Winter 2016 2017 Bahamas Cruise



Florida and Bahamas Trip Winter 2016-2017: 1-28 February 2017

Updates in February thru 12 Feb below or review November 2016 thru January 2017 using tabs above

FORMAT CHANGE ... Latest updates on top. To view chronologically start at bottom of page

12 Feb 2017

Ready to move early today as we planned an 84 nautical mile trip to West End where we were to meet up with Gailwinds for the Atlantic crossing to Florida on Monday. We traveled at close to 16 knots most of the day arriving at West End just after 2 pm. Now with internet I checked the weather ... two of the three weather apps I used showed the weather going south on Monday. I talked to Bob on Gailwinds. We decided to move to Florida now ... Sunday afternoon. I fueled Apolonia and got underway. Apolonia had already run 80+ nautical miles getting to West End. Now we were off for another 54 miles to get to Florida ... over 130 NM today. Gailwinds travels a few knots faster so she arrived at Lake Worth just before sunset and made her way to Old Port Cove Marina in the dark. Apolonia was an hour behind and we pulled into Old Port Cove about 8 pm. We had to move carefully into the Lake Worth Inlet as we came in the inlet after dark. We did the admin of checking in via phone for customs and settled down for the evening. Much to do tomorrow ... wash the boat ... do final check in ... and decide what we'll do to finish our winter in the south.

AND this is last update for this trip.  Everyone is back in the US.  Gary and Nancy are traveling with Bob and Gail on Gailwinds to look for a boat for the Vineyards, then they will make other plans to get to their respective homes.  Carey and I will find a spot for Apolonia and will probably do some more traveling as the trip that stopped today cut short what we had originally planned.  We hopefully will do a bit more.

Beautiful travel day today
Apolonia still running great
Racing to get to Florida before dark

11 Feb 2017

Up to a few chores on the boat, then underway for Spanish Cay. We need to be at West End Sunday evening, so had the time to stop at a Cay we've passed 10 times but never stopped at. A mistake. It is the slow season in the Bahamas and there were only two boats stopped at the Spanish Cay Marina, one was ours. But we found a great place. It is a private island owned by a family from Peru. The son and his financee are running the place. The marina and restaurant were spotless and very nice. In the slow season the restaurant is open only for reservations ... we were the only customers and had the best blackened grouper we've every had, cooked by the son, Andy. His financee waited the tables. After arrival we took Maddy on a golf cart ride of the 4 mile island and its three beaches. We'll be back.

Condos at the edge of the marina
South beach
Maddy enjoying the beach
Maddy running on the beach
Apartments in the trees
And more
Tree lined roads

Ocean front Tiki bar
open in busy season
Another beach area

Maddy waiting by golf
cart after beach run
Bar area

Pool and outdoor seating










10 Feb 2017

No pictures, but a great day. First at breakfast, we had an amazing conversation with a waitress about her life here. She lives at Green Turtle Cay 4 days a week in a double-shared room with each room sharing a bathroom with another double occupancy room. The other days of the week she goes home to the Treasure Cay area to be with her husband and 3 children. She is working hard to get out of her pay-check to pay-check life for her family. She was hopeful and it was inspiring to hear her optimism, as she says she is hopeful the tourist traffic increases over what is the case today. Later we met and enjoyed talking to a Canadian father and son who were on a sailboat in the area. They came through Florida and are enjoying the Bahamas. We enjoyed their stories and even found out we both knew a couple from Vero Beach, Toby and JoAnne Jarmin. Can't be a better day being cruisers in the Abacos.

9 Feb 2017

Good day. Carey and I went to our relaxed travel mode and enjoyed our temporary home, Green Turtle Club and Marina. We had a great lunch and met new people. We're enjoying. The high winds forecast is not proving to be as bad as expected but we'll wait a few days before heading to West End as the best crossing day to Florida is still Tuesday.

Yep, we still do laundry
 when needed.
Strong winds make
the flags fly
Landscape at Green
Turtle Club
Pool at Green Turtle Club

Lounge chairs at pool ...
where are the people?
Maddy relaxing


8 Feb 2017

Easy morning as we got ready to move around Whale Cay (ocean passage in and out) to get to Green Turtle Cay. We need to get to West End by next Monday to make the predicted good crossing day on Tuesday. The weekend weather will prohibit moving around Whale Cay through Monday. So we had to move today. We did and the seas were perfect for an easy transit of the Whale. We'll relax in Green Turtle for a few days then move to be in West End by Sunday or Monday. Gailwinds is in Black Sound, Green Turtle Cay and Apolonia is in White Sound, Green Turtle Cay, just north of Black Sound. We'll plan our travels to get to West End on time over the next few days as the weather develops. Saw several sail boats moving today in the 10-15 knot winds we experienced.

Beautiful sailboats

Entrance to White Sound
Green Turtle Cay
Anchored boats in White Sound

7 Feb 2017

Easy trip from SeaSpray to Marsh Harbour for Gailwinds and Apolonia ... just over 10 miles. We are watching the weather forecast so we can move comfortably to Florida. Best scenario is a move past Whale Cay (out in the Ocean) to Green Turtle Cay tomorrow, wait for a cold front to pass (strong winds) over the weekend, then travel to West End on Monday then on to Florida on Tuesday. Let's hope this works ... only the weather will determine if it will. Gary and Nancy got on Gailwinds for the trip to Florida to see how that boat rides. We're on Apolonia with Maddy and ready to travel. Maybe I'll remember the camera tomorrow.

6 Feb 2017

OK, we're up and enjoying SeaSpray Marina. We have had a great trip, but now decided to go back to the states. We'll move to Marsh Harbour tomorrow and based on the weather plan our trip and crossing to the states. We'll then find a place to dock Apolonia in Florida and we'll be looking for a place to buy in Florida. As we get old we make changes in our plans. Ours is now to move to Florida. No pictures today.

5 Feb 2017

Up early as we had to inform marina we were here! We came in late last evening after the dragging anchor event. All was good with the marina. We moved into our slip next to Gailwinds, a great place to be for our joint evening meal and viewing of the Super Bowl. After fixing the inoperative anchor windlass, a short job, we had breakfast at the restaurant then relaxed and prepared for the Superbowl.   What a game. Boring until the 4th quarter, then we sat on the edge of our seats as the Patroits took the lead. Besides an amazing game, Nancy and Gail fixed a fantastic meal ... Carey had done a steak meal at Harbour Town a couple of days ago, so the other two ladies decided to go with fried chicken, potato salad, bean soup, and shrimmp and grits. It was amazing food for the super bowl or any other time.

Nancy cooking fried chicken,
after making the potato
salad and bean soup
Get ready for sunset

Views of SeaSpray Marina
and Resort

More views of area
The marina area at SeaSpray
The new and expanded Tiki Bar
More views of the marina

The parking lot ... more
golf carts than cars
A nice Grand Banks
parked next to us at SeaSpray
Pretty Hatteras parked behind us

My plate of food the ladies fixed

Gailwinds TV we
watched the game on

4 Feb 2017

Up in Marsh Harbour to sunshine and warm temps. We are leaving Harbour View. Gailwinds is headed to Seaspray on Elbow Cay and Apolonia is going to anchor at Tihiti Beach. We both were settled after a 9 nautical mile run ... as Tahiti beach is close to Seaspray. Hambone and Maddy had a great run on Tahiti beach then the four of us (Gary, Nancy, Carey and Phil) headed for Cracker P's for lunch. It was a mile dinghy ride and the seafood chowder was to die for. Homemade Brauts followed the chowder ... excellent. We had a great time eating, drinking and riding in the dinghy. Bob and Gail had dinner at the Seaspray restaurant and reported it was in competition for one of the best restaurants so far. Tomorrow we'll get underway and move into Seaspray marina where the six of us will join up for dinner and viewing of the Super Bowl. Bob has prepared a betting pool we'll use to see who makes some money on the game. Looking forward to tomorrow.


SO NOW SOME NEW INFO. We were relaxing aboard when the anchor alarm said we were dragging anchor ... this at 8:30 PM. We started the engines and let out more anchor chain. No help. The wind had increased a lot and we were still dragging anchor. We decided to pull up the anchor and try to reset it ... now 120 feet of chain out. The windlass stopped working with the anchor still on the bottom and 20 feet of chain left to pull in. Gary pulled the chain and anchor on the boat ... glad there was not more chain out.  We decided to move to SeaSpray Marina ... very dark and a narrow channel that I have not been in before.  Thank goodness for chart plotters.  We moved into the marina safely, tied up and had a well deserved drink.  Before lunch on the 5th Bob, Gary and I found the culprit causing the windlass problem ... a loose wire.  Tightened the nut and all is well again.

Apolonia at
Harbour View
Apolonia's slip mate,
Seaclusion, a 75 foot Hatteras
A rock en route
to Tahiti beach
Chart Plotter showing
our anchorage position
Maddy and Hambone
on Tahiti beach
Gary walking from
the dinghy
Apolonia at anchor
Apolonia's dinghy on the beach
Welcome to Cracker P's
Beautiful beach front
View from Cracker P's
And more views
One more view

Good use of wine
bottle ... a light
Gary and Nancy in dinghy
headed to Apolonia

3 Feb 2017

Up to warm weather and sunshine. It is a maintenance and provisioning day, as we are planning to go south to the Eleuthera and Exuma Island chain as soon as the weather allows. We must cross an open Atlantic Ocean section of water of 55 miles. The ladies did laundry and went to the grocery store. Gary and I washed Apolonia and sanded and varnished the bow rails. All a good day. Bob and Gail did their povisioning. For dinner the six of us went to the Harbour View pool area and used their facilities to cook a great flank steak with sides. We simply had a great time. We're now on board ... almost ready to turn lights out.

Watching sunset from Marsh Harbour

More of the sunset

Just two of the six of us at
 dinner at Harbour View

2 Feb 2017

Clouds threatening rain greeted us this morning. We slowly made preperations for traveling to Marsh Harbour where we will make last minute provisions for our trip next week to the Eleuthreas and Exumas, two island chains south of the Abacos. By 10 AM we were underway ... clouds and light rain and 15 knots of wind gave us 2 foot seas on the bow for our 15 nautical mile trip to Marsh Harbour. Moored by noon after Apolonia filled up with fuel for the trip south. Gailwinds will fuel when we leave here as this is cheapest fuel. All six of us had lunch at Wally's, then the ladies did laundry while Bob and I went to the hardware stores for a few items we needed. Safely aboard and eating on board we settled in. You'll see from the pictures a typical pattern while Apolonia is underway.

Boats at anchor in Treasure Cay

Apolonia headed out the
Treasure Cay channel
View outside Wally's restaurant

Nice, big, expensive sport
fish arriving at Harbour
View Marina
Gary driving

Nancy reading

Carey reading and
drinking coffee

1 Feb 2017

We enjoyed yesterday so much we decided to stay another day. Bob went golfing and I went along as a caddy, driving the golf cart, keeping the score and offering comments. Bob did very well and we both were impressed with the 18 hole golf course. He shot a very respectful 96 and had beautiful drives throughout the morning, with several over 220 yards. We enjoyed. Returned about lunch time and Cary and Gail joined us at the bar for lunch. Gary and Nancy spent most of the day at the beautiful beach and later Gail joined them. We ate on board after a full day and settled in, preparing for our trip to Marsh Harbour tomorrow.

See the bottom as well as the reflection of Gailwinds' bow
Pretty homes on golf course
Bob setting up a 'par' putt
Setting up a long drive
Swinging one of his
220+ yard drives