Hello everyone,

When last we wrote we were still in Cambridge Cay and watching weather. The storm lasted quite a while that time and we were pinned down there for at least a week. Finally the winds died enough that we could move on and we sailed to Norman’s Cay. Friends there had been very successful catching lobster, so we went diving with them. Nothing, nada, not an antenna seen that day! But Murray did spear a couple of fish for dinner.

Later the next day, we sailed to Rose Island, near Nassau. A quiet anchorage with few boats around. At daybreak, we motored out through the cut and into the tongue of the ocean for the 40 mile sail to Royal Island in Eleuthera. Two fishing lines deployed and again nothing! This has been a bad year for fishing.

Early the next morning we headed into Spanish Wells, to the marina. We had 3 weeks worth of laundry, two weeks worth of garbage and empty larders to fill. We arrived at the dock by 9:30 and had the whole day to blitz the jobs. Our friend and local fishing guide/pilot ( the boat type not the flying type ) Woody Perry came in later the same day with a boat load of fish. Murray stood nearby as he cleaned them, holding ziplock bags and looking forlorn. The boat owner gave him some tuna steaks, some mutton snapper and also some dolphin or mahi-mahi. Fresh tuna steaks on the barbie that night!

Woody and his wife Phyllis invited us to their home the next day and we enjoyed a steak dinner with them. It was great to see them again and spend some time with their family.

Back to Royal Island to await a window to head to the Abacos. On the 3 mile trip from Spanish Wells, Murray caught a 10 lb mutton snapper! What a happy guy. 🙂 The weather the next day was iffy, but better than the ones to come, so off we go again.

It is a 70+ mile run, out in the Atlantic with depths up to 5 – 6000 meters. And the waves can be huge. So, of course they were! At times we were heeled over at 30 degrees with waves still towering above us . The wind was 15 to 20 with gusts to 25+. We ran the jib and a triple reefed main and while surfing down waves, saw boat speeds of 9+knots!

Zzzzing went the fishing line and Murray pulled in a lovely 3 ft dolphin fish. I am not sure who was more exhausted by the end of that fight!

Once we reached the Abacos, the next problem was to find a cut through the reef that was safe to enter. Waves were breaking all the way across the first one, so on we went. The second entrance was better, but the swell was still huge. Murray’s steady hand guided us safely into the calm waters of the Sea of Abaco. We continued on to anchor near Tiloo Cay.

During the night, the lightning started. And then the rain and wind. Gusts of 50 knots were recorded, and the winds came from every direction. Our anchor held us securely all night, but we didn’t sleep much.

Friends arrived on the 31st and have rented a house in Great Guanna for a week. So, currently we are anchored nearby and swim, snorkel and visit with them daily.

Plans are to spend most of April in the Abacos, then sail to Cape Canaveral in Florida and make our way up the ICW to the St John River and Jacksonville. The boat will be hauled there and stored for the summer.

And that’s what been happening in our life. What’s up in yours? Stay in touch as we love to get mail.

Murray & Heather