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17 February 2012 | Raccoon Cay, Ragged Islands
We sailed another 34 nautical miles, mostly south. We followed the lee side of the curving Jumentoes/Ragged Islands chains. I'm not sure when it changes from the Jumentoes to the Raggeds, there are two wide channels. We went past them both, so we are definitely in the Ragged Islands now. We are closer to Cuba than to Thompson Bay on Long Island.
Raccoon Cay is bigger than Flamingo Cay, the beach where we are anchored in House Bay is one of the most beautiful I've seen. Bud is reserving judgment until he sees if the fishing is as good as at Flamingo. There are only 7 boats anchored here tonight, but this area isn't nearly as deserted as it was a few years ago. The charts are good and more people are venturing down. There aren't really any secure harbors here for a bad blow, but if something really bad was brewing we could reach Georgetown in three (long) days. There's nothing too much in the forecast for the next ten days or so, so for us it's just a matter of planning on the best sailing days back to Thompson Bay (2 days for us if we had to) before the next front or our water runs out. Since we don't have a watermaker, water will probably be what limits our stay.
In any case, we are enjoying it while we're here. The sailing was more brisk than we expected, but we were able to sail the whole way. I gave Fuzzy a half a Dramamine early on as the places where we passed the open water channels were pretty rolly. The first one only lasted a couple of miles, but was the roughest due to wind and current. The second was about 5 miles wide, but the wind had backed off just a bit and we timed it so the tide would just be starting back in, so the wind and tide were going the same direction.
I'm getting some beautiful pictures of the area. I'm anxious to have internet so I can add photos to all these postings and update the gallery.
Bud was just fishing off the boat in the dark again and caught another Margate. He didn't get this one released in time, so we're going to try eating it. If we like it, we can have Margate almost every night, because it seems that all Bud has to do to catch them is throw a line off the boat once it gets dark.