Thursday, May 26, 2011


Great Guana Cay, Abacos, Bahamas 26º39.89N | 77º06.67W

One might argue that our entire visit to the Bahamas has been island hopping. While that's true, up until now, our focus has been much more on the 'island' and less on the 'hopping.' Now, with our sights set on returning to the U.S. for hurricane season, we're playing a game of strategic hopping hopefully putting us in the right place to forge the Gulf Stream when the next weather window opens.

Fortunately for us, our waiting rooms are lovely.

We made a two-hour skip from Hopetown to Great Guana Cay, home of the famous Nippers bar, which was not looking all that famous when we visited, being two of only nine people sipping rum in the afternoon.

In the meantime we are scouring the charts, doing math on distances, trying to decide where to aim when we set out from Great Sale in the Abacos.

Here is the chart with our options:

From Great Sale
to Fort Pierce   112 miles  16-19 hours = easy peasy
to Cape Canaveral   156 miles   22-26 hours = easy
to St. Mary's, GA   286 miles   41-48 hours = a challenge
to Charleston   379 miles 54-63 hours = amazing

The number of hours will vary depending on how long we hitch our boat to the Gulf Stream adding an extra 1-2 knots to our speed. We have yet to make more than a 24-hour passage, but if the conditions are favorable, we're ready to test our mettle.

Yet, it is not us but the weather that will make our decision. Right now, the windows are closed up tight against an indecisive mess off the coast of North Carolina, ruffling up the Gulf Stream with northern winds.

And so we wait, one island at a time.

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