouse
View from the top of the Lighthouse