Movin’ on Down – And a Fish is Caught
08 March 2011 | Farmer’s Cay Yacht Club, Little Farmer’s Cay
We decided to leave Black Point today. The wind is supposed to gradually shift from ENE to E to SE over the next couple of days. This morning it was already close to east. Since we're going southeast, we'd prefer the wind to be ENE so we can sail so we decided the sooner we went the better.
Farmer's Cay, where we were headed, is only about 10 miles as the crow flies so we elected not to use the main. The wind was not too strong and played around from the ENE to further east and we sailed for the main leg of the trip. It was a pleasant sail, but we were only going between 4 and 5 knots.
Still, we got to the point where we had to turn in towards shore before noon. Bud didn't want to start in too early, as he didn't want the sun to be in my eyes as we turned east to make our way towards the islands and the cut between. There is no clear-cut deep route from the banks back into the cut between Little and Big Farmer's Cays, where we were headed. So once we doused the sails (genoa and staysail) I went up on the bow with my radio headset on and watched for rocks as Bud turned in. The chart book said to go to where you could lay a course of 90 degrees true to the white house on the hill. At first we couldn't see a white house on the hill. Then I saw what looked like a grey house and checked with the binoculars. With the binoculars I could see that it was a white house, but the side we were looking at was in the shade, so it looked grey. Once Bud was satisfied that was the house, he laid the course. The electronic chart said we were passing over areas that were 5 feet deep at low tide. We were about 18 inches above low tide (and the tide was falling) but Bud never saw anything below 9 feet on the depth gauge.
Once we got close to the island and followed around and got in the cut we could see pretty well where the channel was. Our next problem was to pick up a mooring ball in front of the Farmer's Cay Yacht Club. I wanted to stay there because they have free WiFi, and I was hoping we could get close enough to have Internet aboard. So we headed for the mooring ball closest to the club. Bud brought the boat slowly up to the mooring ball and I looked for the pendant, the line you grab and hook to. I didn't see one, so I just grabbed the mooring ball, itself. Another boat was moored there and it looked like they were tied right at the mooring ball, so I thought perhaps the ball was hooked directly to the end of the pendant. I got the ball and lifted, and the line that came up was pretty small, so I dropped it and told Bud that mooring wouldn't work, we should go to the next one. We didn't like the position of the next one (seemed too exposed to the north) and when I lifted it, I saw the same thing. Meanwhile, the folks who were moored there called us on the radio. Bud told me they said the pendant was tied to the end of the line the mooring ball was on. So we circled back and grabbed the first one again. As soon as I had it, Bud came up and helped me get the pendant aboard. In short order we were secured. And I have Internet on the boat. Yeah! But it's $20/night, not $10, like we thought. The picture is looking at the FCYC from the cockpit of Earendil. Out beyond the club you see the Exuma Banks. (That's now in the gallery - the fish shot having taken precedence as the shot of the day.)
We met our neighbors, Paul and Carol Cook aboard s/v Odysseus. We went ashore and paid and had a look around. We took Fuzzy back ashore after supper and took a bit of a walk. This is a good spot for Fuzzy; there are sand roads, no traffic (no leash) and no burs, either. We are so close to shore that Bud elected to row back and forth both times (we do have the engine on the dink, just in case).
We've moved again and are in another lovely spot enjoying more lovely weather. This is not bad at all.
Late breaking news! First fish is caught by Buddy! He was out after supper in the dark fishing with ham scraps for bait using the pole given to us by Eon Verrill (thanks Eon, TYC comes through again). The fish fought well, but Bud was able to land him into the dinghy, which was tied alongside. He got into the dinghy with a bottle of rum and a butcher knife and was able to subdue the monster which on closer inspection below decks turned out to be a 21 inch Big-Eyed Jack. Fish for dinner tomorrow!!