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Old 01-02-2011, 18:14   #1
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First Bahamas Entrance Advice

We're in Coconut Grove (Miami) staging to head across to the Bahamas -- we have a 37' Chris Craft Apache ( really....) and draw 5'9"

Our plan is to move across to just outside of No Name Harbor tomorrow afternoon and leave around 4am on Thursday and head for North Rock, make as far across the banks as we can reasonably -- then anchor for the night and continue on to Chub to clear in.

Thurs am is forecast to be 8-12 out of the East South East -- 12-17 South East on Friday -- so basically two days of motoring into the wind...

would we be better off heading to Bimini and clearing in there and waiting for a south or north wind to go across the banks? The plan is to get to the Exumas so I'd like to make as much easting as possible now.

I've heard a lot of conflicting reports on Bimini -- good place to clear in, bad place to clear in, relatively well marked entrance, not so easy entrance, etc.



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Old 02-02-2011, 04:16   #2
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Cleared in in Bimini a dozen times. Only problem is that customs want you on a dock so just tie up at one of the old marinas near immigrations.

I draw 8ft so I try and stay off the banks and get to Nassau by going north of Gt Isaac.

Winds look fine for crossing banks on Saturday...get to Bimini and work it out while having a beer there.


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Old 02-02-2011, 04:27   #3
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Go for North Rock and Nassau. If it gets too rough after the NW Channel light go and hide behind Frazers Hog Cay (same island as Chubb). We're in South Beach and will head down to Hurricane harbor later in the week. The Thursday window doesn't look too good so we'll wait another few days. The window two weeks ago was excellent (WSW 15) we sailed to North Rock from Biscayne Channel but had to sail back because of bad fuel. Ended up at Ft. Lauderdale. Got the fuel polished and now we're in Miami waiting again.
Rick I
Toronto in summer, Bahamas in winter.
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Old 02-02-2011, 06:01   #4
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At this time of the year I would use the cold fronts to get to the Exuma's, no need to motor. Regardless if you are just passing though I would not check in until Nassau. Chub will just cost you extra money and give you nothing in return. You can anchor at Chub with out checking in waiting on the wind to clock to the west and then north with the next front.
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Old 02-02-2011, 06:21   #5
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Everybody has a favorite entry. Ours is to leave No Name early in the morning and sail to North Rock, then over night across the banks and into Nassau to check in.

Some cruisers don't like Nassau, but you don't spend most of your first week getting there. The next day, you are in the Exumas. Weather permitting of course.

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