Pipe Creek, Warderick Wells, Shroud Cay 2016   Leave a comment

Submitted late due to lack of available wifi

pretty colors

pretty colors

We departed Black Sound, Exumas on 4 February and were in search

Pipe Creek

Pipe Creek

of a good place to hang out.  We are expecting heavy west winds over the coming weekend so we are moving north.  We stopped first at Staniel Cay to refuel then went to Pipe Creek, between Pipe Creek and Little Pipe Creek.  We had stopped here last year and rode out a cold front.  Unfortunately this time, there were other boats already anchored there and we did not feel we had enough room to swing on our anchor as the winds changed.  So, we moved a bit north around to the other end of Pipe Cay, close to Compass Cay Marina.  This area is open to the east and has wicked current when the tide changes but at this point, we are the only boat anchored here.  Of course as the weather starts to deteriorate, we

Second Option in Pipe Creek

Second Option in Pipe Creek

anticipate more boats will head to this anchorage.

With the weather not due to hit us for a few days, we spent all of 5

Pulling the dink

Pulling the dink

February exploring Pipe Cay in our dinghy.  The area is really pretty with various changes of water colors due to the depths.  With the outgoing tide, there are lots of shallow areas to explore, most of which was me actually pulling the dinghy by hand.  We met Laura and Stan

Terri riding along

Terri riding along

from M/V Laura D later and had an impromptu happy hour on the

cool drink in the water

cool drink in the water

beach.  We first met them about three years ago.  They have their boat anchored on the west side of Pipe Cay near the old DECA Station and generally remain there for three months or so.  Ray and Mary from

S/V Sanity, who we met earlier in Spanish Wells, joined us on the beach for cocktails.

red sky in morning

red sky in morning

As the saying goes, red sky in morning, sailor take warning!  The

another cold front

another cold front

predicted winds started to increase on 6 and 7 February.  The winds began from the south, then swung to the southwest, then northwest and were in the excess of 30 knots.  Our highest winds peaked at 48 knots (55 mph) from the west.  We did not get a lot of rain but what we did get was horizontal and definitely power washed the boat.  We now had five boats in the anchorage and just as the winds peaked, we had another boat come into the anchorage, dropped his anchor just off our bow, and then proceeded to back down on us.  The

it's cold

it’s cold

only thing that prevented him from hitting us was his dinghy, which he was towing, was pinned between our bow and his stern.  With our yelling he was going to hit us, he finally decided he was too close,

digging out the socks

digging out the socks

pulled his anchor and re-anchored behind us.  Of course, once the tide changed, we now had to be concerned he would be in front of us, so we spent a restless sleep checking our anchor and his position throughout the night.  On 8 February, the winds started to subside and were down in the low 20’s.  As we indicated several

cold front at sunset

cold front at sunset

times, this has been a very windy season.  Anytime we look at 20-25 knots as being calm, it must have been quite a time!

We had been on the reservation listing for Warderick Wells for the last

an updated sign

an updated sign

seven days but due to the extreme weather as no one was leaving the protected mooring balls at Warderick Wells.  On 8 February, the Ranger at Warderick Wells advised we would finally be assigned a mooring ball in the northern mooring field.  Our time in Pipe Creek was good but the anchorage was beginning to be overfilled and it was time to depart.  So, we motored north to Warderick Wells

updating sign

updating sign

and picked up mooring ball #12, which is very near to the park

from the top of the hill

from the top of the hill

headquarters.  After paying for the mooring ball, we walked up BooBoo Hill to check on and update our name board we had left several years before.  While atop BooBoo Hill, Mark and Joelle from S/V Daruma, who had been hiding from the west winds near Staniel Cay, arrived in Warderick Wells and were assigned the mooring ball behind us.  So, there was another call for sun-downer drinks aboard our boat.

cold front at daybreak

cold front at daybreak

On 9 February, yet another cold front blasted through.  Yep, we are getting very tired of cold fronts!  We clocked winds ranging from 20-32 knots all day and both said it was good to be tied to a secure mooring ball.  With white-caps in the anchorage, we dinghied over to Daruma and played dominoes to pass the time. 

The winds finally calmed a bit the next day back to the low 20 knot

BooBoo Hill

BooBoo Hill

range so we decided to go for a walk-about in Warderick Wells.  We went back to the top of BooBoo Hill then walked a trail to the south

Barefoot Beach

Barefoot Beach

side of Warderick Wells to Barefoot Beach.  It was good to be able to get off the boat for a bit.  After returning to the boat in the afternoon, it was cloudy and cool so we installed our full cockpit enclosures, grabbed a blanket, and passed the afternoon reading and definitely “chilling.”  We kept reassuring ourselves that although it was “cold?”, we were in the Bahamas.  Okay, we know we are not getting any sympathy from those of you who are shoveling snow at

sunset at Warderick

sunset at Warderick

this moment…….

chilling at Warderick

chilling at Warderick

With our time up at Warderick Wells, we decided to move further north to Shroud Cay on 11 February.  The winds were north at 20-28 knots and we had 2-3 foot waves on our motoring trip to Shroud Cay.  S/V Daruma decided on grabbing a mooring ball while we anchored on the south end of Shroud Cay.  Shroud Cay is one of our favorite anchorages as Shroud is peppered with various creeks that run through it.  We took our dinghy to

riding the creeks

riding the creeks

the southern cut through the mangroves to the Exumas Sound side of

beach at Shroud

beach at Shroud

Shroud.  The Exumas Sound was “boiling” with white-caps as far as one could see.  We walked the beach for a bit but since we are still in the Exumas Park, we are not allowed to take a shell or anything off the beach.  We hope the Sound settles down as weather forecast indicates a potential passage for us back to Eleuthera tomorrow.   So, until our

sunrise at Shroud

sunrise at Shroud

next update….

Bill and Terri      

Posted March 9, 2016 by svsecondoption in Uncategorized

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