March 21, 2010.
Hey all. Let me start out my wishing myself a Happy Birthday and yes, we are starting to head north.
Since my birthday was yesterday we had a little get together on the Veranda. Dr. Bob on Savage Son wrote me a prescription for peanut M&M’s while Jay on Far Niente used the opportunity to pass along The Birthday Hat. It was a lovely gesture but I’m looking forward to the next birthday celebration we attend so I can pass it along as well.
We celebrated my birthday anchored in the lee of Rum Cay. How appropriate! The sail down there from Calabash Bay was a long slow sail dead down wind. Everyone else motored over the horizon while Christy and I were content to average just over 4 knots, wing and wing for 25 miles. The last hour of the day the wind built and we had to alter course to the east and we romped along at over 6 knots right into the anchorage.
After a rolly night at anchor we arose, did some boat chores and headed out to do a little hunting. There was mile after mile of reef but very little life about. I felt like a tourist with a spear as I checked one promising ledge after another to no avail. Finally Greg from My Destiny broke the spell by finding and nailing a 5 ½ pound lobster. Greg and Judy just crossed over from the states so this was his first lobster of the year. What a way to start off, it’s gonna be tough to top that.
After Greg broke the ice I took a 4 ½ pounder and a pair of Slipper Lobsters. I’ve seen other guys take Slipper Lobsters before but these 2 were the first of my career. They’re kind of prehistoric looking but supposedly tastier than the regular Spiney Lobsters that we’ve been harvesting. I guess we’ll see.
After hunting we ventured into town. Calling the settlement on Rum Cay a town is a little misleading. It’s more like a spread out village. You walk a bit and find a house. Walk some more and find a grocery store and then a church, etc. We ended up at the marina on Rum Cay. The guy who owns the place spends a lot of time making carvings out of the limestone and brain corals that are so prevalent in the islands. One of the local nurse sharks was scrounging for food scraps below the docks. The entrance into this marina is not for the faint of heart. The channel is a winding affair flanked by shallow coral heads. This wall was topped with a dozen destroyed propellers that didn’t make it into the marina without a coral encounter.
This morning we rose to winds of 20 knots out of the east southeast. We pulled the hooks and sailed the 21 miles northwest to Conception Cay. It was a challenging day as the wind was almost dead behind us once again. It was just off the quarter enough that wing and wing wasn’t an option. But since there was enough wind everybody decided to sail the entire way.
We covered the distance quickly and were pleased to land our first Mahi Mahi……ever. Christy and I make a pretty deadly team when it comes to spearfishing but we’re pretty much inept when the whole fishing rod thing comes into play. It’s the only hit we’ve had in as long as I can remember and Christy reeled him in while I doused the headsail and tightened up the main in an effort to slow the boat down.