A Hitchhikers Guide to the Bahamas
17 March 2017 | Staniel Cay
We are in Staniel Cay in the Exumas filling our stores in advance of our push further south. After having spent the last 10 days in the remote Exumas Park, swimming, kayaking and hiking, this tiny place feels both exciting and overwhelming with its megayachts, private jets and the endless wakes from oversized tenders that only know one speed. Amidst the din, there labored Tammy and I in our nine-foot inflatable dinghy, ferrying water in two, pitiful jerry cans back and forth from the anchorage to the fuel dock. Eight times.
In Eleuthera, we enjoyed a wonderful cruise with its friendly, open people, beaches, hiking and even a cave. We rediscovered the art of hitchhiking, which is how everyone gets around. I had read about this in a cruising guide, but until we threw out our thumbs on the road, I didn't quite believe it would be a part of our journey. The first car that came by was full. They slowed down to apologize! The third car picked us up. On our return, a pickup truck offered us a ride before we could even ask.
After riding out a storm in Rock Sound we weighed anchor and set sail to the Exumas. We have spent the last 10 days marveling at these magical waters, which even circumnavigators will tell you are the most beautiful in the world. We have enjoyed excellent weather. Wind has been moderate and northerly, which has allowed us to sail SE against the prevailing winds. My fuel tank remains filled with diesel we took on in Florida.
Water, however, has been another story. It has not rained in three weeks, and we rely upon rain to fill our 100-gallon water tank. If we conserve, Tammy and I can survive 4 weeks on a tank. Three weeks is more comfortable. Hence our long afternoon ferrying water here at Staniel Cay.
Right now, a weak front is moving through bringing NE winds at 25 kts through the weekend. Our anchor is well set, Tammy is sleeping and I will be soon. Our plan is to push south tomorrow despite what will surely be messy conditions on the Exumas Bank.