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Old 22-11-2011, 17:43   #1
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Cruising the Abacos this Winter

Can anyone give some must go to's in the Abacos? Will be chartering there this winter for a week. My first catamaran...always sailed monohulls. Any suggestions on cat's would be welcome too!
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Old 22-11-2011, 18:02   #2
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this winter

Depends on whether you're a party person or prefer quiet anchorages.
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Old 22-11-2011, 18:28   #3
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this winter

Can do both!
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Old 22-11-2011, 18:41   #4
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this winter

I'll be trading time for a cat there this winter myself.

Where to go depends on what you prefer. One thing I like about the Abacos is the diversity of opportunities - great snorkeling, quaint towns and resorts and many isolated anchorages. I'm not aware of another charter location where one can have an island to themselves half the nights out if they wish.

For quaint towns, I prefer New Plymouth on Green Turtle and Hope Town on Elbow Cay. Both have a few eateries, bars, small grocery stores and shops.

Treasure Cay offers a very protected anchorage and for a small fee you get to use the resort facilities including their pool. - If water is limited and people want a long, hot shower midway through - it may suit the bill. Also note, it's where you'll also have many other boats anchored close by.

Anchorages, I often have to myself or find minimal boats at include: Powell, maybe Manjack, No name, Whale, maybe spoil Cay, Water Cay and maybe the Deep Sea Cay area. I enjoyed the high water dinghy ride through the "creek" behind there. The Pelican Cays are a nice day stop most boaters pass by.

My favorite snorkeling has been off the N tip of Great Guana, off Fowl Cay, NE of Elbow and Sandy Cay.

Little Harbour offers good all weather protection, with a fun beach bar and gallery. Great to watch them pour molds if you catch them at the right time.

The water can be a bit chilly some winters so it might be worth your while to bring a thin shortie wetsuit if you are a water person. Cold fronts can bring some strong winds, but the protection and shallow banks keep the sea state down, so appropriate reefing makes even windy conditions reasonably pleasant sailing. Given the shallow water, it really pays to get to know the tides and exactly what you'll have beneath you at low tide. That can mean the difference between being tucked in and out in the slop.

I'm not much of a group party person, but Marsh Harbour, Nippers, maybe G.T. at times and maybe Treasure are the closest you will likely find to that.

I have photos of most of the islands at bahamasmariner.com/abaocs

Have a great charter.
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Old 22-11-2011, 19:03   #5
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

We enjoyed Little Harbour, most have to pay attention to the tide to enter and exit. It's nice spot nonetheless. We also enjoyed Green Turtle and Marsh Harbour. There are many more.
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Old 22-11-2011, 19:10   #6
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

there is a cruisers net in abaco on the vhf everyday. Do a google search for the channel. I spent 6 months there and loved it. the net will give you lots of info. nippers is fun on sundays if i remember the day correctly. You ca get anything food wise in abaco that you will need.
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Old 22-11-2011, 20:08   #7
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

Thanks very much! Lots to research.
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Old 22-11-2011, 20:31   #8
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Don't miss snorkeling at Sandy Cay. Cruisers net is on VHF ch 16 at 8:15. You can listen in thru the Internet before you go. Look on barometer bob for cruisers net info.
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Old 22-11-2011, 21:22   #9
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

my favorite cruising area in the bahamas. uninhabited islands when you want them, quaint 'new england' towns when you feel 'historical', treasure cay for showers, laundry, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, and marsh harbor when you need to stock up.

while i normally recommend the explorer charts for the bahamas, i would add the steve dodge guide to abaco. study it before you go and you will find your own favorite spots. mine are green turtle cay, treasure cay, powell cay, and hopetown. but i like the other spots nearly as much....
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Old 22-11-2011, 21:25   #10
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

Welcome. Good choice
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Old 23-11-2011, 16:22   #11
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

by the way, when you're in marsh harbor to pick up or drop off your cat, be sure to go to junovias restaraunt for lunch/dinner. my wife is a connossuer (sp?) of bahamian cooking and swears they have the best in the bahamas...

i think the morning cruisers net is on channel 68 but they will announce on 16 just before the net starts. also, always keep your vhf on....
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Old 25-11-2011, 07:39   #12
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

Quote:
Originally Posted by irwin27destiny View Post
Don't miss snorkeling at Sandy Cay. Cruisers net is on VHF ch 16 at 8:15. You can listen in thru the Internet before you go. Look on barometer bob for cruisers net info.
The Net is definitely on 68 at 8.15L.

I like going walkabout on Man-o-War Cay. Hopetown is pretty but touristy. Guana is very nice - with a cat you can grab a ball in the harbor and get wonderful baked goods for breakfast at the shop right across from the dinghy dock. Nippers barbecue is a bit over-rated but is such a famous event everyone should do it once. Look for the multi-colored front-loader on the walk to Nippers.
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Old 29-11-2011, 14:30   #13
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

Thank you Auspicious. How are you? Been sailing long distance these days?
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Old 02-12-2011, 06:44   #14
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

JUst wanted to get a note in here. If you go to Marsh Harbour and do not HAVE to go to Conch Inn (Moorings Base), I would avoid it at all costs. Staff is weak, rude and seem to be bothered that they have guests. Dockhand tied us up poorly (I know it's our ultimate responsibility, but at least learn how to tie a boat up). electricity was supposed to be by KW hour, so we plugged in to top off the batteries. When we checked out, we were told the meter was broke, so they'd would JUST charge us $25 per day. Ouch. Had to have charter guests help us leave the dock since the dockhand was " outta here at 2:00". Upon leaving (not on arrival), we were informed that checkout was at 12:00, but they would let us slide.... Laundry $12 per load, restaurant/bar sometimes open, sometimes closed. Need a key for the showers which they don't tell you until they're gone for the day. Fuel spilled all over our boat, with "Oops" as an apology. Not a big fan of Marsh Harbour anyway, but Conch Inn only made it worse.
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Old 02-12-2011, 06:56   #15
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Re: Cruising the Abacos this Winter

What happened to the Conch Inn?Haven't been there for years my Memory is only Good,Great Food Nice people,lots of fun
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