It’s crazy, but we’re here!!
We had waited for over a week for a weather window (I know, not that long, but you try with 4 months of anticipation building behind you!), and when it finally came we were excited. UNFORTUNATELY, I (Caitie) woke up to rather aggressive lightning and rain around 2am before our planned 5am departure. 4:30am came and it was raining harder than we had seen this entire trip, with consistent lightning strikes to the south. Frustrations were high – we had already “staged” (prepped and moved anchor to be closer to the sea) and were ready to GO.
When the US Coast Guard came on the radio at 4:30am and announced a Small Craft Advisory and high winds, which completely contrasted the JUST released NOAA forecast online, I was pissed. Having spent a lot of the past week reading Bruce Van Sant’s “Gentleman’s Guide to Passages South“, I was adamant not to take any “third party” weather at face value, so I called the Coast Guard to verify their radio announcement.
And, can you believe it – they had made an error. It was yesterday’s forecast. I knew that it didn’t match what was posted but wasn’t willing to cancel our planned crossing just yet, and when they confirmed that there was NO small craft advisory, we decided to give it a go.
And although it was a higher risk crossing, given the thunderstorms still looming nearby, we had a safe and easy passage. Frankly, it was easier than the average shallow draft day on the ICW.
So, 120 nautical miles later, here we are in the Berry Islands, eating conch fritters, drinking rum punches, and celebrating a hard earned destination: Bahamas.