Ready? Set, Go!!

They say that you're never actually completely ready to head out on passage. Well, we put that notion to the test on a recent sail to the Bahamas.

Heaing down the Canaveral Barge Canal
Heaing down the Canaveral Barge CanalJen Brett

I like to consider myself a somewhat organized person. Especially when it comes to passage prep. But organized is the last word I would use to describe how I felt as we left the anchorage in Cocoa, Florida, with a destination of somewhere in the Bahamas (weather dependent). I was just back from working at the Miami boat show on Saturday, followed by a quick family visit that night. But like the tides, weather windows don't wait for anyone, and our (very small) window of opportunity was opening the next day.

No time to unpack from my trip — we needed to get the laundry done, do some shopping and pick up a few odds and ends… and then stow and go. It being a Sunday, this was a challenge, but we managed to get just about everything on the list, including a throttle cable for the outboard (which broke just that morning), and straps for our dive masks. (Our unfortunate oversights include: Beer [doh!], paper towels and TP [uh oh..]). And then, feeling a bit more like Captain Ron ("If anything's gonna happen, it's gonna happen out there!) than I would like, we weighed anchor and headed out in late afternoon.

The passage that followed was mostly good — about 50 hours, give or take, from Port Canaveral to Nassau. A decent breeze and a fairly bouncy ride held for most of the way, and there were plenty of ships to keep things “exciting” off of Freeport, but here we are, all cleared in and anchored in Nassau. We’ll stay here for a day or so while we wait for a weather system to blow through before heading to Eleuthera — a place we haven’t been before and are eager to check out. Until then, I’ll take care of our “unfortunate oversights” in town tomorrow. And maybe finally unpack my bags.

CW senior editor Jen Brett, along with her husband, Green, and two daughters, is on a winter cruising sabbatical aboard their Reliance 44 ketch, Lyra.

Canaveral Locks
Approaching the Canaveral Locks just past sundownJen Brett
A blustery sunrise
Rail-dipping conditions during sunrise on day two.Jen Brett
AIS targets
Just a few of the AIS targets that kept the on watch busy during the night off Grand Bahama.Jen Brett
salty selfie
A super salty selfieJen Brett
Waiting out weather in Nassau, Bahamas
Waiting out weather in Nassau, Bahamas.Jen Brett