Exumas – Warderick Wells, Pipe Cay and Black Point

February 5, 2023

There are so many stories to tell, but the sun is shining. We are not bored that’s for sure.

My last post covered our time up until we departed Eleuthera. We crossed over to Warderick Wells on Wednesday (Feb 1) and we were lucky that they had a mooring for us immediately. It was nice to not have to wait outside.

Warderick Wells is inside a park, part of the Bahamas National Trust, and Warderick Wells is one of the jewels of the park system. We were lucky to get a mooring in the entrance to the channel, which is close to everything. The winds make it hard to put the drone up, so we have been using other cameras to get pictures. Here’s one of Home Free moored in the thin strip of navigable water in the park.

The sand is amazing. The sky is amazing. The water is amazing.

We spent three full days in the park and spent some time snorkeling at some of the nearby reefs. There was a nice assortment of pretty fish and we didn’t get eaten by sharks, which is a nice bonus. (We didn’t even see a shark, but in this area, there is a LOT of sand. We did spot a few turtles, some rays and a lot of other little fish. The water was really bumpy and you can see the surge in the video. Being under the water with the fish was pretty relaxing.

There are a number of walking paths throughout the park. Warderick Wells is just a small part of the park, but I thought I would check out one of the paths. Honestly its about as exciting as getting socks for Christmas. It’s a lot of very sharp rocks to a peak which is about 30 feet above sea level to look down on the cool, beautiful, blue water where you were standing 10 minutes earlier. I went back to the dinghy and enjoyed the water from there.

The path. That yellow paint marks the path, but don’t fall, the rocks are sharp.
One of many views. I’m spoiled and the world is full of really interesting vantage points. This isn’t one of them.

After spending a few days in the park and snorkeling every rock they showed on the park information, it was time to move on. We didn’t go very far. I have written in the past about the wonders of Pipe Cay/Hattie Cay and had to show Jinhee how pretty it is.

The sand and water there are beautiful, but we also went to check up on Elie and Sophia who we met a couple of years ago and lived aboard their sailboat at Hattie Cay. Unfortunately for us, they have moved on. Fortunately for Elie he has married Sophia and they now live in Eleuthera. We may not see them this trip, but still so very happy for them. (For those that visit us on Amherst Island, the book on our coffee table is “Bahama Mamas”, and is Sophia’s Book about the matrons of the Bahamas.)

Pipe Cay/Hattie Cay

Knowing that our friends have moved on, this morning, we decided to move on as well. The winds are howling and the current is ‘exciting’ in the heavy winds. Black Point was our destination.

Somewhere along the route, I have become sanguine about weather, and the forecast today was for 17 knot winds. As we travelled South along the west bank of the Exumas, winds clocked in around 30 knots and things were bumpy. Now bumpy on the west bank of the Exumas is not like bumpy on the open ocean, but we also made a decision to tow our dinghy instead of lifting it to the boat deck. We were about 5 miles into our trip when the snap holding the dinghy gave up and decided it wasn’t going to do it’s job anymore. To be fair, I bought the cheap, knock off snap and so, as the saying goes, “you get what you pay for”.

Luckily I had a camera on and noticed the dinghy break away within seconds and we turned to reattach the dinghy to the boat, this time using the infinitely more economical bowline knot. It didn’t slip for the remaining eight miles. Next time we will go back to lifting the dinghy to the boat deck in anything but flat water.

We arrived at Black Point around 10:30 in the morning and it was already packed with boats. Funny enough about 40% of the boats are Canadian flagged. We have already reconnected with Kory on Etsia a former Nordhavn 40 owner and met new friends with Grant and Agnes aboard Mabuahay, a Nordhavn 50 and also from Ontario.

The weather picture is getting far worse. We ‘need’ to make it to Turks and Caicos by February 21st when Andrew will arrive to visit with us, and we were hoping to enjoy some time on some of the outer/southern islands over the next couple of weeks, but the weather looks kinda like this (see picture below) from Tuesday the 7th until at least Wednesday the 15th. We can’t see into the future, but it looks like we will be sheltering here or somewhere close for the next week or so and then making a desperate run for the Turks and Caicos. There are a million islands to visit, and the Acklins and Mayagauna may no longer be on that list. Jinhee has a need for good communications for the next few days anyway so despite some concern about getting to T & C on time, it may suit that we just stay put.

Green arrow at top is where we are – Green arrow at bottom is where we are going. Red is heavy winds!!

All of this activity seems busy, but really, things are settling out, and I have had the time to read and finish my book. My latest was 1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed by Eric Cline. Another good (but technical) read. You can always check out my reading list here: The Reading List.

Another interesting tidbit, as a Nordhavn owner, we have a Starlink product person on our message board and I have been asking for a way to hold my Starlink RV antenna flat without me having to perform surgery on the hardware to disable the motors. (Sorry there is a whole technical discussion behind that statement. I’m just going to let it pass). Sometime in the last 48 hours my RV starlink dish has been held flat and it isn’t moving anymore.

The good news is that my reception appears to be way better. I haven’t confirmed that they have made this possible for others, or if they are just responding to me as an individual customer or if it is just random luck, but it seems to be significantly better. When running through the Black Point anchorage, no other boat’s antenna is being held flat that I saw, and so perhaps I am ‘special’ at least for now.

Finally, we are anchored at Black Point and the featured photo shows the view from shore. It is ridiculously busy here compared to our prior visits. But that’s okay. We have a good anchor hold, reasonable shelter and warm sunshine.

Busy Anchorage

1 thought on “Exumas – Warderick Wells, Pipe Cay and Black Point

  1. So beautiful with the crystal clear water and blue blue skies!

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