Friday, January 31, 2020

Double Breasted Cay, Ragged Islands, Bahamas

It was a little breezy from the west - so that meant we could snorkel areas that are usually windblown from the east.   Leslie and Ralph getting ready to jump in at a small cay on the east side.

We swam around to the exposed west side of the one lobster there - but the surf was kicking up a bit.  Maybe not the wisest of choices.  This is how it looked at the surface.

We dinghied over to the eastern side of Double Breasted Cay and found a lovely deep reef.  Duane managed to spear two lobsters at one time!  (Ralph had done this a couple of days ago also)  Pretty amazing since sometimes it's difficult just to spear one lobster.

The reef was very nice - with lots of swim thru openings.

Here's the haul for the day.  We weighed the meat after cleaning and it was over 6 pounds.

And I found this beautiful conch shell!

Dinner was on Sojourn - lobster scampi!! 

What If has their watermaker repaired and left Georgetown yesterday.  They are sailing overnight and will be here this afternoon.  We'll be the Three Manta-teers again!!

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Double Breasted Cay, Ragged Islands, Bahamas

Started the day making bread.  Actually, we started last night.  Duane found an interesting method of adding some flavor to bread - it's called Poolish - it's used by the French.  Basically, you just add some yeast to part of the flour/water, mix and let "ferment" overnight.  Then add the remaining ingredients as usual.  Not sure why there are little bubbles on the surface....

But the bread turned out yummy!

Went over to Bluejacket for a chat with Jerry and Donna before heading out to the reefs.

Beautiful Queen Anelfish.  Remember, this photo is not enhanced in any way - they really are that brilliant!

Some pretty coral.  Duane got one good sized fish and a medium size lobster.

Time for sundowners on the beach!

Pretty sunset but no green flash.

Back to the boats to gather up food for dinner on Now & Zen.  Leslie cooked the fish that we'd both caught.  Yummy!   A couple of games of cards and we were ready for relaxing by 8:30PM.

And here's a unique find for me.  I spotted this sea urchin "shell" on the sea floor and asked Duane to dive down and retrieve it.  It's unusual because it's fairly fragile compared to most sea shells and breaks up easily.  

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Double Breasted Cay, Ragged Islands, Bahamas

It's incredibly calm!!  After so much wind earlier this month, we're just amazed at the calmness.

Spent the day snorkeling various areas.  I think we went out around 10AM and got back to the boats at 2:30PM.  We had a pack of Nabs on the dinghy around noon for lunch. 

We're able to go out in the exposed ocean sides of the cays because the surf is so calm.  This is not normally possible with prevailing strong east winds.

I think we went to 5 different reefs during the day.

Here is a lovely ray.

Lovely coral!

A little video of a pretty coral head.

Heading back to the anchorage at Double Breasted Cay.  It is so peaceful and beautiful here.

Now & Zen and Sojourn.

We were so pooped that we missed the happy hour on the beach....maybe we'll catch the next one.

Dinner was on Sojourn - grilled some lobster tails and they were delicious!!! 

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Double Breasted Cay, Ragged Islands, Bahamas

Taking advantage of the calm weather, we went out to the outside reef for a snorkel.  It was good fun, snorkeling in a nice downpour.  But then a shark showed up so we decided to call it a day.  (Duane did get 2 lobsters).  On the ride back, the rain was coming down hard and it stung our eyes.  Leslie had a good idea - we all put our masks on and the ride was much more pleasant.  (Sorry for the water on the camera was raining!!)

Not a lot happened after that....dinner on Now & Zen and a couple of games of cards.

Beautiful sunrise this morning!

Monday, January 27, 2020

Double Breasted Cay, Ragged Islands, Bahamas

Back in internet range!! Over a week with no computer time was kinda nice!

For those of you that get my shortwave radio posts, this will be a repeat of some of the events, but this time with photos and videos.  We got anchored at the north end of Buena Vista Cay and pretty much immediately went snorkeling on some small coral heads nearby.

I saw an interesting shell on the bottom that looked like it might be vacant - so I asked Duane to dive down.

He brought it up, it was a beauty!

But it had a huge hermit crab in it, so it got released back to the ocean floor.

The weather has been hit and miss.  Often sunny but those "occasional showers" kept us closing hatches often.

We moved down to the south end of Buena Vista to be protected from some winds that were forecast.  But the weather at the time was settled and Duane got a good haul of lobsters.

Just lots of snorkeling and relaxing.

Cool ray - if you watch to the end you'll see it bury itself in the sand.

Pretty anchorage!

And lots of interesting coral.

More lobsters!

The other cruisers in the anchorage called on the VHF to organize and impromtu happy hour and bonfire on the beach.  Nice catching up with everyone's activities over the past few days.  Now & Zen joined us there from Georgetown.

The winds were forecast to be pretty large, so several of the local fishing boats anchored among the cruisers to wait it out.

Pretty rainbow in one of the showers.

You guys wonder where all the lobster goes?  Lobster cheese grits for my breakfast!

The two Mantas moved down to Racoon Cay, just south.  Found a pretty little bay to anchor.

Beautiful sunsets.

Saw this bull shark - he circled us a few times but didn't bother us.   Not great for spearing fish.....

And after the bull shark seemed to be gone, we were snorkeling over a small coral head.  This nurse shark (normally not aggressive)  was agitated and actually came up to the surface and approached Duane.  He tapped it on the nose with his spear and it swam away.  We decided we'd had enough shark encounters and swam immediately back to the dinghy.  No more fishing that day.

Had a couple of really nice bonfires with Now & Zen, including roasting of marshmallows!

Just a few on my finds from beachcombing.

And we had really cool encounter.  I saw what I thought was a huge dolphin surface and "blow".  I ran for the camera and caught this whale - really cool and amazing since the water there was shallow - maybe 5-6 feet.

The Bahamian Defense Force was trolling the area,   A Haitian boat had capsized a few weeks ago and unfortunately a few of our friends found two bodies.  So sad.

Now we're at Double Breasted Cay for a few days.  Should be a nice relaxing time.  Looking forward to What If's return from Georgetown once they receive their watermaker part.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Enroute to Buena Vista Cay, Ragged Islands, Bahamas

Up at sunrise, several boats leaving today with favorable winds.

What If is going to Georgetown to retrieve their watermaker part.  They'll rejoin us later.   Persephone is going to bona Vista I believe, and Breeze On is heading to Long Island.

The anchorage looks a little lonely the mist!

Beautiful sail now, wing on wing going about 8 knots.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Hog Cay, Ragged Islands, Bahamas

To start the day, Jerry and Donna picked me up for Donna's water aerobics.  We've been getting together about every other day.

Good fun and you certainly can't beat the view!!

Laundry and water making day.

 Laundry all done, clean sheets on the bed, time to go snorkeling.   Ed and Cathy joined us.  The winds have turned just north enough for us to brave the south reef at Maycock Cay.

Lobster hunting Duane!

Got one!

Ed a-hunting as well.

Dinghies going back across the cut, the winds had picked up a bit.

Just the one decent sized lobster but fun snorkel.  This went in the freezer as Cathy already had our dinner in the works.

After the usual cruiser hour (actually more like 2 hours) at the hut, back to What If for a great meal and game of cards.   Whew....cruising is hard work.