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Old 26-01-2013, 18:00   #136
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Unless the regulation was changed this year I think you are wrong and spreading false information as was done by another uninformed poster when I first posted this picture. With a Bahamian fishing permit cruisers are allowed 6 conch.
Hi Vasco, I'm under the impression that it is indeed illegal for foreigners to harvest a single conch now. I just did a quick search and the agency page does not have current regs posted, but here's this (last bullet):

Fishing Regulations | The Out Islands of the Bahamas

Thanks for posting anything else that shows current conch regs. It is a newer regulation so I would be surprised if they already changed it, particularly with conch populations as they are. I fired off an email to the Dept of Marine Resources to see what light they can shed on it, but no guarantee they will respond....
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Old 26-01-2013, 18:10   #137
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

The current fishing regs are as I posted above (rev 2007). Your info re no conch for foreigners is very old. I go there every year (am about to leave soon) and am very careful to be in compliance. Where did you get your info from? The site you refer to is not an official site and says you're allowed 10 conch!!
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Old 28-01-2013, 10:58   #138
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Originally Posted by Vasco View Post
The current fishing regs are as I posted above (rev 2007). Your info re no conch for foreigners is very old. I go there every year (am about to leave soon) and am very careful to be in compliance. Where did you get your info from? The site you refer to is not an official site and says you're allowed 10 conch!!
Hi Vasco, you are correct that it is legal to harvest 6 conch (with well formed lip), provided you have a fishing permit. I didn't get any explanation to clear up my confusion about the regulation, which was new in 2010 when I was last there, and is listed in some of the unofficial sites you mentioned. But I didn't ask about that, and I'm sure they have bigger fish to fry.

Good to straighten that out-


email below:


I refer to your e-mail of 26th January, 2013 on the above subject matter.

Please be advised that all foreign owned vessels engaging in any fishing in The Bahamas must first obtain a sportfishing permit from a Bahamian border official at a Bahamian port of entry.

Your allowable quota for conch is six (6) conch per vessel at any one time. You may export the allowable quota on your vessel.

All harvested conch must have a well formed flaring lip indicating adult sizes. The undersized conch must not be harvested in The Bahamas.
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Old 05-02-2013, 20:59   #139
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Here I am again ... the eternal pest !!!!

We have sailed the Exumas chain north, south and north again and are once agin tied up in the Atlantis Marina in Nassau ... WHY? We have an interview with the US Embassy on thursday morning to hopefully obtain our B1/B2 visas because we are not allowed to sail in on the ESTA visas we have (has to be commercial transport only on that).

Assuming we get our visas we would depart immediately for Florida where a friend has offered for us to tie up outside his home on the inter-coastal waterway.

My question is to those cruisers who do this year in and year out ... what route is the best (quickest - would like to be there for Miami Boat Show again) from Nassau to Fort Lauderdale?

We intend to pass through Hilsborough Inlet and head south 3 bridges.

Do cruisers drop anchor on the banks during night?

Suggestions please!
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Old 06-02-2013, 04:00   #140
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

The easiest and fastest (and in my opinion, safest) route to Ft. Lauderdale is from Nassau to NW Channel Lt to Mackay Shoal Lt. to North Rock to Ft Lauderdale. Be aware that the lights might be out. The NW Channel Lt is usually lit. I would not enter through Hillsorough Inlet. Enter Ft. Lauderdale through Pt. Everglades. This is a Class A inlet. Depending on tide and wind, inlets can be a handful. You might have a few more bridges but it's a much better inlet for persons with no local knowledge. And you will see all the beautiful houses along the waterway. Also you will need to clear in. I've never done it in Ft. Lauderdale but I think it will be better in a marina there.

You can anchor on the Bank at night if you wish, just go south off the track a mile or so to avoid being run over and show a good anchor light. Look for sand when anchoring. The trip is about 30 hours at 5-6 knots.

Explorer and other electronic charts of this route are accurate and we do it (the reverse route) every year. We usually catch the stream heading home and clear in at Lake Worth.
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Old 06-02-2013, 07:29   #141
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

I second the recommendation to avoid Hillsboro. Been a while since I lived in Ft Lauderdale so might have changed but in the past there was frequent shoaling and it was considered a fair weather, local knowledge inlet only.

Crossing the banks to FL would be the shortest but not necessarily the fastest. Route is to enter between Andros and the Berry Islands and exit at Cat Cay. I have anchored on the banks a couple of times but with no protection at all it can get a bit uncomfortable. If you do, like Rick says, make sure to move a mile or so off the direct route to avoid getting run down in the middle of the night. I have crossed the banks in the dark a couple of times but always made me a bit nervous.

If you're in a hurry, the route north of the banks through the NW Providence Channel is wide open and you could run nonstop.
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Old 06-02-2013, 11:49   #142
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

When I first started no cruiser crossed the Bank at night. Now it's quite common. I prefer the North Rock route to the Cat Cay/Gun Cay route because with the former you have a few dekes just before you enter Florida Strait but with the North Rock route it's straight out and it's usually night when you get to this part of the trip. Watch out for local mail boats, more than one cruiser has been hit especially at NW Channel light. Give them a wide berth. A moonlit night sure makes the trip easier.
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Old 06-02-2013, 13:58   #143
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I came through NW channel Saturday night and it was unlit. It's the one light on the Bahamas that is usually working.
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Old 06-02-2013, 17:31   #144
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

i third that on hillsboro inlet. don't do it unless you know it. rock jetty to the north thats just submerged at high tide, large shoal to the south, narrow inlet, opening bridge less than half a mile ahead once inside. a small bay inside where you can anchor before attempting the bridge but it may be crowded and then you'll have little maneuvering room. good in calm weather if you're familiar with it; in bad weather it's dangerous even if you do know it. stick to fort lauderdale.
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Old 06-02-2013, 21:10   #145
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Many thanks for the advice guys ... really appreciate this. So we will enter from Everglades Port side and rather have the extra bridge ... I see there is a bit of a front approaching Saturday/ Sunday so perhaps a weekend in 'The Berry Islands' could be worth the while!
I have to admit that a night crossing over the Banks does not sound like a challenge I am up for ... seen one too many cats on reefs since we started our journey!
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Old 07-02-2013, 13:05   #146
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

A good spot to wait for weather in the Berrys is behind Frazers Hog Cay, it's really the same cay as Chubb, just a different name. The only drawback here is there are strong currents and when wind opposes tide you lie a bit funny. Much of it is scoured out, look for a good patch of sand and you'll be ok. There are moorings there but like many in the Bahamas, not too reliable. If you want to sleep at night, anchor. Much better than the rolly little anchorage outside Chubb. Don't go into Chubb Marina unless you're rich.
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Old 07-02-2013, 16:06   #147
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Thanks Vasco ... US Embassy says to see them tomorrow at 1:00pm and seems we should be good to go so we will wait and see as one never knows with these things! We actually looked at this option ... is it on the eastern approach from safe mark 25*23.30N 77*50.50W ... the approach from there in a NW becoming NE direction for about 2nm?

Our current situation seems to have a departure at the latest on Saturday morning which unfortunately yet again sees us in NE winds @ 16-18 knts but will be on our beam for about 29 nm so not too shabby! However I am not sure what to expect at the anchorage in terms of comfort as the wind swings NE to E by Sunday midday.

From what we have gathered chatting to people is that the easterly winds can produce big choppy seas over the banks but to me this should not be a problem as we would be in following seas.

What would your take be on this?

Talking about expensive marinas ... we have spent a week at Atlantis Resort Marina where they charge $4.50 / foot / day. However, included in the rate is full access to the park and all facilities which is great! We are not marina people ... live on 'the hook' but found Nassau harbour did not have good space, has bad holding and is lumpy on account of all the traffic moving past there! I just didn't have the heart to let Ana live in these conditions for a week and after the harbour police asked me to lift anchor and cram in between all the other tightly squeezed yachts I called up Atlantis, managed to squeeze out a $0.50/ft discount and moved in. Its been a great stop but certainly will be back to the hook for us when we leave.
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Old 07-02-2013, 17:34   #148
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

I've been in that anchorage in all sorts of weather, some folks don't like it but there's lots of room. There's a couple of buoys at the entrance and being a cat you have no draft problems. Just pick a sandy hole, there's more sand to the east, once you get in, it gets a bit shallow for me but there's a good five feet there. And it's only about 14 miles from NW Channel Lt. if my memory serves me right. Coming from Nassau go to Bird Cay, and then head for the southerly tip of Frazers Hog. Follow the blue water in. The good anchoring spots are not too far up, just off a cut that's been dug out of the coral. Once in a while a little coastal tanker comes in to fuel up the "resort" at the north end - The Berry Island club, open sometimes, usually closed. They own the moorings I wrote about earlier.

As for Nassau anchoring, there are a few quiet holes left. But you can only get two boats in them so I'm not telling.

As for the Bank in easterlies, it should be a good run. There are no reefs, mostly 20 ft. some 10 but not much to worry about. What you have to think about is what the stream is doing when you get out.
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Old 14-02-2013, 09:22   #149
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Just as a follow up to all the good advise we got from fellow cruisers here ... we eventually did enter Hillsboro Inlet as it meant crossing 3 bridges instead of 5 and a substantially shorter distance to our destination.

The entrance was a bit confused and turbulent but nothing serious ... the current was running hard from the ocean into the 'canal' and I had to keep Impi hard to the right as the bridge does not open vertically however it was relatively easy.

I think the concerns raised on here by sailors helped us as we were probably even more vigilant than we otherwise would have been, so thank you for that advice everyone ...

Our last night at anchor in Bimini was a 'shocker' ... we rolled about uncomfortably all night
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Old 14-02-2013, 09:40   #150
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Our last night at anchor in Bimini was a 'shocker' ... we rolled about uncomfortably all night
Well offering this advise a day late and a dollar short for you but in case you go back or anyone else plans to anchor in Bimini.

As you noticed the harbor in north Bimini is pretty open and exposed to the east and southeast. Plus can get crowded. When I've been there in strong east winds I left the harbor and anchored up close to the beach on the west side of the island. No reefs or hazards and in many spots it is deep enough right up to the beach that you can tuck in pretty close. Much calmer, good holding, lots of room and privacy and you can just dink up to the beach if you want to visit town.
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