Cambridge Cay: 1/25/2009 Thru 2/5/2009, 16nm
We tied my, size 12 Tevas to 50 foot of lines, secured them to the dingy, and hove them over the stern of the dink. The line streamed aft in the current with the Tevas as floats for the line. Everything on a boat has to have at least two uses even Tevas.
We slipped over the side of Mule and into water so clear it was like floating in air. The "Sea Aquarium" off the North end of O'Brien's Cay is a snorkels heaven. As the water swallowed us whole a school of Sargent Major fish the size of your hand accepted us into their school. They were so curious that they would individually swim up to your mask and peer "in" to see what type of "fish" you were. There were schools of Horse-Eye-Jack as big as miniature poodles and a rainbow of other fish: purple and yellow Fairy Basslet, Blue Hamlet, yellow and aqua Queen Angelfish, black and yellow French Angelfish, Blue Angel, Gray Angel, Silver Snapper, yellow and blue iridescent Yellowtail Damsel, Blue Tang, Blue Cromis, and yellow, blue and red Scrawled Cowfish, and of course all types and colors of Parrot Fish. Then there were the corals them selves: Tube sponges, Vase Sponge, Sea Anemone, Leaf Coral, Sea Urchin, both Orange and Red Wall Sponge and the most perfect Brain Coral I've ever seen. We spent about an hour in the water just drifting the Aquarium mesmerized by the colors and diversity of life.
And that's not all the Cambridge area has to offer. There are rugged trails thru the bush and over the coral hills between the Banks and Exuma sound. Rugged is the key word with barely enough room for your ankles to pass is spots, and over sharp coral that would be impassable without good shoes. The rewards for those who take the trek are spectacular views from the 60 foot plus hills of the string of islands that make up the Exuma chain embraced by the deep blue waters of the sound and aqua to yellow of the banks.
Then there is the opportunity to give back. We spent two days just helping park folk with projects. Saturday we helped clean up the beach and Monday build a table from driftwood on "Mailbox Cay" - named because there is a mailbox there (rusted shut but there). It is nice being able to give back a little to this beautiful place. Tuesday we partied down (had to field test the table we built). The Park director supplied the ice as a "thank you" for the help.
New friends on "Lady Galadril" just in from the Ragged Island lost their dink while there. It drifted away while they were ashore sharing a bonfire with fellow cruisers. Being "dinkless" puts you at a decided disadvantage. It is your truck, your means of boat to boat and shore to boat transportation. It is an essential piece of gear. By the time they got to Cambridge Cay, the USCG had contacted them. They had picked up their dink in the Gulf Stream off Cape Canaveral - about a 400 mile drift. It will be waiting for them when they return. Miracles happen.
We hope to be in Sampson Cay in a few days to do some minor re-provisioning. I'll publish the photos of Cambridge then.
Fairwinds and Rum Drinks,
Vic & Gigi
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