Rain, Snorkeling and Beach Party

Questeria at Warderick Wells
Questeria at Warderick Wells

There was no wind last night and it was hot. We started out sleeping in the cockpit where it was cooler, and we went down below when it cooled off a little. I got up at 6:00am and was sitting outside and it started to rain. We scrambled to close everything up. It rained on and off until about 9:00am.

At 10:00am our neighbor, Dave from Margaritaville invited us to go snorkeling with him. (Our dinghy is still not running.) It was about slack tide so it was perfect timing. We had been there once before but the current was ripping and we didn’t go to far from the dinghy, so we didn’t see much. This time we saw a bunch more, including a reef shark, a lobster, some big grouper, a ray, some skates and squirrel fish.

Later on Dave and Linda, from Margaritaville, picked us up again to take to a cruisers’ beach party. We met lots of great people. We enjoyed talking to everyone, especially Robin and Corbett on Cookie Monster.

Dinghy Problems

Warderick Wells
Warderick Wells

Our dinghy wouldn’t start on Saturday afternoon and we got towed back to Questeria by Kathy and Patrick, from Marathon, FL. On Sunday it was too rough to pull it up on the davits so we had to tow it behind us as we went to Warderick Wells for more protection from the wind. Today we got around to looking at and it still wouldn’t start. We tried all the usual things, but still no luck. It was time to drag out the book. We followed the ways for trouble shooting with an ohmmeter and found the ignition coil was bad. We tried to jury rig a fix, but the measurements were still off. So we went swimming and will look at it tomorrow. We still need a new ignition coil, but maybe we can make this to work until we get back to the states.

Rough Weather

Waves at Shroud Cay
Waves at Shroud Cay

Last night at about 2:00am the winds and seas picked up and we were rockin’ and rollin’. We tried to get in the marina in Highborne Cay, but they didn’t have anything available. So we went back to Warderick Wells, where we know its protected.We will stay here a day or two until we think the weather settles down.

track20150426.kmz (Download and open in Google Earth)

Hawksbill Cay and Shroud Cay

Driftwood Beach at Shroud Cay
Driftwood Beach at Shroud Cay

Today we woke to calm winds in Hawksbill Cay. We put the dinghy down and explored some beaches and caves. Then we pulled the dinghy up and went to Shroud Cay. It was less than 5 miles. We put the dinghy back down and went through the creek to Driftwood Beach. Last time there was no one there, but this time it was packed with big charter boats. We stayed for a while anyway and the went back to a more secluded beach. After that we anchored the dinghy and snorkeled on some corral heads. When we got back in the dinghy, the motor would not start.

It was not all bad because some other cruisers came by and towed us back. They were also from Marathon. We invited them on our boat and shared some beer. We enjoyed talking with them.

Tomorrow we will stay here and I will see if I can get the dinghy motor working.

track20150425.kmz (Download and open in Google Earth)

Hawksbill Cay

Sunset at Hawksbill Cay
Sunset at Hawksbill Cay

We planned to stay in Warderick Wells one more day, but today started out with rain showers and the water was a little too rough for snorkeling after that. So we went to Hawksbill Cay. We decided to try the North mooring field this time since we stayed in the South mooring field on the way down. There were three mooring balls here and two of them were occupied. Shortly after we got here it started to rain, but just enough to make us shut everything up. Then we opened up everything and tried to cool down the boat.

track20150424.kmz (Download and open in Google Earth)

Snorkeling

Emerald Rock at Warderick Wells
Emerald Rock at Warderick Wells

We are still in Warderick Wells. Today was calm and clear. A great day for snorkeling. We started off at Radar Rock, on a dinghy mooring, but the current was strong so we went to the three dinghy moorings off Emerald Rock. They were great. We went back to Questeria to eat some lunch and rest a bit, then we went to the coral reefs off Beryl’s Beach. We had to anchor in the sand next to the reefs but these were also awesome snorkeling. Next we went to Rendezvous Beach just to sit in the water. We tried going to Termite Beach, but I think it is named this because it is so small that only termite would be able to use it.

Free Boat Wash

Warderick Wells
Warderick Wells

Today we got a free boat wash. It rained. But we had to run the generator so we didn’t get any free electricity from our solar panels. We had to close everything so we didn’t get free air-conditioning from the wind. So now Questeria has been thoroughly rinsed and we want the sun to come out so we can play on the beach and go snorkeling.

We did get to go to the beach at 4:30pm. The sun came out, the winds died and the water was smooth. It was great.

Emerald Rock

Emerald Rock at Warderick Wells
Emerald Rock at Warderick Wells

Today we left Staniel Cay. We were thinking of going to Samson Cay, but you are not allowed to go to the beaches, so we decided to go back to Warderick Wells. This time we decided to take a mooring ball in the Emerald Rock mooring field. Our engine ran a lot cooler today. We had the jib out and we did over 6 knots most of the way. We picked a mooring ball and tied up to it and then spotted our friends on The Journey. So we moved to a ball closer to them. They were surprised to see us.

We wanted to go to one of the beaches here, but it was a little rough at first. Once it calmed down a little there were black storm clouds coming toward us and we heard thunder. We just floated behind Questeria to cool off. We never did get rain.

We will probably stay here three nights. We want to try some other snorkeling spots.

track20150421.kmz (Download and open in Google Earth)

Chore Day

Staniel Cay
Staniel Cay

Today was chore day on Questeria. We ran the generator and did laundry and we flushed out the heat exchanger. We are hoping that the engine will run cooler than its been running. (Because of the heat exchanger, not the clean sheets and towels.) That took all morning. Then we gathered all the trash from two weeks, since Nassau, and put it in a bag in the dinghy.

We took the trash into the marina (one large bag) and paid $7 plus tax to dump it. Most places here charge to dump trash so we have been real conservative.

While in town we also bought more fresh produce and freshly baked bread, mailed a letter, used the free WiFi and added $100 more to our prepaid phone. Then we came back and sat in the water in our noodle chairs.

More party boats came in and anchored on top of us today. The one from yesterday is still playing loud Spanish music and now another one keeps blowing their horn. We thought about moving but we were here first and we plan to leave tomorrow any way.

Staniel Cay

Pig Beach at Staniel Cay
Pig Beach at Staniel Cay

We’re still in Staniel Cay. The day started out awesome. We took the dinghy into town and did some stuff with the free WiFi at Taste and Sea Cafe. It isn’t open for lunch on the weekend so we met Jean-Marie and Jane for lunch at the Staniel Cay Yacht Club. Fran and I split an order of conch fritters and a conch po’ boy sandwich. it was delicious.

After that we took the dinghy to the “pig beach”. There was one pig that came out to greet us. He probably watched us eat bacon for breakfast. We decided to not land the dinghy because there were lot of seagulls there too. We did take pictures of the pig.

Then we inflated our floaties and floated off the boat. Several boats came by and commented that we looked like a corona commercial.

The only bad thing here is that a lot of big party boats came in today and anchored near us. Some of them are rude, buzzing us with their jet skis and playing loud Spanish music. Otherwise, the place really great. We hope they leave soon.