After saying goodbye to Sunset Bay Marina and the dozen or so people helping us off the dock (thanks to the strong easterly breeze), we motored the 6 or so hours down the ICW to north Lake Worth for the night.
You might recall that we spent a few days here this summer when we were hanging out with our friends Katie and Preston. It’s the spot where we have to park the dinghy beside the troll bridge and climb our way up to civilization.
It just so happened that our new friends from New York on s/v Nightingale Tune, Lauren and Brian were anchored there, so we finally got to meet up with them and have dinner. They’re planning to go further south and cross straight to Nassau in a few weeks, but we were together just long enough to eat some excellent pork tacos and take a horrible picture.
The next day, Monday, was shaping up to be the beginning of a weather window across the gulf stream. We opted to wait until Tuesday when both the wind and the waves would be minimal. The only downside being we’d have to motorsail.
No problem. By sunrise we were raising the anchor and heading towards the inlet. The gulf stream was completely benign. We had no issues whatsoever as we raced across the stream, trying to angle our approach onto the Little Bahama Bank such that the 2.5 kt current didn’t push us too far north.
We lucked into a perfect angle and went from over 1000′ of water to about 20′ of water in the span of just a few minutes. At one point it was quite freaky that we could see the line of clear turquoise water up ahead while we were still riding on the deep blue Atlantic water.
Once we made it onto the shallow Little Bahama Bank, we still had nearly 50 miles of motorsailing to go. We’d seen several boats during the crossing and had even spoken with a few of them on the VHF radio, so we were able to follow sv Horizon into the anchorage at Great Sale Cay at nearly midnight.
I was also able to get very familiar with my new Garmin 18xhd radar setup. I could pick out the 5 other boats in the anchorage on radar even though I couldn’t see anything but a few white lights in real life.
Tomorrow we’ll probably get up early and aim for another anchorage before making Green Turtle Cay to clear customs on day 3. Stay tuned…