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labatt 03-17-2009 09:54 AM

We're in the Bahamas :)
The ride was a bit rough over... I had to head a bit farther north so we could motorsail without flogging our sails to death. Wind was highly variable between 10-20kts, usually around the 14-17 area. Waves in the morning leaving Biscayne were 4-5ft and short period, so we were pounding for a while. We hit a few 8-9 footers, but that's to be expected on a day with 4-5 footers. I'm glad we took our dorades off and sealed 'em up. The waves actually moderated by the afternoon and became more like 2-3ft. We ended up grounding Pelican trying to get into Bimini Sands Marina at dead low tide (go figure), so we headed south 10 miles to Gun Cay. We dropped the hook in a completely unprotected bay, but it was forecast to be a calm night. That would be why we got hit by a 39.5kt gust and winds were running 20-25kts all night and stirring up a commensurate sea state. It was not a good night, but our Rocna held strong in the sand and we didn't budge at all. I ended up sleeping in the cockput since I couldn't get to sleep in our V-Berth (we were "getting air" off the waves). Today we headed back up to South Bimini, launched the dinghy (not easy to launch a 180lb dinghy off the foredeck and a 120lb motor off of the aft deck when there's seas) and sounded our way in using a handheld depthfinder. And here we are... we put up a blog post at s/v Pelican - Following A Dream.

JohnRPollard 03-17-2009 09:58 AM

Well done, Chris and family!

Sorry about the bumpy night, hopefully you'll make up for it with some restful days now....

night0wl 03-17-2009 10:24 AM

Great news...or should I say chubby news.

Your blogs an inspiration to us still tethered to J-O-B-S

kwaltersmi 03-17-2009 10:25 AM

Nice summary and great blog! How did the kids hold up on the passage to the islands?

imagine2frolic 03-17-2009 10:27 AM

This is funny, I just found your thread where you decide to go. Then I realized at the end that it was you waiting to cross, and I asked where you would go, and now you are in Bimini.

CONGRADULATIONS....I love the Bahamas, and Bimini is only the door. After you pass Nassau it just get lovlier. Some prefer the Abacos, but my preference is the Exumas.....DO NOT miss the Aquarium in the Exumas.....i2f

Brucerobs2 03-17-2009 10:57 AM

Living Vicariously.
We thought that channel entrance was a little treacherous as well. We slipped through with a 5 foot draft, but the heart rate was definitely up the first time through. We also used another channel with range markers to the south of the cut you used that then parallels the beach, although I have heard it has since shoaled a bit. You might ask around for some local knowledge on that, although you now have the other channel down pat. We got bounced around on Gun Cay too, its not very protected in most wind directions. Have a blast. Fair winds.

jrd22 03-17-2009 11:24 AM

Good job Chris, yer livin the dream now! Hope you and the family have a great time.

sailortjk1 03-17-2009 11:25 AM

Sounds like a bouncy ride and a sleep deprived night were well worth the price. Good job Guys. Now, get some sleep and Enjoy yourselves!

Melrna 03-17-2009 06:08 PM

Glad to hear you all made it across. When we cleared the channel the winds and waves where a bit rough. So much for the weather forecast. But you made it and hopefully some experience in that crossing. You went straight and I tacked right. It was hard to make that course correction. Rhapsody in Blue wanted to follow you across. It was great seeing the family again. Great raft up and thanks again for dinner. For those don't know Kristen, Chris's better half, she rocks. She climbed my mast to try and feed my new spinnaker halyard, cleaned Pelicans bottom, clean out my speed wheel, cooks wonderfully, and is just one great super person. Chris is great too and so are the kids. The kids have a secret fishing weapon called the Barbie rod. Apparently it has caught more fish than all the other fishing equipment combined.

xort 03-17-2009 07:05 PM

180 lb dink with a 120 lb motor??? Really? Pix please! Is that beast on davits?

My 9' rib is about 130 lbs or so and my 9.9 hp 2 stroke is about 50 lbs or so...

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