18 December 2017 Georgetown, Bahamas
Sadly it’s time for Dunbar’s parents to leave. And a massive congratulations to them on celebrating their 46th wedding anniversary! After breakfast we dinghy ashore and drop them off for their taxi. We just found out that due to a power outage in Atlanta, there’s been massive disruption, so we’ve got fingers crossed that there flights aren’t delayed. They are flying back to Tampa, and then out to South Africa on the 20th December just in time for Christmas with the family back home. In the afternoon we took the tender to the beach nearby and found a long largely deserted beach to walk on. Being deserted, we decided a skinny dip was in order too!
17 December 2017 Georgetown, Bahamas
We set out exploring aboard Swipe Right (our tender!). We check out the boats moored in the hurricane holes, before finding our way to the Chat and Chill beach. We watch as our local fisherman makes a conch salad for us from scratch, showing us how to detach the conch from it’s shell, and then how to gut it. We then tender over to Georgetown proper, but it’s Sunday and there’s very little happening. We make our way back to Tada and enjoy some lunch. Dad then helped me install our new spinnaker pole track.
16 December 2017 Georgetown, Bahamas
We take advantage of the 15-20 knot northeasterly to make the entire 60NM sail down to Georgetown in one day. We arrive just before sunset and anchor in front of the monument hill for some well needed protection for the wind.
15 December 2017 Big Majors Cay, Bahamas
We snorkel the Grotto Cave which is amazing, but as the weather’s chilly we don’t stay long. We then do some paddleboarding and visit the cute little piggies on Pig Beach.
14 December 2017 Staniel Cay, Bahamas
We spend the morning exploring the Warderick Wells island, before making our way back outside and sailing for Staniel Cay. After arriving we make our way ashore and check out the nurse sharks and stingrays by the Staniel Cay Yacht Club marina dock, and enjoy a few sundowners.
13 December 2017 Warderick Wells, Exuma Land and Sea Park, Bahamas
After an enjoyable morning exploring Boot Cay and snorkelling the DC3 wreck, we leave the anchorage and make for the outer east side of the Exuma chain where we sail down to Warderick Wells. Its a well protected anchorage inside the lagoon, where we pick up a mooring ball. We have time for a quick walk up to Boo-boo hill where we watch the sunset and admire the stunning scenery.
12 December 2017 Normans Cay, Bahamas
We have a leisurely motor down to the south end of Norman’s Cay, where we pull into the narrow anchorage for the evening, just opposite the sunken DC3 wreck that shows at low tide in the bay.
11 December 2017 Rose Island, Bahamas
We had a super sail reaching all the way down to the east of Providence island and anchored off Rose island just outside Nassau. It offered excellent protection from the northerly wind that had helped us sail south.
10 December 2017 Great Harbour, Berry islands, Bahamas
We attempted to depart the anchorage in 20 knots of wind and choppy waves. Some problems with the windlass though meant we decided to wait it out another day till things calmed down a bit.
9 December 2017 Great Harbour, Berry islands, Bahamas
Swam ashore and enjoyed a long walk along the beach. By early afternoon the wind started to pick up the rain arrived. The anchorage wasn’t as protected as we would have liked and we had a bumpy night.
8 December 2017 Great Harbour, Berry islands, Bahamas
Sailed around to the east side of Great Harbour Cay and anchored in a relatively protected bay. Enjoyed a beautiful evening at anchorage.
7 December 2017 Great Harbour, Berry islands, Bahamas
After a calm night of motoring we arrived in Great Harbour Cay and checked in through customs and immigration at the Great Harbour Cay Marina. We anchored just outside for the night.
6 December 2017 Fort Lauderdale, Florida
After a couple hours delay waiting for our deposit back, we are finally off headed for the Bahamas. The plan is to sail overnight to the Berry islands and check in there. Strong winds are forecast for the weekend so we want to get in and find a safe anchorage before the winds pick up. We have a nice smooth start to our sail with Dunbar’s parents, Jean and Barrie.
5 December 2017 Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Return the rental car… we’re all set to go!
4 December 2017 Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Final day of provisioning at Costco and Walmart. And a quick dinner with our friends Scott and Heidi at Joy’s favourite restaurant Louis Bossie’s on Las Olas.
3 December 2017 Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Braai with the South African family. The homemade boerewors was a hit! Jean and Barrie (Dunbar’s parents) move aboard all ready for our 2 weeks of cruising in the Bahamas.
2 December 2017 Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Beach day with the family, and sunset cruise on the ICW.
1 December 2017 Fort Lauderdale, Florida
The big day finally arrived! Wedding was at the Sea Watch restaurant in Lauderdale by the Sea.
November 2017 Fort Lauderdale, Florida
To be updated soon! November was a busy month rushing around preparing for the wedding and for setting sail for the South Pacific. Our wedding date was set for the 1 December and we aimed to depart as soon after as possible!
31 October 2017 Bulls Island, South Carolina
Picked up our new shiny alternator and departed as soon as we could. Motored through some beautiful country as we made our way towards Charleston. A few very shallow areas along the ICW were carefully negotiated, before pulling in at the Bull Island anchorage right next to the ocean front for the night. We got to enjoy dolphins with our sunset.
27 – 30 October 2017 Georgetown, South Carolina
Took a few days out in Georgetown to lick our wounds. Broken mainfurler, broken alternator, broken grill, broken bilge pump, and then the chartplotter packed up too! 😦 Joy came down for a couple days with one of her killer migraines, and Tropical Storm Philippe passed by up the east coast sending some strong winds our way. So we spent a few days working on the boat and watching Netflix. And a little exploring of Georgetown.
25 & 26 October 2017 Anchored off the ICW, North/South Carolina
Today was meant to be our big venture offshore to make up some time south. However, once we got out of the mouth of the Cape Fear river the wind was closer to the nose than predicted. More westerly, than north-westerly. So we brought the sails in tight and started beating, until suddenly one of the bolts on the mainfurler broke and we quickly had to get the sail in. Without a mainsail we gave up the idea of beating into wind, and retreated back to the ICW with our tails between our legs!
23 & 24 October 2017 Carolina Beach, North Carolina
A lovely 2 night stop in Carolina Beach. They had a great beach and we just spent some timing walking up and down the beach and relaxing. We discovered for $10 we could do as much laundry we liked at the Joyner marina, so we caught up on some much needed laundry. Like getting the red wine stains out of the white bed spread! No names mentioned.
22 October 2017 Anchored off the ICW, North Carolina
21 October 2017 Shackleford Banks, North Carolina
Joy demanded we go see the wild horses on the Shackleford Banks. Apparently there are a 100 of these horses that roam the island freely and play on the beach. Well, we only managed to find 3 hanging around the bushes inland. However it was a fantastic anchorage just off the beach for a very pleasant evening.
20 October 2017 Morehead City, North Carolina
Some beautiful scenery as we motored through North Carolina and a sunset arrival into Morehead City. With plenty of dolphins along the way.
19 October 2017 Belhaven, North Carolina
Today was another long day of motoring. Whilst transiting the 22NM Alligator River – Pungo River canal we tried to get some drone footage. I hadn’t used the drone for a couple months and it seems all the settings reset. Once I had the drone up, it wouldn’t follow the boat. So we had to turn around on the narrow canal and go back and rescue it before the battery died and the drone fell in the water!
18 October 2017 ICW, North Carolina
Today we managed to at least do a bit more sailing. With a nice easterly breeze we managed to reach along at 4 knots most of the way. We anchored just south of the Alligator River Swing Bridge after crossing the Albemarle Sound.
17 October 2017 ICW (Intracoastal Waterway), somewhere in North Carolina
We had a fun day motoring down the ICW. It took a while to figure out the bridges , but soon we felt like old hands making our way south with the rest of the migration of boats.
16 October 2017 Portsmouth, Virginia
Today was a shopping day! 😦 We caught the bus to Walmart where we stocked up with groceries for the next couple of weeks.
15 October 2017 Norfolk, Virginia
We spent the day exploring Norfolk, an old naval town. Later we went to the old Commodore theatre in Portsmouth to watch Bladerunner. The theatre was built in 1945 with an Art Deco theme and we enjoyed dinner whilst we watched the movie. Unfortunately, there was no choice in the movie which wasn’t to Joy’s taste!
14 October 2017 Norfolk, Virginia
We had a fast sail south on a beam reach for most of it. The sea gradually calmed down until the point that we needed to motor again. We came into the Chesapeake Bay and motored down the Elizabeth river at sunset past more naval ships than I’ve ever seen in my life!
13 October 2017 At Sea
We departed Atlantic City Friday morning. As we left the through the inlet we noticed a sailboat up on the beach. The swells were 6-8 feet going out through the inlet and we buried the bow of the boat in a wave a few times. It was a bit hairy going, but we managed to get out okay. We phoned the coastguard to report the sailboat on the beach, who said that it hadn’t gone ashore trying to come in the inlet the night before. Only once we got out further did I realise we had managed to depart on Friday 13th!
12 October 2017 Atlantic City, New Jersey
Waited out some strong easterly winds whilst seeing a bit of Atlantic City. Took a stroll down the famous boardwalk.
11 October 2017 Atlantic City, New Jersey
Sailed through the night to arrive in Atlantic City early Wednesday morning.
9 October 2017 Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey
Still wet and windy 😦 Preparing to leave in the morning and sail south towards Norfolk and then explore some of the ICW.
7 October 2017 Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey
We hunkered down for a wet and windy few days.
6 October 2017 Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey
We met with Dunbar’s aunt Sue who lives in Tom’s River, NJ. She drove to the yacht club and met us and kindly took us out for lunch at Bahr’s Landing close by. After a delicious lunch Sue gave us a quick tour of the area, driving south along the coast.
5 October 2017 Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey
We departed the next morning to make for Sandy Hook further south. After checking the weather it looked like we would have a southerly wind for the next few days, so we decided we would sit tight and wait it out.
4 October 2017 New York, New York!
We had the most fabulous sail down the East River into New York harbour. I had planned to try and be at Hell Gate at slack tide,but we arrived 2 hours early with the tide still flowing strongly. We made fast progress down the East River, maxing out at 10 knots SOG going into Hell Gate. There’s a lot written about how tough Hell Gate can be, but we didn’t have any problems at all. The river is wide and there was little traffic on the river. We anchored next to the Statue of Liberty for a few hours, and then left for a more sheltered anchorage next to the Liberty State Park.
3 October 2017 Port Washington, New York
Urrgghhh, time to fly back to Tada 😦
2 October 2017 Indianapolis, Indiana
We had a lovely walk out in Fort Harrison State Park. We spent the evening eating out with some of Joy’s closest friends from the “Blondtourage”
1 October 2017 Indianapolis, Indiana
Joy’s friends threw a lovely bridal shower for her. We spent the evening having dinner with some of Joy’s friends.
30 September 2017 Indianapolis, Indiana
Joy attended her friend Jen’s baby shower, followed by a small engagement party with Joy’s family in the evening.
29 September 2017 Indianapolis, Indiana
We attended the Pendleton homecoming parade, followed by dinner with Joy’s friend Ashley and husband Todd.
28 September 2017 Indianapolis, Indiana
Departed Newark airport for Indianapolis. Picked up by Joy at the airport, followed by some wedding suit shopping!
27 September 2017 Port Washington, Manhasset Bay, New York
Prepared boat to be left for the week. Trained it into New York for drinks and dinner with a couple old friends from South Africa. Stayed in a hotel in NJ close to the airport ready for the morning’s flight.
26 September 2017 Port Washington, Manhasset Bay, New York
Day working on the boat.
25 September 2017 Port Washington, Manhasset Bay, New York
Day working on the boat, followed by Mets baseball game with Gary.
24 September 2017 Port Washington, Manhasset Bay, New York
Dunbar’s uncle Pete, Vanessa and Chloe came for a sail out in the bay.
23 September 2017 Port Washington, Manhasset Bay, New York
Dinner and drinks out in New York with Gary.
22 September 2017 Port Washington, Manhasset Bay, New York
Joy’s step sister Lesli, husband Christian and their two daughters Zadi and Derian came out for a sail with us. Afterwards Joy went to stay with Lesli and Christian before going to the airport the next day to fly to Indianapolis.
21 September 2017 Port Washington, Manhasset Bay, New York
Took the train into Manhattan and walked around Times Square area. We then met up with Gary and Bob for a few drinks, before walking around Manhattan for a couple hours just before sunset.
20 September 2017 Port Washington, Manhasset Bay, New York
The wind was still blowing 20 knots, but we decided to move on further west. We were the only boat on the Long Island sound and we had a fast sail down to Manhasset Bay. Manhasset Bay turned out to be a fantastic bay and we took one of the free mooring balls offered by the town of Port Washington.
19 September 2017 Oyster Bay, Long Island, New York
Wet windy day. Winds picked up to 25-30 knots.
18 September 2017 Oyster Bay, Long Island, New York
Woke up to a wet, misty morning. Waited until lunchtime for the cloud to lift a bit before setting sail. Had a nice north-easterly blowing about 12 knots which gave us a good sail around to Oyster Bay. We sailed right around into the West Harbor, where we had a wide pick of where to drop anchor. We sailed up to the north side of the bay as the expected winds caused by Jose will come from the north over the next 2 days.
Hurricane Jose is expected to turn right out into the Atlantic and we will only catch the edge of it, but we are still nervous and ready to take down the sails and bimini should the track change.
17 September 2017 Northport, Long Island, New York
Filled up with water and fuel in Port Jefferson before departing for Northport. Approximately a 4 hour sail. Northport Bay was exceptionally busy. Combination of good weather and a weekend had lots of boaters out. We dropped anchor outside the Northport mooring field and went and took a walk through the town.
16 September 2017 Port Jefferson, Long Island, New York
Departed at 7am to catch as much of the east flowing flood tide as we could. Had to cover 40NM. Tried to sail as much as we could, but finally gave up and motored the last few hours arriving at 4pm. Dinghied into town and enjoyed a late afternoon walk through the bustling town. It was busy as a Saturday, and also seems to be a main ferry destination from Connecticut.
15 September 2017 Orient Bay, Long Island, New York
Early morning paddle around Coeccles Bay, followed by a cycle around Shelter Island. We decided to make a start on the long trip to Port Jefferson, eventually dropping anchor just off the north side of Orient Bay for the night. It was a rolly anchorage and neither of us slept too well.
14 September 2017 Coeccles Bay, Shelter Island, Long Island, New York
Had nice sail round to Coeccles Bay. A tricky narrow entrance into the Bay, but once negotiated it was beautiful and calm inside. Still amazed that so much on Long Island is closed up as the season has finished, yet the weather is still so perfect.
13 September 2017 Montauk, Long Island, New York
Arrived in New York State! We sailed for a while but eventually put the engine on and motored into Montauk Harbor. I’m not sure what I was expecting, but I was a little disappointed. Montauk seems predominantly a fishing village, both commercial and sportfishing. We anchored in the bay with a couple other boats. We found out that mooring balls were $120/night on a weekend!
12 September 2017 Block Island, Rhode Island
Spent the day cycling the whole island from the North Lighthouse to the Southeast Lighthouse. We were exhausted by the end of it. Burgers on the grill and an early night.
11 September 2017 Block Island, Rhode Island
Long day of sailing from Cuttyhunk to Block Island, approximately 30NM. Wind started out great with a close reach but then switched round on to the nose. We attempted to beat into the wind for a couple hours, but TaDa does not point very well. After 2 hours we had only got 4NM closer to our destination, so we motored the last 3 hours into Block Island harbour. Put some chicken on the grill and enjoyed the sunset.
10 September 2017 Cuttyhunk Island, Massachusetts
After saying our goodbyes we motored out of Edgartown harbour and then enjoyed great sailing all the way to Cuttyhunk. We anchored on the south side of the island and dinghied into the beach. We had a sunset stroll around the very quaint island.
9 September 2017 Katama Bay, Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
Had lunch with Fred and Cathie Twadelle. We met Fred and Cathie in the BVIs in March and they kindly invited us to get in touch with them in Martha’s Vineyard. We had a lovely lunch at the Seafood Shanty in Edgartown. Fred and Cathie have just been through the traumatic experience of watching Hurricane Irma tear through Nanny Cay in Tortola where there Gulfstar 40 is kept. Their boat was on the hard and has been knocked over, but they don’t have much information other than that at the moment.
8 September 2017 Katama Bay, Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
A trip up the mast, followed by a trip to West Marine for a new wind vane. We got a few tasks done and then did some waterskiing with Dean round Katama Bay. After a lovely dinner with Dean & Becky out in Edgartown, we then met up with the crew of Arva. Dave, Sue, Jon and Tamrika all bought a Lagoon 450 together and are currently cruising the East coast of the US. I first met Jon through Martin from Amara, and indeed all 4 of them sailed with Martin at some stage during Amara’s circumnavigation. Amara was sadly caught up in Hurricane Irma down in Tortola and seems is a total loss.
7 September 2017 Katama Bay, Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
Today we got the bikes and went for a cycle up to Vineyard Haven. We stopped in Oak Bluffs for some lunch, and since our legs were tired, caught the bus back to Edgartown. We had a quiet dinner with Dean and Becky at the house.
6 September 2017 Katama Bay, Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
Dean and Becky returned from New York so we picked them up at the Martha’s Vineyard airport. We went out for dinner and drinks with Dean at the Newes Cafe and then continued the catch up with Becky back on the boat until the early hours of the morning.
5 September 2017 Katama Bay, Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
Joy came down with one of her dreaded migraines, so we spent the day obtaining some prescription medication and just taking it easy on the boat. This has been one of only two migraines in the two months since she did her gut cleanse diet. So it would seem she’s going to be back on the diet very soon! Pat insisted we stay in the house since the guest room was vacant.
4 September 2017 Katama Bay, Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
A beautiful morning welcomed us and we set off for Martha’s Vineyard once again. Once through the rough and tricky Woods Hole pass we switched off the engine and spent 3 hours sailing towards Edgartown. Bob and Pat Snyder were very kind in lending us their private dock in Katama Bay, and also their car. We drove around the island checking out the sites including the Aquinnah cliffs and then did some much needed grocery shopping.
3 September 2017 Hadley Harbor, Woods Hole, Massachusetts
The weather was atrocious with rain and wind all day so we stayed holed up in the boat.
2 September 2017 Hadley Harbor, Woods Hole, Massachusetts
After a fast sail across Cape Cod bay we transited the Cape Cod Canal. We had a nice 2-3 knot current pushing us through. We were making good progress towards Martha’s Vineyard when the engine died. I replaced the fuel filters and bled the fuel lines, but couldn’t get the engine going. Being Labor Day weekend it looked like we might have a long wait to have someone look at it. SeaTow came to our rescue and towed us into Hadley Harbor where we anchored to wait out the weekend. I spent the rest of the afternoon cleaning out the air filter (which hadn’t been done for a quite while and was very blocked). I also changed the oil and oil filters. However I was still unable to get the engine started. I keep a can of starter fluid for the outboard, and thought I would try it out on the diesel engine. I sprayed just a bit through the air intake and sure enough she fired up and started running again.
1 September 2017 Provincetown, Cape Cod, Massachusetts
We spent the day exploring the rainbow village of Provincetown. I especially enjoyed the Pilgrims Monument to the first arrivals aboard the Mayflower in 1620. Especially since my uncle has proven that our family is related to a Samuel Fuller who was aboard the Mayflower. That makes me something like a 12th generation Mayflower arrival!