The final leg to Florida
Our position at 10.00 Wednesday 26th April
Anchored in C ockburn harbour, South Caicos
573 miles to West Palm beach, Florida.
Just lifting the anchor to leave South Caicos. We’ve been here less than 24 hours but decided to come here yesterday from Grand Turk.
Grand Turk was interesting for a stop off and check in but the island revolves around the Carnival Cruise liner jetty that Carnival built for their cruise liners to stop at on their way to and from America and the Caribbean islands. A lot of the beautiful colonial homes on the sea front have been allowed to full into disrepair. One row back and the ‘new’ part of the island just looks like the States with brand new homes built with cruise liner money but of no interest to the tourist. Along the waterfront there are some nice hotels that have a few guests but many of them appeared empty. The anchorage was beautiful with the most stunning clear aquamarine water but not much snorkeling. Every day the local boats brought cruise liner passengers to snorkel the same spot behind us but all that was there were a few rocks that were deep and some fish. There is a ‘wall’ which would make for an interesting dive but that was all. We had 3 days there mainly to sit out a front that looked pretty nasty on the grib files but didn’t turn out so bad, although wouldn’t have wanted to be at sea in it. By Monday afternoon it had gone – taking all the good wind with it but leaving a beautiful blue sky.
Yesterday we decided to come across to South Caicos to check out and have a look at it. Amazingly we had a really good sail when there wasn’t supposed to be any wind. Cockburn harbour was very calm. We didn’t arrive until 4pm and decided it was too late to check out so went for a swim instead. The harbour is very shallow and we were anchored with a metre below the keel in superb clear water. Amusingly Bill stood on the sea bed holding onto the rudder but I didn’t have my camera with me. Lots of Conch shells here and one or two of them moving. Unfortunately as it’s a local delicacy most of them were empty.
We took the dinghy exploring and motored over to Long Cay that only inhabitants are Iguana. On the beach there were more Conch shells, 100s of them actually, some of them were forming part of the beach, all of them have a slit just below the third twirl which is how they must kill them. Sad but there seemed plenty around. I managed to find one nice looking one that I sneaked into the dinghy. There were so many they wouldn’t miss one.
This morning we went ashore to the wonderful old colonial customs building that used to be the commissioners office many years ago. The customs lady said the building had been there all of hers and her mothers life. The Check out took about 5 minutes, very easy, and we didn’t need to go back to Immigration but just hand her our departure cards. There wasn’t a lot of time but we took a little walk. The streets were deserted and completely different without the cruise liner trade. It was a very friendly place and worth a return trip next year.
So this is the final push to Florida. All being well it should take about 4 or 5 days. We are due to arrive on the 1st but if we get some wind it might be the 30th. I don’t mind as long as we get there safely. This time in 2 weeks time we’ll be landing at Heathrow but I have a birthday in between, hopefully not spent at sea.
Please pray for us or keep your fingers crossed whichever you believe in.
All well on board.
The blog goes through to facebook but we can’t see facebook or your comments. I look forward to catching up with them all when we get to the US. If you wish to email us please use mdqf6 @ sailmail.com (take out the gaps)