Moonraker

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

Caving in Little Farmers Cay

14 January 2014 | Rudder Cut Cay, Exumas, Bahamas
Donna
Yesterday we left Black Point and went just a little further south to Little Farmers Cay. We anchored behind two other sailboats in a small area of deep water and it really was very beautiful. The water is different colors in the Bahamas based on how deep it is, it’s surprising how obvious it is. A little while later the French Canadian cruisers came in. There must have been four or five boats that are all travelling together.

We decided to go to shore and check out the town. We were the only cruisers there, at least for that afternoon. The cruising guide said to go to the green and white house and ask for Martin to guide us to the cave that Bill has wanted to see since we were in the Bahamas last year. We never made it this far south so we had to settle for a different cave last year. Martin’s father told us that he was in Nassau but his other son could take us to the cave for twenty dollars apiece. That was within our expectations so we said yes, we wanted to go at 9am the next morning. We left to go explore the town. So far I think that Little Farmers Cay is my least favorite Bahamian town. There just wasn’t much to it. On our way back the father found us again and said his other son had something else he wanted to do so he would take us himself for another ten dollars apiece. I think the value he was adding was picking us up on our boat but we didn’t really need that. I guess it was obvious to him we weren’t buying the extra twenty dollar price tag so he dropped it to only five extra dollars apiece. For some reason we said OK but we weren’t that comfortable with it. We told him we would call him on the VHF the next morning at 9am and he could come get us.

This morning we started calling him on the VHF at about 8:50am and continued every five or ten minutes until 9:30am and we never got an answer. At that point we had no confidence he was going to show up, or worse yet, pick us up when we were finished seeing the cave. For $50 we figured he would honor his appointment but what we didn’t count on is that 9am doesn’t mean the same thing to the Bahamians that it means to Bill and me. Bill found the coordinates of the cave on the Internet and we decided to go on our own. At 9:45am we heard the father calling for a radio check on the VHF. I guess he was finally ready to listen for us. Too late. We felt bad about it but in the end it was going to be a total rip-off to pay $50 for not much of a cave.

We drove Moonraker over to Oven Rock which is where you anchor to go to the cave. We pulled the dinghy up on the beach and went in search of the trail to the cave. We were able to find it without much trouble and we walked the twenty or thirty minutes to the cave entrance. It was a pretty cave but not much of it. We have a lot of experience caving in Virginia and West Virginia and we’ve spent as much as eight hours exploring one cave. We were able to see everything you could see without getting in the water in this cave in half an hour. You can see a stalagmite sticking up through the water in the picture above. We were glad we had gone to see the cave and especially glad we hadn’t paid $50 to do it.

On the way back from the cave we took the trail to the sea beach that was nearby. It was a pretty beach but even better than that it was a beach most cruisers can’t get to. We learned last year that searching for sea beans is a great cruiser past time. They are beans that apparently float here from Africa or South or Central America and are supposed to bring you good luck. We were able to find four sea beans on the beach without really trying hard at all! Two heart shaped beans and two hamburger beans! (http://www.beachbeans.com/descriptions.html)

Once we got back to the boat we headed further south and are now anchored off of Rudder Cay. Tomorrow we will go snorkeling and if we are lucky we will get a picture that you will not believe!
Comments
Vessel Name: Moonraker
Vessel Make/Model: Bayfield 40
Hailing Port: Annapolis, MD
Crew: Bill & Donna Shuman
About:
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. [...]
Extra:
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
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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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