Acklins Island, Bahamas

April 11-23, 2021

We are back in the anchorage where we first met the Eastbound Renegades and had that great dive.  We only stayed the afternoon this time, I guess because after sitting in a marina for a month, we were ready to sail.  The wind looked great for the next 24 hours, and then several days of very light wind, so we decided to just up anchor and do an overnight passage to Georgetown.  It was the right decision.  The night watches were gorgeous, with the water full of bio-luminescence again, and a sky full of stars is beautiful and relaxing.  We arrived at Georgetown in the morning with a rising tide, so all very easy, and went right back to our our anchorage spot off Monument Beach.  We got all our stuff done in town – 5 day COVID tests, shopping, dinghy gas, Diet Coke (thank goodness – almost ran out!), and a big chunk of fresh snapper right off the fishing boat.  We both agreed that snapper was the best fish we ever ate.

We met some nice people and dogs at the Chat N Chill, enjoyed the beach and the light wind, and went back to Hooper’s Bay to feed and say good bye to the Green Turtles.  I love those guys.  I guess I’m also getting used to them, because I shook one of their flippers this time.  It felt soft and slippery but not slimy.  The turtle seemed to think that level of harassment was a totally fair trade for some fresh lettuce. After a couple of days we got itchy feet again and, even though the wind was light, we crept up to Rudder Cut Key in 6-8 knots of breeze, using the asymmetrical sail (the one we love, with the dragon on it).  Rudder Cut was great again, and we got some good snorkeling in.  We only stayed the one day, and then another short spinnaker run up to Cambridge Cay, which we skipped on the way down.  We took one of the last moorings in the mooring field, and had an excellent stay.  We met some new boats and enjoyed two very different evenings of sundowners.  One with people from Oyster Bay with whom we had friends in common.  The next evening with a couple from Buffalo, who had lived there their whole lives, and didn’t think it was too cold, LOL.  It was a contrast to see upstate NY vs NYC style socializing.  It made me wonder how people see us.  When we meet people from other places, do they think, typical New Yorkers, Americans, whatever? The light wind meant we used the paddle board and the pool float to great advantage.  We also had an absolutely epic day of snorkeling, and exhausted ourselves, so we earn a day of lounging in the water on the float.  The snorkeling included 4 stops.  First was the Sea Aquarium.  It’s just off a little tiny Cay, where there is a profusion of fish.  The coral is nice too, but we swam through clouds of beautiful reef fish.  Amazing!  So stop 1 was all about the fish.  Stop 2 was totally different.  We dove down on a submerged plane.  It looked like a small Cessna that had flipped upside down, and lost it’s tail.  Cool again, but few fish.  Stop three was marked on the chart as a “coral garden”.  We think perhaps a storm or global warming has majorly damaged it, because only a few bits were still alive, but it was still amazing because there was giant pillar coral, too big to reach around, some large elkhorn coral, and other big fans and what looked like a weird Christmas tree.  I say they should update to the chart to say “elephant graveyard.”  The final stop was another small cay with two caves.  The first cave was similar to Thunderball grotto, except no fish.  The bottom of the cave was just rock.  So very cool, but not as cool as Thunderball.  The second cave was amazing.  I felt like I was in a scene from Pirates of the Caribbean.   It was smaller, with a one small hole in the roof for light, and it sloped up onto a limestone shore that looked melted, with a beam of light shining down on the ledge where you would of course put the treasure chest.  Spectacular.   Outside the cave were lots of fish and coral, so a perfect final stop.

After a couple days, all this perfection got to be too much, so we upped anchor planning to go just 10 miles up to another island in the Land and Sea Park.  The wind was so perfect, we decided to carry on to Highbourne Cay.  It’s the last major Cay in the Exumas, so in a couple days, we will return to New Providence.  There is a chi-chi restaurant at the Highbourne resort, so Jeff is taking me out to dinner later.