A PERIPATETIC JOURNEY
not all who wander are lost
The first day of 2017 began with a beautiful sunrise. After breakfast, we raised the anchor and motored the short distance to Black Point on Great Guana Cay. The harbor was crowded, but with our comparatively shallow draft, we found a spot closer to shore to settle in. We had heard that the coconut bread on this island was the best in the Bahamas, so we went to find out. The baker of the bread is the mother of Lorraine, who owns a cafe on the island. First, we dropped off our garbage and an associated donation to the local school. Finding a place to get rid of garbage is not always easy, especially after weeks of anchoring out and away from docks/marinas that will take it... Next, we set off in search of Lorraine and her mother. We passed a few people in the road and exchanged New Year's greetings, but since it was a Sunday morning, things were pretty quiet - everyone was in church.
When we reached Lorraine's, she was closed (at church), so we continued along the road to explore. The day was sunny and warm and the water views were beautiful. Upon returning to Lorraine's, we found the cafe open, so we went in for lunch. After lunch, Lorraine directed us to the house behind the cafe to find her mother and the famous coconut bread. With bread in hand, we returned to the dinghy, having decided to find a more quiet anchorage to spend the night. After pulling up the anchor, we sailed around the point and further south on Great Guana Cay to Little Bay to spend the night. That afternoon we enjoyed some hiking ashore and elevated views of the sound and bank.
The next morning we experienced passing squalls. After a brief rainy sail, we dropped our anchor at Little Farmer's Cay just offshore of Ty's Sunset Bar and Grill. The anchor looked good, and we were hungry, so we headed to shore for lunch. Ty's is right on the beach so we relaxed and enjoyed the view. Later in the afternoon, we took a very wet dinghy ride (into the wind and waves) to the government dock to find a post office as we had a few things to mail. Kendall found the post office padlocked, but a passerby directed her to the postmistress's house next door. After being invited in by the postmistress's husband, Kendall left the mail on her kitchen table, some with stamps, some without. The postmistress didn't have any stamps in her house, so took payment for the postage on the items needing it and assured us she would stamp and mail them. She was unsure about when the mailboat would next come to the island from Nassau. Hopefully those of you who were intended recipients of those letters will receive them eventually!
The squally weather was not a surprise since we were expecting unsettled conditions for the next couple of days followed by calm conditions later in the week. We were planning a significant passage (up to 2 days and nights) to Turks and Caicos that required us to leave the Exuma Bank through a route between islands into Exuma Sound. These routes between bank and sound are known as the Exuma Cuts. They can be quite calm, or they can be extremely dangerous, such as when the wind is blowing in opposition to the tidal current. When this happens, large standing waves can develop, making the cut dangerous, if not impassable; this is called a 'rage'. A passage through an Exuma cut must take the tide and wind into careful consideration. The cut we had chosen was Galliot Cut, which is known to be a relatively easy one, although careful planning was still important since currents run a few knots at least.
After two nights at Little Farmer's Cay, we woke early to raise the anchor and head for Galliot Cut and our passage to Turks and Caicos.
McGlynn family 5 (Isla, Marin, Eoin, Kendall, and Brian) sailing Counting Stars
Satellite tracking: See where we are and where we have been on this DeLorme InReach map