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Old 27-12-2022, 16:49   #1
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Nassau to Exhumas - Best route?

Hey folks, looking to draw on local knowledge. We will be in Nassau this weekend, heading to the Exhumas to cruise down to George Town, but the question is how best to sail the first leg. We have a 7 foot draft (Beneteau Oceanis 47.5) so it might be a bit dicey trying to head straight there. Would really suck hitting a bombie or dragging in the sand.

Navionics gives us a roundabout route that is 109 NM, to Eleuthera than back over. Is that the smart move if we have not done this trip before? Straight across is under 40NM.

To be on a Cat that draws 4 feet...sigh!
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Old 27-12-2022, 19:59   #2
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Re: Nassau to Exhumas - Best route?

Disclaimer, I am on a cat with 4.5' draft
The yellow bank route is way easier than the chart looks. Aquamaps is pretty accurate on depths and the coral heads are very visible. Ideally run it morning/noon so you have good overhead light.
We do it with confidence at full speed and I don't remember seeing any depths under 10 or 12 feet.
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Old 28-12-2022, 00:40   #3
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Re: Nassau to Exhumas - Best route?

There are sections on the yellow bank at 6'9" when you zoom in close on Navionics and this not on the bommies. This is at low tide of course, so maybe you could aim to be over the yellow banks an hour or two before high tide and around noon and you should be able to get over OK. If you have not sailed shallow waters and seen bommies that go green close to the surface and can recognize them as such you might have an issue.



An alternative route is to go around West end of Nassau and take a right angle route south then across deeper water west of Highbourne Cay. I have not done this particular route, just an observation.
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Old 28-12-2022, 06:54   #4
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Re: Nassau to Exhumas - Best route?

Thanks, folks, seems like the Yellow bank route, timed correctly, is the ticket. I found a very good thread on that here at CruisersForum (why didn't I do a search first?), and also some Youtube videos that show the passage. Someone at the bow keeping an eye out for the bombies seems very easy, what with the sand being white and all! 43 miles way better than 109 when all else is equal.
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