Surfing Back to Nassau
On the toes of of 25-35 knot gusts, Mystique sleigh-rode into Nassau yesterday over a 5-7 foot churning, chopping, spitting and spraying sea blue-green sea. For nearly 4 hours she rode her beam reach northeasterly waves at between 7-9 knots....soaked, chilly, and challenged I enjoyed each shivering moment of it. So wild and wonderful, so beautiful and exciting! These are the kinds of days that feed the soul. Despite some boat issues, the weather conditions kept me on my toes the whole return. One of the reasons I loved yesterday.
I departed the Exumas (Highbourne Cay) with some assistance from nearby boat, a Montreal resident Gabriel, cruising with his family steered while I raised the anchor. The day before's minor mishap when I was unable to head Mystique straight into the wind while raising the anchor was not going to happen again. However, just as he arrived in his dinghy to assist me. my port engine failed to start. Of course, it started and ran well the day before. When I could not jump-start it, I still decided my opportunity to leave was then. So with just 1/3 jib and the starboard engine, we were making an easy 6 knots. So without Gabriel's assistance, I might still be in the Exumas. Anchoring in the strong adverse wind and current is not a problem alone, but hoisting an anchor with these conditions is difficult to do solo on a catamaran. The cats are too finicky and frisky in a heavy breeze and want to drift their direction. Land cats can be like that as well.
Around 2:00 pm yesterday with a favorable flooding 3-4 knot tidal current, we entered Nassau's eastern harbor and attempted to anchor twice...both times unsuccessfully. For whatever reason on my third attempt the windlass decided it would not release the anchor chain...it would ascend, but not down???? So after weighing my options, I decided to go to a marina for safety sake and repairs...been working on those two issues today!