Crossing the Banks to Nassau

Many of the Bahamians still transport their wares from the out islands to the big city in the same way their grandfathers before them did, on a traditional sailing barge. On our way across the banks from Norman’s Cay back to Nassau, we passed this barge loaded with all sorts of goods. I wish now that we had adjusted our course to pass closer to them, but we knew we had a fairly long day at the time and didn’t want to stretch it out a lot. I took this photo with the camera zoomed as far as it could go. By the time we realized it was not just another sailboat, we were well on the way to passing them by. No hurry, no worry, Mon. Their laid back lifestyle has a lot going for it. 

Bahamian Sailing Barge
Bahamian Sailing Barge

We used our Globalstar Satellite phone a couple of days earlier to make reservations at the Hurricane Hole Marina in Nassau. On the way down to the Exuma Cays, we stayed at the Nassau Yacht Haven and found the marina to be interesting, but rolly and noisy. It had been quite challenging to bring the boat to the dock with a very swift current running through the entire marina. We felt that spending just a little more money for a secure marina with no current would make our stay a lot more comfortable. You can see the Angel on our MaxSea navigation program tucked in tight to the corner. We were tied up next to the 30 to 40 foot tenders for the mega yachts that were berthed closer to the main facilities. We really didn’t mind because things were nice and quiet down at our end of the world. This is a great marina, and all the employees treated us like royalty. If they saw us walking to or from the boat carrying anything, they would zip up with a golf cart so we wouldn’t have to walk carrying a heavy load. It looked bad, they said. We had a great time while we were here, and it was a nice break before all the long miles back to Florida.
Docked at Hurricane Hole Marina
Docked at Hurricane Hole Marina

This short trip to new places gave us an introduction to cruising by ourselves. Our sail home was pretty uneventful, other than having a boisterous Gulf Stream crossing from Gun Cay to the U.S. coastline, but the Angel handled it in stride. She is really in her element offshore as deep water is where she was meant to live. Other than those few hours, most of the return trip went just like this photo below. I know, it’s a tough life, and I think we were meant to do it!
Sunset at Marathon Cay
Sunset at Marathon Cay

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