This blog chronicles the adventures of the sailing vessel Moonraker. We just finished the second year of our cruising life. We explored the US East Coast from Maine to Florida, the Bahamas, Haiti, PR, and the Virgin Islands.

19 May 2016 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
06 April 2016 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
13 February 2016 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
21 January 2016 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
09 December 2015 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, MD
05 November 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
22 October 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
01 October 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
14 August 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
15 July 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
08 June 2015 | Hillsmere Shores Marina, Annapolis, Maryland
26 May 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
14 May 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
09 March 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
17 February 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
08 January 2015 | Annapolis, Maryland
08 December 2014 | Annapolis, Maryland
31 October 2014 | Annapolis, Maryland
20 October 2014 | Annapolis, Maryland
04 October 2014 | Port Annapolis Marina, Annapolis, Maryland

Hope Town to Green Turtle Cay

23 March 2013 | Black Sound, Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas
We spent three days in Hope Town and could easily have stayed longer. We toured the lighthouse - see picture above, snorkeled in the ocean - which made us appreciate our snorkeling in the Exumas even more, walked all along the island and the beach, had a couple of restaurant meals, and had dinner on a friend’s boat. We met even more really nice cruisers and spent some time talking to them in town and on their boats. We are nearing the end of our time in the Bahamas though so we had to think about moving closer to our departure port so when the weather was right we could go. With that in mind we looked at our situation yesterday and realized we were almost out of water, our holding tank was full, and most importantly, the weather was going to get bad over the next few days making the cut we had to get through to go north difficult. Time to leave.

Everything really does revolve around the weather. We knew what kind of wind was coming and from what direction. Every day Bill analyzes the weather report and looks at the various places we can go, and those places we want to go, and decides where we should head next. We knew we had to go past the Whale Cut yesterday because it was very passable and wouldn’t be if we waited. We wanted to check out Green Turtle Cay which is another popular destination. It also was a good place for the wind that was coming, especially since we would likely be on a mooring.

These popular towns are often centered around a relatively small inner harbor. There isn’t much room inside them so locals set moorings at reasonable distances from each other and charge a daily price to use them. If you go into the harbor and there are no moorings you need to go back out to the open water around the harbor and anchor in much less protection. We were lucky in Hope Town because our friend Muffin had grabbed a mooring for us when she knew we were heading over. To reserve a mooring people tie different things on the mooring ball and you are supposed to know that means it’s taken. When we got into Black Sound in Green Turtle Cay we saw that almost all the moorings were taken. There was one open that had a bottle tied to it, but we weren’t sure that wasn’t how they all were. We took it and were settling ourselves when the boat next to us told us the people on that mooring were just out making water. You generally don’t want to use your watermaker in these little harbors – the water is always cleaner outside. We let the mooring go and headed further into the harbor. We were lucky, there was one more mooring left. We took it and when we were settled we went and asked the boat next to us, a boat we had listened to on the VHF for the past few weeks, if they knew anything about the moorings. They pointed us in the right direction for information. We found just enough to know that no one was using the mooring and it was strong enough for our boat. Good! This was where we were staying for the next two days at least. We went back to the other boat to drop off our boat card and they invited us on for Happy Hour. We had a great time talking to them and when we went to get back in our dinghy I missed getting completely in for the first time ever. I just dunked my foot and my leg. I don’t think I had too much wine, I just miscalculated. Sometimes it is just not that easy getting on to or off of boats, or docks for that matter, and into the little dinghy!

Today it is raining. We are having a lazy morning and are hoping to have it clear up so we can go check out the town of New Plymouth and Green Turtle Cay.
Vessel Name: Moonraker
Vessel Make/Model: Bayfield 40
Hailing Port: Annapolis, MD
Crew: Bill & Donna Shuman
This blog will record our adventures as we continue our new cruising life. This summer (2013) we plan to head north and explore the coasts of Maine and Nova Scotia. We will return to Annapolis in the fall for the SSCA GAM and then head south on the ICW to Florida. [...]
Moonraker was built in 1986 and had two owners before we bought her in 2005. After spending nearly two years on the hard making all the repairs and improvements that I had promised Donna we wouldn’t have to do if we bought her, we were finally ready to go sailing. For the next several years we [...]
Moonraker's Photos - Main
30 Photos
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Who: Bill & Donna Shuman
Port: Annapolis, MD

Where in the World is Moonraker

Our Boat

Moonraker is a 1986 Bayfield 40 designed by the famous Ted Gozzard and built in Ontario, Canada. The rig is a cutter/ketch. Here are some of her specs:

LOA: 45 ft. 6 in.
LWL: 30 ft. 6 in.
Beam: 12 ft.
Draft: 4 ft. 11 in.
Displacement: 21,000 lbs.
Ballast: 8,200 lbs.
Sail Area: 1,009 sq. ft.

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