Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco

Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco Island


Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco Island




Gigi and Lulu in Roi Soleil along the Maria and Vinnie in Amante disappeared over the horizon heading South East about 25 miles to Marsh Harbour to reprovision. Apparently the grocery prices there are considerably cheaper with selection somewhat greater than at Green Turtle. We checked out the weather and, according to the forecast wind directions it would be South East for the whole day. That would mean going almost directly into the wind. Not keen so we stayed. I wanted to get our Geneker set up. We had bought a new pad eye to install at the bow for the Geneker tack so I decided it was time to install. Just drill 3 holes in the deck and bolt it down. I had 40mm long M7 bolts to allow for deck thickness and a section of 1/2 inch polyethylene backing plate. After carefully measuring and placing the pad eye behind the anchor locker I drilled the holes. The deck seemed extra ordinarily thick. I could not reach far enough into the back of the anchor locker to put the nuts on the bolts so had to take the chain and rope out so that Sasha could climb in put nuts on bolts. First one no problem, second OK but third no go. It turned out that the deck was, in places, just too thick. After another hour of trying various ways to get the nut started we gave up. Pad eye in but for the moment only 2 bolts holding it in place.  We celebrated the partial success with a rum and coke - taken over from GnT in the Bahamas where rum is $7 per litre. Coke is mixed sparingly as it is $2.50 per litre.








On Wednesday we moved camp to Green Turtle Cay with the thought of going to Macintoshes for Conch dinner. Once ashore we strolled around the very narrow streets 3 or 4 metres wide, just comfortable for the mainly golf cart or 4 wheel motor bike transportation. Up on top of the “hill” about 30ft or so there was a lovely view out over the Sea of Abaco. We found McIntosh’s restaurant, very small with 5 or 6 fairly old wooden tables covered by plastic table cloths and equally old wooden chairs, nothing fancy but clean. Only problem, we did not have enough cash for dinner and the bank did not open until tomorrow, Thursday. Not far away was M&B Seafood but the tiny shop was closed. We asked at the grocery store if there was somewhere to buy seafood - M&B of course, if the shop is closed just knock on the door of their house alongside. It worked, two large lobster tails for $13, bbq lobster on the boat for dinner, beats any restaurant any day!






On Thursday with a 10kn Westerly we headed to Marsh Harbour via "The Whale Channel". The Whale is a narrow shallow, 4 metre deep, channel out to the ocean. One has to go out, past one of the Islands and then back into the Sea of Abaco because the bank on the other side is just too shallow. If there is a general Northerly swell of some size then the whale is not passable. Today it was almost dead flat and we sailed all the way. Within a few miles of Marsh Harbour the wind dropped to about 7kn, time to try the geneker. Sasha and I had watched the North Sails instructional video so that and having used normal spinnakers in yacht racing, I had a reasonable idea of what to do. I sat up the bow and connected the lines, Sasha hauled up the sock and sail then I released the sail from the sock.









It filled almost immediately and within a couple of minutes we were doing 5kn with the GPS (general purpose spinnaker) billowing out front. She worked like a beauty.








In Marsh Harbour we anchored about 60 metres from Roi Soleil, waving to Gigi and Lulu as we went past. It was mid afternoon and still time to go ashore for a quick scout around. Somewhat more cosmopolitan than Green Turtle, even some traffic lights, but still very much the island style. Liquor was cheap Bacardi Rum at 2 litres for $15.00, the mixers were not, Coke $2 per litre. We "invested" in rum, vermouth, orange liqueur, banana cream liqueur and cans of pineapple juice. Seemed that stiff cocktail drinks were going to be the order of the day. At the other end of the anchorage was a sea food shop so we went in the dingy and bought Mahi Mahi to put on the bbg for dinner since no fish made the mistake of getting hooked on the line we trolled all the way from Green Turtle. My fish catching prowess was very much being bought into question.








On Friday we carried out a brief price survey of the 3 nearest grocery stores and settled for Maxwells to get the benefit of our custom! With an almost full trolley I was worrying about how we would get the couple of hundred metres back to the dingy. No problems just take the trolley.










Gigi and Lulu joined us for sundowners, pina coladas, that went on much later than anticipated. Apart from crackers with cheese tomatoes and gherkin, luckily, Sasha had also made seared tuna pieces with soy and ginger based dipping sauce.