One Day Off Wasn’t Enough

Deans Blue Hole Bahamas

Remember we had a few troubles and needed a day off? It seems that wasn’t enough because the hits keep coming. Basically one day off wasn’t enough for us or Sava.

But first, our break!

We took Saturday afternoon to explore part of Long Island. The dinghy ride to the marina was short and slightly wet. Once there I had to dive into the water a few times to recover my hat and Brian’s sunglasses. Strong wind!

Our dinghy was running out of propane so we needed to get some. The propane supplier takes Saturdays off but said if we came to him he would fill our tank. He was a 25 minute drive away. We could take a taxi but it seemed worth it to rent a car.

Long Island, as previously noted, is long. There are a number of small communities scattered along it on both east and west coasts. We sailed along the east because it is deeper and obstacle free and stopped in the biggest town, Clarence Town, three quarters down the east side of the island.

clarence Town bahamas
View in Clarence Town

Long Island, Bahamas

The population of Long Island is just over 3000. The marina and a resort on the north end get visitors. It is much quieter and more off the beaten path than George Town.

While we were walking the 10 minutes to the car rental place, the driver of one of the only cars we saw stopped to see if we needed a ride. We were outside our destination but that shows what kind of place it is. Everyone we encountered was friendly and kind. We were able to help out a mother and daughter and give them a ride later. Pay it forward.

Long Island is a pretty place. We saw many very well kept churches, farms with adorable goats, and a spectacular natural wonder, Dean’s Blue Hole.

Dean’s Blue Hole

This was another reason we got the rental car. The propane fill was 25 minutes south of the marina/dinghy dock and the swimming hole was 10 minutes north.

Deans Blue Hole Long Island Bahamas
A nice spot in Long Island is Deans Blue Hole

This is more than a swimming hole. It is a natural wonder. In the US or Canada, people would be lining up with their wallets open to visit. In Bahamas, you park and walk onto an almost empty beach. We saw just two groups the whole time we were there: one left soon after we arrived, the other got there as we were departing.

Dean's Blue Hole Bahamas
Underwater at the blue hole

Deans Blue Hole is the second deepest in the world and plunges from shallow sand to over 650 feet/200 meters deep. It is a popular spot for free diving competitions, which would be interesting to see. The water is clear and cool and there are lots of fish. We snorkeled for a bit, and then went for a hike up the cliff to see the view from above. It was definitely worth the visit.

Deans Blue Hole Bahamas
Deans Blue Hole from above

Back to Sailing And Problems

We got up early on Sunday (well it would have been early if not for Daylight Savings Spring Forward. UGH) to set sail for our next destination: Crooked Island. This was going to be a long day and another upwind jog. Fortunately, the weather was nice and the waves were much calmer.

Crooked Island Bahamas map
Our route from Clarence Town to Crooked Island, about 40 knots

Unfortunately, problems continued. This time, 10 hours into our long trip across to Crooked Island, the jib sail ripped off the rigging and started flapping alongside and even behind the boat, held on only by the two sheets. Brian jumped to the bow of the boat while I took the helm. I didn’t know what had happened but Brian jumped into action and directed me to steer into the wind to slow us down. The huge flapping genoa did not help our speed or control.

Finally, Brian and I wrestled the sail onto the boat. It had thoroughly ripped off from the bow. We were about 11 knots away from the anchorage in Crooked Island, it was 5pm, and we had just the main sail left. Fortunately, the wind had picked up a little bit, so the main combined with some engine helped us power sail the last 2 hours into harbor. At least the sun set an hour later yesterday. We anchored just as the sun was setting behind us. What a day! Like I said. The hits they keep on coming.

downed genoa Sava
The genoa after we wrestled it onto the deck

Lots Still To Do

We are both exhausted now, but have to keep working. Living on a boat has so much upkeep, plus we have a growing list of problems. The good news: our anchorage is beautiful and calm, the water is clear, and the weather is great.

Crooked Island Bahamas
Our anchorage off Crooked Island

We also spotted a backup genoa sail in one of Sava’s lockers so we are going to try her out.

One day off wasn’t enough so today we are taking another. We have places to go but we can’t worry about a schedule. We need to get Sava in order and keep ourselves healthy and sane. Cute goats and Domino help. Wish us luck!

Author: Mel

Living aboard a sailboat, scuba diver, cat parent, cyclist, blogger, love the water and exploring new places.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: