March 1, 2014.
There’s been weather, fishing and socializing. We've met a few interesting couples lately. There were Sam and Heather. He's Lebanese, she's a Brit on the sailing catamaran Cloud Nine. They've been cruising for 24 years and maintain a home in Ghana. Then there were Shane and Maryvonne, a pair of Aussies passing through on their way to Cuba on their 50 foot Beneteau, the s/v Gem. We also met Gathern and Gina a couple from Louisiana down here for their first time on their Prout 39, Lost Marbles. Who knew the Ragged Islands could be such an international crossroads. Our wallows were a whole lot like a meeting of the general assembly of the United Nations. Except for the facts that there was drinking, we all got along and nobody yelled or threw a shoe at anyone. Of course, we have no shoes but you know what I mean.
|3 boats comfortably riding in Johnson Cay|
|The bottom bug is a 1 1/2 pounder like you'd get in a restaurant. The other fella is 6 pounds of excess....|
But I didn't know it. At the end of the day we were headed home I wanted to drop into the water to scout a section called Raphaels Rock.
I'd take a breath, submerge and could cover 50 feet or more before surfacing and going right back down to repeat the process. What I didn't realize was that I had swum off directly into the sun. When they realized that I hadn't shown up near the rock they all started to look around. There may have been a little panic. Because of the sun dancing on the waters surface nobody could see me each time I surfaced while moving further away. Finally Christy surmised that since they couldn't see me anywhere else I must be obscured by the sparkling sunlight. She came blasting in my direction just as I had seen enough to write off Raphael's Rock as a fishing option.
It wasn't until I climbed up into the dink I realized what had happened. She was pissed/ relieved, Kim was upset and Steve was relieved to see me. I had covered about 200 yards pretty quickly and to them had “just disappeared”. It was no big deal but I did feel bad about scaring them.
The wind finally wound through to the northwest so we moved the mile and a bit to Man O' War Bay. Now with the wind from the northwest we had another golden opportunity to hunt a not often hit spot. Man O' War Bay is one of my favorite spots to hunt and the rewards are so great we've done it in some pretty shitty conditions. Once, years ago, was the only opportunity we've ever had to hunt the area just outside the cut.
With the westerly wind the cut was dead flat. The water is between 5 and 20 feet deep and has just the topography I crave when it comes to bug hunting. Since we hadn't been out there in years we decided to give the cut a look see.
I dropped into the water right on top of a Hogfish
so he was spirited away to the Big Red Bucket O' Doom.
After that it was a lobster O'Rama. We missed a few and when we got
out of the water I had another pair just sitting there in plain
sight. Some other time.... We took so many so quickly we had to give
a half dozen away when we got back to the anchorage.
|Peeking under the ledges|
During the night to wind finally came through to the north northeast so in the morning we pulled the hooks and had a glorious downwind sail into the anchorage at Hog Cay. The mailboat comes on Sunday, we have another front to weather in about a week and then the Veranda will start her slow migration northwards.