12/17/12 We left Nassau next for Allen’s Cay. David on s/v Mist sailed along with us. Allen’s Cay is known for their iguanas.
Sailing into the bay, we could see the famous iguanas on the beach. We wasted no time in getting the dinghy in the water and headed for the beach. (See Cole’s post on the iguanas). There were some good snorkeling spots here as well with beautiful coral heads and fish. It is hard to believe Christmas is just around the corner. We put a Christmas tree and decorated it on the boat.
12/19/12 We headed for Norman’s Cay to get protected anchorage from the high winds forecast coming up. We tried to get into Norman’s Pond, which is very protected, but kept getting stopped by the sandy bottom. We knew it was a shallow entrance and several people told us we could make it with our draft. The channels are ever changing and evidently it has filled up enough that 5’ drafts can no longer make it in. We anchored near the submerged plane wreck and dived it at slack tide. Beautiful fish, coral life, stingrays and nurse sharks are living in and around the wreck.
12/20/12 The next day we went to Warderick Wells Cay. You can anchor here, but have to anchor a ways out so we picked up a park mooring ball to be close to the beach and hiking trails. Their mooring balls are regularly maintained so we felt secure here as well with the winds picking up. Warderick Wells is part of the Exuma Land and Sea Park which is a no take zone. Nothing living or dead may be removed from the park. There was beautiful, diverse snorkeling spots here which we went to on several different days. Our favorite spot was called Ranger’s Garden.
The hiking at Warderick covers diverse terrain. We made driftwood placques to leave at BooBoo Hill to appease the wind gods, had fun sticking our heads over the blow holes, made a palm hut, did beach combing and hiked a variety of trails.
There are a variety of beaches here as well. The kids made a palm tree hut on one of them.
The park warden hosts a Christmas dinner at his house every year. He cooks the ham and turkey and everyone brings a dish to pass. Needless to say, the food was fantastic and the cruisers company was even better.
12/27/12 Our next stop was Cambridge Cay and our friends Graeme and Laura on s/v Sweet Chariot joined us. We snorkeled five different sites here, one with a cave, another plane wreck and our favorite place was called The Garden. It was the most beautiful spot we have been to yet. The best part of it was we saw a sea turtle. We watched him peacefully munching sea grass then swam gracefully away.
12/28/12 On to Big Majors Cay after stopping at Staniel Cay to top off on diesel, gas and water, then spend some time seeing the area. We rang in the New Year’s here with some fantastic new cruising friends – Laura, Graeme, Sean, Candi, Nick, Morgan, Chip, Eleana and John.
The winds picked up for a couple days. We are glad we purchased a Rocna anchor and 70′ of chain.
01/02/13 Off to Black Point on Great Guana Cay.
01/04/13 On to White Point to anchor in a bay with boat friends and do some snorkeling and fishing. We explored the beaches and did some hiking as well.
01/06/13 We headed back to Black Point on Great Guana Cay. The winds are supposed to pick up so we are holing up here until the winds drop back to my comfort level. It looks like the winds will stay for a while and we may be here over a week.
Fair Winds ~ Christine