Silver Maple Blog

The Voyage Continues!

Exploring the Islands

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Monday, February 24th to Wednesday, March 12, 2014

After days without internet connectivity we are finally back online today! The islands, the scenery, the water, the fish and the people of the Exuma Islands in the Bahamas are all fantastic, but services are scarce — and where they are available they tend to be very expensive. Regardless, we are having a wonderful time and enjoying the sailing life.

After Little Farmers Cay, we make the ocean passage to Georgetown. The weather is good and that puts us there a few days before our friend Fritz arrives from Switzerland for his visit. Georgetown is sailing central down here. We have never seen so many boats in one place. It’s a bit crazy-busy, so as soon as Fritz is onboard we head out.

Randy at the bar at Farmers Cay with owner Roosevelt

Randy at the bar at Farmers Cay with the owner Roosevelt

So many boats in Georgetown!

So many boats in Georgetown!

Dingy dock mayhem in Georgetown as all the people on sailboats come into town

Dingy dock mayhem in Georgetown as all the people on sailboats come into town

Randy entering the Georgetown sailors' watering hole

Randy entering the Georgetown sailors’ watering hole

We run into Kathy and Jules from Haidi Girl who we met back in Spanish Wells

We run into Kathy and Jules from Haidi Girl (who we met back in Spanish Wells) at the Chat n Chill

Fritz arrives from Switzerland! Randy picks him up in Georgetown and brings him by dingy to where we are anchored.

Fritz arrives from Switzerland! Randy picks him up in Georgetown and brings him by dingy to where we are anchored.

Leaving Georgetown requires an ocean passage. Unfortunately, it’s a very rough day so we give up after a few hours of pounding and pull behind Lee Stocking Island and into an anchorage there to wait out the weather. We are holed up for two nights. Once the weather settles down we head back out. It’s a much better day and we have a good trip to Black Point, where we run into our friends Jodi and Dauphin (on Monarch).

Fritz settles in to the sailing life

Fritz settles in to the sailing life

Sunrise at Black Point with Jodi and Dauphin's boat 'Monarch.'

Sunrise at Black Point with Jodi and Dauphin’s boat ‘Monarch.’

During our week visit with Fritz, we travel to Staniel Cay and swim the Thunderball Grotto to see the amazing number of fish there. We also visit Bitter Guana and find the Iguanas. Later, we head to Compass Cay, where they have sharks in the harbour that you can pat. At Big Major, we see the pigs that swim out to your boat to get a carrot. Very cute!

Endangered Exuma Iguana on Bitter Guana Cay

Endangered Exuma Iguana on Bitter Guana Cay

Fritz and Randy with their new buddies

Fritz and Randy with their new iguana buddies

Fritz, Randy and Lee on Bitter Guana Cay

Fritz, Randy and Lee on Bitter Guana Cay

Randy and Lee with Silver Maple in the background

Randy and Lee with Silver Maple in the background

Silver Maple in the crystal clear waters of the Exumas

Silver Maple in the crystal clear waters of the Exumas

Lee and Fritz enjoying the ride

Lee and Fritz enjoying the ride

Pigs swim out to greet you to get a carrot on Big Major

Pigs swim out to greet you to get a carrot on Big Major

Randy patting the sharks at Compass Cay

Randy patting the sharks at Compass Cay

Lee at the beach on Compass Cay

Lee at the beach on Compass Cay

It’s a very fun week and we really enjoy having Fritz aboard. On Saturday, March 8th we head back to Staniel Cay so Fritz can catch his flight back. Silver Maple is again a two person crew, and we head to Cambridge Cay. At Cambridge Cay, which is back in the Exuma National Land and Sea Park, there is a snorkeling spot called the Sea-quarium. Incredible number of fish there by a small island with a small reef. We spend the afternoon there enjoying all the underwater wildlife. Cambridge Cay is a beautiful spot — one of our favourites in the Bahamas. After a lovely night at Cambridge, we sail to Hawksbill Cay. Hawksbill is also gorgeous. It has some of the most beautiful water we’ve seen yet. Lovely.

Fish at sea-quarium by Cambridge Cay

Fish at sea-quarium by Cambridge Cay

Dinner onboard at Cambridge Cay

Dinner onboard at Cambridge Cay

Silver Maple anchored at Hawkbill Cay

Silver Maple anchored at Hawksbill Cay

View of Hawksbill Cay from the top of the hill on the island

View of Hawksbill Cay from the top of the hill on the island

Sunset at Hawksbill Cay

Sunset at Hawksbill Cay

Leaving Hawksbill at sunrise and heading out for ocean crossing to Eleuthera

Leaving Hawksbill at sunrise and heading out for the ocean crossing to Eleuthera

Captain having his afternoon nap during ocean crossing from Exumas back to Eleuthera

Captain having his afternoon nap during ocean crossing from Exumas back to Eleuthera

In the morning, we make the ocean crossing back to Eleuthera leaving the Exumas and heading back north towards the Abacos. We have a flight booked for mid-April to head back to Canada. Hopefully, spring will have arrived there by then. Fingers crossed!

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