Sunday, 3 June 2012

Bahamas - the Abacos

Hi from Clare,                                                           Friday 1st June 2015

When last I wrote, we were anchored in Nassau harbour waiting for a low pressure system to pass. However it didn't pass but developed into Tropical Storm Beryl. It is still very early in the season and Beryl is in fact the first Tropical Storm to hit Florida in the month of May.

Christopher Columbus outside Govt. House Nassau and an old Colonial building

For us it has meant torrential rain and wind squalls every day. The sun comes out intermittently and so we go ashore to sight-see or shop. It's quite funny really as our timing has been hopeless. We have managed to get wet every day. However the biggest problem in Nassau is poor drainage. The streets flood quickly and the water covers many large potholes, uneven footpaths, open drains and broken culverts. The only safe way to move is shuffle hoping to feel the edge of a hole before falling in it.

Day one sight-seeing and day two shopping, watch out for potholes!

We are now the proud owners of two dive tanks. We brought our regulators and BCD's to the boat in February and so we are now set. The tanks are stored in the bilge after much rearranging. The boat is a bit like a giant jigsaw, it's not easy to move or include a new piece. We hope to do some diving in the Abacos as well as the Caribbean and Pacific in the future.

We left Nassau on Monday night after saying goodbye to our sailing buddies.
Norna, Ventana and Blue Moon are going home to America to work after long term cruising. I can't imagine what that would be like. Tactical is hauling out in Florida and flying home to Oz for a few months and Innamorata is staying in Nassau with English friends who are residents. We will miss the company, the games and drinks together but I'm sure we will meet new friends as we go along.

So we are now in the Abaco and our only companion is Beryl. It is currently bucketing rain but we did manage a walk this morning without getting wet.
We are in Marsh Harbour (Abaco) which is the third biggest town in the Bahamas after Nassau and Georgetown. It is quite a trendy little village with smart shops and lovely bars and restaurants along the foreshore. I haven't been to the supermarket yet but I am told it is first class as everything comes from America. Marsh Harbour has many American owned holiday homes as it is only a short plane flight from Florida. Yesterday we went into a large American hardware store, all systemized with huge stocks. We haven't seen anything like it elsewhere in the Caribbean or Bahamas.

Marsh Harbour trendy village shops 

The harbour is very shallow. We draw 2.1metres and we touch the bottom at low tide. We have bought the Explorer Chart Books for the Bahamas and Abaco. These are necessary as the electronic charts, although pricey, lack the fine detail in the Bahamas. The shallow water is certainly a new experience, most of this harbour ranges from 1.6 to 2.4 metres at low tide.

We are hoping to leave Marsh Harbour and explore some of the reef islands nearby. At this stage it looks like we will be in the Abacos for a week or so waiting for the right weather pattern to make the 500 mile trip to Beaufort, North Carolina. I know we are missing a lot of the coast but we intend picking it up on our way back. At this stage we are focused of heading north and out of the hurricane belt.

Love Candy xx

PS. Posting this has taken half a day due to the very slow connection speed hereAt 10:57 PM1/06/2012 (utc) our position was 26°32.84'N 077°03.58'W

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