After a short trip to Cambridge Cay, we staked out a couple of places to shelter from the strong southerly/westerly winds forecast for later in the week. The first one, just off Bell Island, was a little too shallow for us. So we headed over to the north end of Cambridge Cay where we picked up one of the Exuma Parks mooring balls. The mooring rope looked a bit ragged, so we tied on extra lines further down the rope. And, to be sure, I wanted to dive down to look at what the mooring rope was attached to at the bottom.
My snorkel from the back of the boat to the mooring ball came to an abrupt end. Swimming just in front of Lady Jane were two sharks that would make Jaws seem a lightweight. At least it looked that way to me. I made a hasty retreat back to the swim ladder, just in time for the park warden to arrive to collect mooring fees. So, I asked him what sort of sharks are down there. I was thinking Great Whites or Bull Sharks. Lemon or Reef, he said, – both well down on the aggression scale. I kept a bloody good lookout when I went back though. And Maria stayed on shark watch, just in case.
Snorkelling in the Aquarium
After checking the mooring was fine (it was) we took the dinghy over to a couple of dive spots further north near O’Brien Cay. The first of these is an old plane that didn’t make its destination. And the second spot was the less-sinister, but much more colourful, Seaquarium Coral Garden between O’Brien Cay and Soldier Cay. This patch of coral, although blighted with algae, deserves its aquarium name tag. There’s plenty of fish down there.
Back at the boat, I plonked myself in the water again with a camera to wait for the sharks. I didn’t want people to think I’m making this stuff up. Nor did I have to wait long. Within a few minutes, I spotted a baby shark followed by the mother a few seconds later. She approached from my left, curved around, and headed straight towards Lady Jane. But about three metres below me.
The next day, and the day after, the wind speed increased to beyond what is a comfortable dinghy ride, so we stayed onboard. And what do you do when the wind is up, and there’s nowhere to go? Make hatch covers that’s what.
Hatch covers have been on the list of jobs for a while, so this seemed a good time to tackle it. And after a couple of days fighting with Sunbrella fabric in a confined space, our nearly-new hatches have protection from the sun when we are parked up. The covers prevent the acrylic from getting like the motley crew: Crazed.
With that done, as soon as the wind has settled down we are heading to Staniel Cay for Christmas.