A Step Forward and a Step Back

The weather rules. If you’re a cruising sailor it’s all about the weather. We left Warderick Wells southbound with a good long range forecast with moderate easterly winds. East winds are important here in the Exumas because it can be hard to find an anchorage that is protected from other directions. After a couple of days at Big Majors Spot near Staniel Cay we got the news that a weather front with strong west winds was expected. Not knowing where else to go to find protection, we retreated 20 miles to the north back to Cambridge Cay in the Exuma Land and Sea Park. We were able to get a mooring there and found good protection from the weather. 

Rainbow at Cambridge Cay


We were boat bound much of our stay but did manage to do some snorkeling a couple of days. 

The Sea Aquarium at Cambridge Cay

One site was called the Sea Aquarium. Many people feed the fish here and they come looking for handouts. Pretty strange to have a Sergeant Major swimming inches from your mask. 

Another site that we went to was the caves at the Rocky Dundas. These caves must be visited at low slack tide so you can find the entrances and then not get battered by the current once inside. 

Elkhorn Coral at the Rocky Dundas


Rocky Dundas Cave Entrance


Inside One of the Caves

Phebe had wanted to see the Iguanas at Allens Cay but we missed them due to our chosen route from Eleuthera. Thank goodness for Bitter Guana Cay. Bitter Guana is protected habitat for these endangered Iguanas and is lesser known than Allens Cay. We had the anchorage and the beach to ourselves and it was wonderful. There was a single Iguana on the beach when we got ashore but slowly more and more came out of the brush until there were 15 of them around us. Thankfully, they were only assertive and not aggressive. The larger ones were about 4 feet long including the tail. 

White Cliffs on Bitter Guana


A Handsome Iguana



We made our way next to the settlement of Black Point. Black Point is known to be cruiser friendly and to have one of the few laundromats in the Exumas. Not your typical laundry day when you arrive and depart by dinghy. 

A Laundromat with a View

Resident Lizard


The people of Black Point were welcoming and we enjoyed our stay there. 

Looking Down the Street in Black Point

Typical Black Point House


Dinghy docks can be a bit of a challenge sometimes. They’re usually high to begin with and a low tide will make it more of a challenge. Add wind and current and things get even more interesting. The dinghy dock at Black Point was also where the fisherman clean their catch, bringing in a fun group of scavengers. A harmless enough group but you still want to pay attention going down the ladder. 

Rays and Nurse Sharks Under the Dinghy Dock


Ladder at the Dinghy Dock


We met James at the regatta site. He saw us wandering around and came to greet us. We didn’t buy any of his shells but he still wanted to have his picture taken with us. 

Our New Friend James

18 thoughts on “A Step Forward and a Step Back

  1. WOW! You’re livin’ the dream! As I look out at the snow and mud here in Montana, it’s a thrill to see you snorkeling and to see the coral, fish and the “handsome” iguana. And a laundromat with a view!! Could you ask for anything more?!! You guys look wonderful! Thank you for sharing all the great photos!

    • I’ll have to do a post on “living the dream ” sometime but then you’ll see that it’s not all glamour out here. No complaints though.

  2. You guys look great the weather is bad here too we where lucky to scoot in to the Marina here — they had a 3 day race and were Very lucky to get a slip – stay safe you two

    • It will be jun to catch up with you this summer and swap stories. We’ve been mostly boat bound for the last few days. Winds 20-30 and gusting higher. We’re thankful for a secure anchorage. Now if we just had a dinghy that would give a dry ride. Enjoy your marina time with wifi, showers, and the other perks.

  3. Thanks for the fun update. The winds have been giving folks a challenge from what we have heard. A sailboat hit something and sank in St Andrews Sound just south, those trying to leave for the Bahamas have been waiting for a window and yet we have had it easy here. A manatee joined us here at BLM today. I will try to pass my ham test on Saturday then we will take the car home, returning back for Tango near end of the month. Keep up the great trip and sharing. Love it! Hope the weather stops blowing so much. That is always life on a sailboat. The wind is too light, too strong or from the wrong direction. 😂 Warm regards, s/v Tango crew.

    • Very true about the sailors view that the wind is never quite right. Good luck with the ham test. What class of license are you testing for. We’ve been so happy to have the hf radio and to be licensed for the ham bands. I was able to get Winlink and Winmore to work quite well for free email and GRIBS. Very nice.

  4. Just think of all the memories you will have stored up for the future! Glad you are sharing your adventure and travels with us! Just got more snow last night – March 8th today – winter is really hanging on this year in Montana! Keep safe, God bless,
    Faye

  5. You guys look like you’re having so much fun! We can’t wait to share some amazing experiences with you! 😊 Glad you’re enjoying yourselves, you both really deserve it!

    Love,
    Jess and Brian ❤️

    • Looking forward to seeing you guys. It’s been real windy the last few days making for some very wet dinghy rides but at least the water is warm.

  6. Ron/Phebe,
    It’s been a lot of water under your keel since dinner that idyllic summer evening on Windigo dock, Isle Royale. You are probably different people by now as the extended cruising changes one in subtle cumulative ways. I saw that you didn’t go into Spanish Wells but were within a mile. It was one of our favorite anchorages and layovers. FWIW, Kalispell is melting, spring is in the air, and we are planning to head back to MI mid April. Will start getting the boats ready for another season on Superior. Fair winds and calm seas. Keep posting.

    • Nice hearing from you Bill. Windigo does seem like a long time ago. Windigo and Lake Superior will always be prominent in our memories. We would both love to have more time there as you said that we would. We’re planning a return to the states for a few months this summer so perhaps we’ll find our way into Spanish Wells on our return trip. We found ourselves with a schedule to keep and inclement weather to get ahead of so we skipped the stop on our way south. George Town is a zoo and not a favorite stop but it is a convenient place to meet guests so we’re spending a lot of time here. Might even stay for the Family Island Regatta at the end of April. Hopefully you enjoyed your full winter in Kalispell and got some good skiing in. Take care.

  7. So neat to find your blog and follow your adventures. Still cold here in Montana, but I’m sure spring will get here eventually. We loved staying at the hikers cabin last winter and never got to thank you two. It was wonderful! Stay safe. Kathy and Ward

  8. Ahoy Phebe and Ron. We are currently back in Portsmouth, VA waiting for wind to stop blowing from the north. Have not seen a recent posting of your adventure and hope you are continuing to have fun. Are you using Chris Parker for weather? Tango took us off shore from Brunswick to Beaufort Inlet to ease our trip north. We enjoyed time in Oriental. Even took in the movie at the old theater. Once this cold front leaves we will explore some southern Bay spots. I took your advise and picked up a spade anchor from their FL office. Was happy to catch a 30% off sale. I also removed my shade cover and removed the board that kept my chain rode forward. You were right. I no longer need a pole to push the chain around so it will fit. Thanks for all your good ideas. Wishing continued fun and laughter for team Noodin. Best! Crew of s/v Tango

  9. Greeting R&P,

    Hope you are grand and having awesome time; I was thinking of so thought I would throw out a line 🙂 I have been golfing up a storm (in storms) we are having the wettest spring I can ever remember, remember playing as kids in the rain, surprisingly I haven’t melted as sweet as I am, anyway have put off mowing the lawn till tonight; yuck.
    Where’s you next stop?

    Wardie

  10. What beautiful photos! You are sure having a grand time! Wouldn’t it be fun if we met up again next fall-spring sometime?

    • It would be fun to meet up again. It’s been much more relaxed for us this year without commitments to meet people. We’re in Georgetown now looking at Long Island, Cat Island, and the Berry’s on the trip north. It all depends on weather so we’ll see. Anyway, keep us posted on your plans.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *