Northern Exumas

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Northern Exumas

 

 

                 
First taste of the Exumas
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Allens Cay Anchorage

 

Iguanas on Leaf Cay

 

 

Norman Cay anchorage

365 islands ranging from 13 to 135 miles southeast of Nassau.

We arrived in Allens Cay on 26th February along with Chill and Melissa Sue and also met up with Breathless in Allens Cay.

The Allens Cay group includes Allens Cay, Leaf Cay and Southwest Allens Cay. Leaf Cay and Southwest Allens Cay are the main home of the indigenous iguanas a species of iguana found only in The Bahamas. As you approach the beach of Leaf Cay, there may be up to 50 or 60 iguanas to meet you. Quite a sight.

Allens Cay is a very attractive introduction to the Exumas and has some great snorkelling and dive sites. However, the currents in the anchorage are very strong and when tide and wind conflict it can be very unpleasant. We enjoyed our four days there, but were glad to move further south on 2nd March. Dream On and Breathless sailed down to Normans Island, Chill sailed on to the Exuma Park at Warderick Wells Cay. Our journey of 15 miles to Normans Cay was the nicest sail so far. The sea was fairly calm, the wind cooperated and it was warm. But no fish!

Normans Cay is famous for the drug baron Carlos Lehder who bought most of the island by coercion in the 70ís and set up a hub centre for drug traffic to the US. After a raid by DEA special forces his facilities were evacuated but still stand bearing the scars of a shoot out. There are the disintegrating remains of a DC4 or DC6 aircraft that did not make the airstrip for reasons unknown, sitting in 10 feet of water in the harbour, also a relic of those activities.

None of that southern area of the island has been seriously redeveloped, although there are rumours this may happen soon. The airstrip is functioning, though not in good condition and you have to walk across this to get to the very homely MacDuffs Grill and Bar, overlooking the western shore of the island. The main conversation stopper in the bar is a drink blender run from a single cylinder gasoline powered leaf blower motor. This is started at the back of the bar like an outboard engine, half choke and pull the starter cord! Nikita, Christina Joy and Melissa Sue arrived at Normans on the second day.

On 3rd March, we sailed the 12 miles from Normans Cay to The Exumas Land and Sea Park at Warderick Wells Cay having been able to secure a mooring in advance.

Breathless, Nikita and Christina Joy remained at Normans Cay. Melissa Sue went directly from Normans Cay to Staniel Cay and on to Georgetown, so we will probably meet up with Larry from Melissa Sue when we reach Georgetown. Thatís It picked up guests in Nassau and followed a few days later to Allens Cay.

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