Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Exumas Shimmer Under the Sun

Looking over our shoulders at Ship Channel Cut

From Davis Harbour in Eleuthera our cruising route takes us south down the Exumas chain of islands in the Bahamas. A chance meeting with Judy and Buck who were preparing to leave Davis aboard their sport fishing boat Addiction, changed our minds about the cut we’d take to enter the chain from Exuma Sound. We’ve had winds over 20 knots over the past couple of weeks and as a result the sea states will be high. We decided against Highborne Cut in favour of Ship Channel Cut because it is wider and should be easier to navigate.

We timed our crossing well and managed just fine with the wind behind us and waves six to ten feet. When we looked back at the line of breaking waves from the relative calm waters at Ship Channel Cay, we were glad we weren’t having to attempt a crossing in the opposite direction.

First stop, the northern end of the chain, Allan’s Cay, to check out the iguanas on the beach.

Highborne Cay, Exumas

Daisie tries to do her duty at Highborne

Norman's Cay was once lorded over by a drug baron. Only wrecked planes and bullet-ridden ruins remain of those days.

Daisie loves a game of running back and forth on the beach at Norman's.

Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park

The view is not the only reward at the end of a long dinghy ride through the mangroves and a climb up the hill on the Sound side of Shroud Cay.

A barracuda swims lazily past us and the mangroves in the Land and Sea Park.
All on land and in the sea are protected here.

Look, no barnacles! Our bottom paint is doing it's job.

Can the water possibly get any more beautiful? When the water is still you could see a starfish twenty feet below! The further south we go the more amazed we become by the clarity and hue; to describe the sight of the water in varied hues as blue, cobalt or tourquoise just does not do any justice to the experience. There’s a shimmering irridesence to the water against the sand and sky that can’t be captured in words or pictures.

At anchor, Bristol Rose and our dinghy (center) in Warderick Wells, the park headquarters.

The mooring field in Warderick Wells is a narrow channel and reservations are taken on VHF channel 09 at 9.00am each day. A stop here is full of wonderful surprises including sweet little birds that feed right out of your hand.

This curly-tailed lizard is a real poser. It was a pleasure to take his picture.

Bristol Rose and Starshine (l-r)

Two Shannons in one anchorage! That's a beautiful sight. At Norman’s Cay we finally catch up with Dave aboard his gorgeous Shannon 38, Starshine. At 26 years or thereabouts, she’s still a stunner. These Shannons are semi-custom, built to last and hold up well over the years. We met Dave in Maryland at the marina where we had found Bristol Rose for sale. We’ve kept in contact and celebrated Memorial Day 2008 with Starshine on the Chesapeake Bay. Dave left the Bay about a week before us and we've finally caught up with him. He's headed to George Town so we'll see him along the way.


Here we are reflecting upon the water. No apologies for the pun.

1 comment:

  1. Hey - just enjoying your notes and pictures on The Exumas. We expect to depart for Highborne April 1. Watch for us if you are still around - S/V Freyja, home port, Islamorada, The Florida Keys. Check us out at