Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Island Hopp'n

Panorama - Beach near Fowl Cay

   After spending a few days checking out Bimini, we decided it was time to move on.  Our next stop was Great Harbour (Yes, the British spelling is intentional) in the Berry Islands.

White/Fowl Cay
   As we left the marina, taking advantage of a beautiful day, we were treated to a dolphin escort.  Dolphins love to play around boats but, they hate the noise of an engine. Since we had enough wind to sail in the early part of our journey that day, we were able to provide the perfect playground for these beautiful creatures.  I counted eight dolphins in all.  They were at our stern, playing at the bow, and zooming under the bottom of the boat from port to starboard
and back.

Interesting Rock Formations
Not long after the dolphins left, we were forced to turn on the engine; The wind practically disappeared.  After motoring for a few more hours, we dropped anchor in Great Harbour.  We spent two days here, resting a bit and taking in the sights. Amazingly, we never actually made it to a beach here because we were told that it was way too long of a walk from the dinghy dock (the island proved to be bigger than we thought).
White/Fowl Cay
These Little Snail Were Everywhere

  Our next stop, a day sail over the top of the Berry Islands, was a little place between Fowl Cay and White Cay.  This unique spot offered us a hidey-hole with all-around coverage from the changing winds.  We, of course, enjoyed the beaches here but, the best part of the stay was the blue hole.

The Hole In Question

There's a Path Here  . . .
Somewhere . . . 


   Blue holes are relatively common in the Bahamas.  If you're not familiar with the term, imagine a large crater filled by ocean water that is fed in somewhere near the bottom, surrounded by cliffs, and extremely deep.  This hole in particular was a bit hard to find; There was a path but, it proved hard to follow since there's really no one around to maintain it.  Our cruisers' guide tipped us off to it (we never would have found it otherwise).  We thought about jumping in but, although the entrance was obvious, the exit appeared to be nonexistent.


Washed Up Fan Coral
Crab Skeleton . . . Exoskeleton, Technically


A Shallow Wreck
   Unfortunately, after a few days, our little spot (thanks to some incoming swell) was becoming untenable.  So, we picked up anchor and moved all the way down to Rose Island.  This little spot is just east of Nassau on New Providence Island.

   I was a bit apprehensive about staying here due to a bad experience (REALLY bad swells) the last time we were in the area.  However, that was on the north side and we were on the south side this time.  The winds were better and it showed itself to be a nice spot to stop.

Both of These Wreck are Bahamian Fishing Boats 
See the Fossils in the Rock?

   A couple of days at Rose and it was time to move again. . .  In case you haven't figured it out already,  full-time cruisers still keep a schedule; it just happens to be dictated by the weather instead of a time clock. . . So, this morning we moved into the safety of Palm Cay Marina (outside of Nassau).  There is cold front moving through that is unpredictable enough to stump the weather gurus.  Instead of taking our chances, we've ducked in here for a few nights to ride out whatever the front decides to bring.

   While we're here, we'll take advantage of our surroundings.  We've booked a courtesy car (free with the slip rental) for tomorrow so we can pick up some fresh groceries. . . It will be interesting trying to drive on the "wrong" side of the road . . . We'll definitely be visiting the laundry room while we're here and we figured we'd try to check off a boat project or two while we're in stable waters. The free internet is also, most certainly, a plus.

   Our plan is to head south from here, closing our short-lived chapter on the Berrys. Next up, the Exumas . .
The Red Boat Shows Our Location

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Please let us know what you think. Feel free to ask questions and leave nice comments.