I promised some pictures of our sailing trip to the Exumas so here goes. We were on a 35′ Catalina with another couple ~ Captain Billy and Miss Elaine. Bill went to high school and college with Mr. NCC. Bill and Elaine met in college and then I came along. Their anniversary is a month before ours.
Here is Bill, Mr. NCC and Elaine on one of our island hikes
Some of the islands we anchored off of were private islands and we were not allowed to visit.
Musha Cay is owned by David Copperfield. There is a lovely anchorage there and we stayed one night. A supply boat came in and left a huge shipment so we knew guests would soon be arriving. The next morning a helicopter dropped guests off at the landing pad on the island.
About a mile from the island between Musha Cay and Rudder Cay, David Copperfield has a sunken steel grand piano with a mermaid lounging on the bench. Mr. NCC and Billy snorkeled it. Elaine and I viewed it through the “looky bucket”. It is in 12-15′ of water. The detailing is amazing. The piano bench looks tufted. They had on gloves and wiped some of the algae away and it was shiny.
We also went to Big Major where there are swimming pigs. People come to shore in their dinghy to feed and swim with them ~ not this girl!
Rudder Cay is the island owned by Faith Hill and Tim McGraw. These caves are on their island and their house is barely visible from the water
At Hall’s Pond we saw this sailing vessel. Hall’s is the private island of Johnny Depp. The crew was “spit shining” the boat getting ready for visitors. You can charter the boat and stay on the island for a handsome sum.
The guys snorkeled Thunderball Cave at Staniel Cay. This is where films such as Ron Howard’s ‘Splash’, two James Bond movies, ‘Thunderball’ and ‘Never Say Never Again’ and also in ‘Into the Blue’, which starred Jessica Alba were made.
The best snorkeling was at the Aquarium near Fowl Cay which is a nature reserve. There were so many fish, I felt like I was swimming in an aquarium.
We went ashore at Famer’s Cay and was lucky enough to talk a fisherman out of a Grouper which they cleaned and bagged for us (for a fee, of course!)
Mmmmm fried grouper
We also met a guy who was willing to take Mr. NCC back to Berry Island instead of us sailing all they way back to Georgetown for him to catch a flight. He joined back up with us 5 days later to do the delivery of the boat back to Tampa. His 1-1/2 hour skiff ride ended up taking 2 hours and 45 minutes in pretty “snotty” weather. He rode the entire way standing up and holding on!
We also caught a mahi that fed four two meals plus another day of appetizers. It was caught with a hand line (fishing line wrapped around a cylinder) not a fishing pole and reel.
Here is the Lobster Bill caught before we got there. By the time we arrived lobster was forbidden to be caught. Bill and Elaine were kind enough to save four tails that we had at two meals. We ate very well as you can see. The soda can in the picture gives a perspective of the size of the lobster.
These two yachts were near Staniel Cay when we arrived. Harle and Usher were being used for the Hooter’s calendar photo shoot the day before we arrived. Reports from other cruisers told us the girls were jumping off the boats at Thunderball cave (some topless).
Bell Island was bought in 2009-2010 by Prince Karim Aga Khan. He is doing a major dredging in order to be able to accommodate 150 foot boats.
This is a picture of the home(s) and toys he has on the island already
From these pictures, you probably think the Exumas is modern and “rich”. Most of the islands we visit are just the opposite. Many times we are the only boat and the only people on an island. I much prefer it that way.
Mr. NCC, Billy and I delivered the boat back to Tampa. We sailed from Saturday morning to Monday evening nonstop. We wanted to cross the Gulf Stream during the day. We made it back to Tampa on Thursday evening. During the day we had light winds which picked up at night along with the wave action. We had one night that was a little hairy. The guys had the sails reefed in and the waves were pounding. I did not have to do a turn at the helm that night. They had to switch off every 30 minutes because it was so tiring battling the waves and wind. It started about 7 pm and lasted until 2 am. All and all I enjoyed the experience.
Well, our next trip will be in a couple weeks and we will be on this 70′ sailing yacht.
I sure hope it has electric wenches!