Baker’s Bay on Great Guana Cay presented us with gentle westerly winds as our guests climbed from their berths, sun shining brightly. We planned an “A to B” swim along the beach, our yacht moving to pick us up at the end of the swim. I took the lead group of Rick, Tara, and Cecile, and we picked a nice depth to swim. Rick stuffed his bathing suit with golf balls that he found lying on the bottom, no doubt shanked form the famous Baker’s Bay golf resort right on the beach.


Our plan was to pass by our yacht, round the northern tip of the island, and swim back. When we got near the tip, the wind had strengthened considerably, so I had my 3 charges hang around the beach while I checked out the scene around the corner. I had checked the tides earlier and remembered it was running out, into the Atlantic, and the wind was blowing the same direction. As I swam around the corner, I could feel a big push behind me, and realized I had covered 50 yards in a very short time. I turned around to swim back to the group and tried to stand up, but the current was too fast, so I swam. It took me more than twice the time to get back to my group, so I decided to cut the swim short and get us back on the yacht. Heather and Simon made the same decision for their groups. Sometimes the best decision we can make in open water swimming is to not go, to turn around, to wait for more favorable seas.  


Zack and the Skipper yanked the hook and set the sails for the open Atlantic. The Sea of Abaco is split in half by a big sandbar, which required most boats to duck into the open waters of the Atlantic for a brief while when sailing along a north/south route. We encountered a thrilling 8 foot swell, a brief glimpse of a pod of dolphins, and waves breaking over a desolate, windswept cay.

We pulled into Treasure Cay, where the water is the color of a blue raspberry slushie with a splash of milk. Time slowed. Reggae music drifted from a nearby working boat. Naps were taken. Some guests splashed in to cool off. Heather, Simon and I planned our swim: a 2-hour affair along this beach with impossibly white sand. Heather and I paired up with Yafa and Miriam, while Simon led Rick, Tara, and Cecile. Marianne and Lexi sat this one out to soak up some sun. One hour out, one hour back. Highs and lows. Big grins and hugs at the end. A 2-hour swim is no small accomplishment for any swimmer, and we celebrated through the evening.


Chef Miriam has a last name that goes great with food, Molinet, and I often name dishes for her. Tonight was spaghetti and meatballs Molinet with brussels sprouts Molinet. Delicious. A few minutes ago, in big seas, we lost a bottle of hot sauce. I suggested we just open one of Miriam’s veins as they must be running with the stuff.  

Last night’s birthday celebration led to some early bedtimes for this group. It looks like we may get some rain overnight, in which case Zack will be up closing hatches. This crew is running on all cylinders, and we’re ready for whatever comes at us tomorrow.

- Hopper