Paddleboarding and The Blue Hole anchored off White Cay

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It was a 19nm sail down to White Cay where we ducked in to set anchor. Peter almost missed the turn as we surfed the boat through the cut. It was pretty clear that it was too shallow to go forward through the next part so we followed the breadcrumbs on the chartplotter from the previous owner in to a sharp turn to starboard and settled in next to another sailboat.

Peter and I took the dogs to shore with the dinghy. There were many small islands and little tiny beaches but not much sand around the islands. Mostly lava rock and no shells. We watched the sunset from our private beach then went to say hello to another ketch anchored nearby.

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We got back and had the rests of the snapper caught the day before. It was a rough and rolly anchorage because there was so much current being pushed through from two different locations. That night we swung all the way around over and over. We kept the mizzen up to hopefully point into the wind but the current kept swinging us in circles.

Tuesday 2.18.14 first thing in the morning Gunner told us he needed to go potty and as soon as we got him to the Astroturf on the aft deck, he went pee right away!! Old dogs can learn new tricks!

Leah wanted to go for an adventure on the paddleboards so Peter helped finish getting them ready. We are missing the screw and nut that holds the fin on so he secured it with a zip-tie instead. I was extremely leery of drifting away from the boat with just the paddles. The current was wicked and the night before the guys had trouble swimming back to the boat while carrying their dive gear. As long as the guys followed us in the dinghy for the first part of the paddling I decided to give it a shot.

I had no idea how calm and beautiful it was about to be once we got around the point where the waves were breaking! Finally we were able to move from our knees to standing up and then we paddled through the crystal blue green waters. This really is the stuff dreams are made of.

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There were sting rays and bright blue fish swimming under us in the sandy shallows. We saw a few turtles too.

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Peter and Josh went back to get the dogs in the dinghy. When they got back to us, I got Betsy out for her first time on a paddleboard! She is such a good water dog :) We weren’t ready to try it with Gunner yet. He was feeling much better but we figured he just might not have the strength yet for something as crazy as that.

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After a bit of doggy paddling we got towed over on the paddleboards to the trail that leads to the Blue Hole of Hoffmans Cay.

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The four of us and the dogs hiked up the trail until we could see the big hole in the middle of the island. Its something like 600 feet deep and connects to the ocean so its all salt water. We heard Jacques Cousteau discovered it many moons ago.

Peter jumped off the cliff into the deep blue hole and the rest of us climbed down a little further. It was amazing! The edge just dropped off into a deep abyss.

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There was a cave like area that had been worn away and tucked up underneath, completely undisturbed in the sand, was written “Journey.” I knew it must have been left by our friends aboard S/V Journey who arrived there just a couple weeks before us. Sailing Journey, we’re right behind you!!

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Betsy and Gunner went swimming with the boys and then we hiked back out.

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We headed back to the boat then checked out the beach closest to us. Peter and Josh took their Hawaiian slings over to the outside of the island and tried again for some dinner. Peter got one lobster and one unknown species of fish. When we finally filleted it up later that night we discovered the fish had some sort of parasite inside so we tossed the whole thing overboard :( We BBQ’d chicken instead with a tasty little lobster appetizer. Still a pretty good meal for living on the hook!

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7 comments

  1. Andrew Odom says:

    Looks like a ton of fun. My wife and I are going to try paddleboarding here in Fort Myers, FL in two weeks. We are going to have a 30 minutes lesson and then paddle the water. Can’t wait.

    And I love y’alls pics. What a beautiful place. Thank you for sharing!

  2. Bean says:

    Happy for Gunner, Betsy too! They get to be with both of you all the time and so many new wonderful smells with each new place you go. Happy Dogs for sure.

  3. LOVE that the potty training is working! And the gorgeous paddle pics. AND that you guys found evidence of s/v Journey! I hope we’re not too terribly far behind you. But plans are brewing and new ideas are growing. So we’ll just keep trucking along halfway on land. Thank you for sharing!

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