Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Jan.18th,2007-Crossing the Great Bahama Bank

Crossing the Great Bahama Bank to Bullocks Harbor

January 18th 2007

1730 hours…..We’re on our way north to Moselle Bank which is where we will turn east to make our way to Bullocks Harbour. This will be an approximate 80 mile journey which we will do overnight. Bullocks Harbour is in the Northern part of the Berry Islands. We can notice a large difference in the type of seas---smaller swells, however, the winds seem more than just fresh.

We had quite a time watching the Radar all night. We had to be very careful as we were all crossing one another’s paths. At one point we had to slow down and go around a tug pulling a barge and then a freighter snuck up behind us and passed us on our starboard.

At 0700 the next morning we watched the sun come up. It was absolutely beautiful. The water was a beautiful crystal blue and our GPS confirmed we continued to be in water 20 feet deep.

On our arrival at Bullocks Harbour we decided to anchor and wait for the tide to go up before entering the Harbour as the markers were few and far between. It had been a good idea that Randy had called into the marina ahead of time to confirm our arrival and receive our designated slips because when we went to dock the office was closed. There was a couple of local Bahamians watching us arrive and they offered to grab our lines.

The Berry Islands are a cluster of approximately 30 islands and 100 cays. Fewer than 700 Bahamians live in the Berry’s; Great Harbor Cay being the largest in land mass and population. Cruise ships use Great Stirrup Cay as a tropical playground for their guests. This is the primary source of income for the locals.

Between us and the UNWIND crew we hired a man named “Kenny” with his van to be our taxi.(It actually looked like Kenny lived in his van---he told us if anyone asked to tell them he was a friend of ours. Sounded like the actual cab driver was also the mayor—ohh-ohh ) He took us to the other side of the island to snorkel and to try our luck at spearing fish and lobster. No luck. He also took us on a short sight-seeing tour of the island and to the fuel dock to fill our jerry cans with diesel..(the wharf looked too dangerous for us to dock at.)

On the Saturday the docks were full of people. We watched fish boats return and clean fish, lobster, conch. We watched one fellow make fresh conch salad right on the docks. We ordered Conch salads for dinner as this was Paul’s last night as crew on UNWIND. The salad took a bit getting used to as it was quite spicy but it was delicious.

Happy Hour aboard HIGH STATES.
Sunday, Jan.21st
Many people wonder what in the world we do all day. Well, Randy spent the next day setting up what is called NAVTEX. This is a unit that we will use to get our weather forecasts. I watched the Harbor Master open a green coconut. They are a lot easier to slice open and they have a lot more coconut juice inside. This is because the actual coconut has not had time to mature. The coconut inside is in fact a very slimy texture. He said he has a glass a day for medicinal purposes--- helps everything from high blood pressure, low blood pressure, digestive tract, etc., etc. Then it was laundry time. While the laundry was on I started to polish all the stainless on the exterior of the boat..
Before you know it it’s happy hour and we must say we look forward to late afternoon when everyone gets together for a little “R and R.”
Tomorrow we will be off again/ Our destination---back onto the Great Bahama Bank on our way to Chub Cay.

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