The Park and old friends to catch up with
14 March 2009 | Warderick Wells Cay, Exuma Cay Land and Sea Park
Saturday, March 14, 2009
Downloaded pictures in the morning while Wayne went up top and watched the world go by. It was another lovely day so we decided to go snorkeling in this beautiful clear water. Got all the stuff in the boat but by the time we left the currents were coming through here pretty good so we never got into the water. Snorkeling here is done at high slack tide or low slack tide and we weren't at either one. So we dinghied back to the park headquarters and sat about chatting with Rich and Dave (Sea Witch) then exchanged some books at the headquarters and headed back to the boat after splashing around near the beach, for saltwater showers, then sun shower rinses on deck (nothing like being on display).
I made up some chicken salad to take to the happy hour gathering on the beach, then at 5:30 we headed over to the beach where Judy already had a bonfire going and the ice chest set up (I delved in for ice!). Several boats were already there. Sea Sharp is here - we haven't run into them since the Mega Dock in Charllotte (?) It seems so long ago... Raksha from Quebec is also here - we haven't seen them since Annapolis (where that boat ran into them). We'd gotten our mast put up in the same place - Riverview Marina in Catskill NY. It was so good to see both of them. Sea Sharp was in Georgetown for the last 5 weeks and is heading northward again, as is Raksha. Us, we're still heading south for a little while longer. While at the bonfire/happy hour we met Lady Pamela from Cape Cod on the trawler next to us and the folks from the 40ft Bayfield "Tan Barque". We'd watched him climb the mizzenmast to install his wind generator earlier in the day. Joy (Rowan & Chris), the sailboat across the sandbar, was a hoot. Wish they were staying a little longer but they're heading to Eleuthera tomorrow morning.
At sunset we headed back to the boat and sat up top watching the world go by while finishing our drinks. After dark, a large boat came by us and headed to the headquarters. They trained their lights on everything around, and the people at the headquarters turned on the lights and helped them tie up for the night. It turned out that this was a Royal Bahamas Defense Force Vessel. The Game Warden here has had so many death threats against him from poachers, that he has two defense force guards that travel with him and it appears they frequent the park for him. The amount of fish and conch in the Bahamas has been so depleted over the years; that I guess poaching has become a big problem in the park. From yachtsmen trolling improperly in park waters to locals that have favorite hotspots - it's a big problem. This park is teeming with large conch that breed here and cast their spawn outward to help repopulate the outlying Bahamas, the same with the fish populations - so what the Park does here is very important. It's sad to think that between visitors and locals alike that so few care about the future of the islands and their ecological impact on the present as well as the future generations of all of the life forms.