Well, we certainly were in Royal Island longer than we had hoped but thankful for the good, safe anchorage for all the storm fronts.
First I need to mention that on Thursday, January 17th our grandson Tayton celebrated his 9th birthday. Where has the time gone? Next year he will be into the double digits! He is the oldest of our grandchildren. We called to wish him a Happy Birthday and Amber sent us this photo of him with his birthday cake. He looks pretty pleased with his cake.
I also asked Amber and Scot to send us photos of the other two grandkids that celebrated birthdays. I had mentioned them in our blogs on their special days but didn’t have photos. Birthdays are special and definitely need a shout out and a photo!
Here is Easton, who turned 7 on January 10th He had a fun birthday party! Love his big smile.
And Margie was born on my birthday, December 28th! How lucky am I? She turned 6 while we were home for Christmas but she was away at Disney World. We talked to her that day and she was having a grand time! Here she is with her crown and birthday button. A cute princess at Disney World.
Speaking of cuteness, this little guy had his passport picture taken. Everything is all set now for him to arrive the end of February. He certainly looks a lot older than 9 months, doesn’t he? You are ready to come to the Bahamas in the sun and sand now, Finn!
Gary and Sue from Cardea came into the anchorage on the 17th. We had met them in Vero Beach and they are from Halifax. It was nice to visit with them again. Their little yorkie Max, is so cute and very sociable. We had hoped to get a day to get into Spanish Wells again with them but the winds didn’t permit that.
There is no place to walk in Royal Island. It is uninhabited other than the private resort that is on the other side of the island. We did walk last time on the Island property to see an old run down mansion and gathered some coconuts but there are new signs up for No Trespassing. A boat that was here the first day we arrived told us that they went for a walk on the island and they were told to get off the property as it is private. We dared not try our luck.
Quite a few boats started arriving on the 18th because of the storm that was predicted for the 20th. We did have a nice chat with Jan and Cam from Te Amor. We had met them in Marsh Harbour last time and they are from NS. They have been coming to the Bahamas for many years and are friends with Joe and Yvonne from Modaki. We also met a couple on a catamaran from Brighton who also know our friends, Jim and Cheryl. Such a small world. And the folks that we first met in Vilano Beach and then in Vero Beach came in here as well. They are from Colorado. Another couple we met are from the Yukon and they bought their boat in Montreal and sailed it here. Two other boats that were in Vero Beach came in as well. By the evening of the 18th, there were 15 boats here. One left the next morning and of the 14 boats left, 9 were Canadian! I guess lots of Canadians want to get away from the snow and cold. 🙂
We have some photos of the last few days here:
Lots of boats in the anchorage
The full moon at dusk
The calm before the storm
Wind picking up the next day; January 20th for predicted cold front
Yep, we got just what they said….rain and high winds gusting to 35 knots!
Our anchor held but the catamaran in front of us starting dragging. He was coming back towards us. Yikes! We tried to radio him but no answer. Another boat radioed us back to say that the guy was on his deck lifting his anchor. With the wind and the rain, we couldn’t see if anyone was on deck or in the cockpit. He got his anchor reset and then had to get his dinghy down to go retrieve his boat hook that had blown away when he was on the bow. He stopped by to talk to us. Poor guy was soaked.
Finally the rain stopped and the wind wasn’t gusting as bad. It was overcast and cloudy so didn’t think we would be able to see the lunar eclipse. We could actually see some of it between 23:30 and midnight. I couldn’t get photos but it was certainly awesome to see!
More captioned photos below:
On the 21st , we had a nice view of the moon around 06:40
And just a few minutes later; Good morning moon
This being the morning after the storm, it was still very windy. There was quite a chop on the water
A lot of the boats left the anchorage though. Some for Spanish Wells to take a dock or a mooring ball and some others, we weren’t sure where they were headed. All we knew was the the weather was going to be windy for most of the week so we were staying put!
And the weather router was right. The next few days the wind kept blowing. Seemed it always picked up more at 04:00 and we would check our surroundings. We even had whitecaps in the anchorage
And a surf outside the anchorage for a few days
We were invited over to Cardea one night for supper. It was a fun night with great food! Gary barbecued and Sue baked homemade biscuits and a pineappple upside down cake. So yummy! And of ourse, Max was glad to see us. He is a great little boat dog.
On our last day in Royal Island, we went for one more dinghy ride. We had hoped to see some turtles like we did 4 years ago but unfortunately we didn’t. We snapped a photo with our phone of the boats at anchor from our dinghy. All are Canadian!
After our dinghy excursion, we got the dinghy in the dinghy tow ready for the next day’s crossing to Nassau. That evening was finally calm. Here is a closer view of the boats in the anchorage taken from Persuasion. A large motoryacht came in while we were getting the dinghy in the tow
A closer look at that motor-yacht
And also while being in Royal Island, we had the opportunity to see these:
And equally lovely sunsets
So folks that was our stay in Royal Island. A little longer than we expected and not as many trips in to Spanish Wells as we would have liked. We were however, thankful for the pretty anchorage and the good holding for Persuasion in the strong winds. If you ever find yourself on your boat in Royal Island, you will appreciate it’s beauty and if a storm blows through, you will be thankful to be holed up in there.
Next stop: Nassau!