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Abaco, Bahamas trip June 2017

Andy S

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#1
Well after last years epic trip to Exuma, https://jetboaters.net/threads/exuma-bahamas-trip-june-2016.9352/ the group decided that in 2017 we would pave the way and explore another area of the Bahamas, Abaco is what we decided on with the group staying in Treasure Cay, Abaco. Unfortunately one of last years members will not be able to join us on our Abaco trip but will be with the huge group going to Bimini, @JROD.

Like last years trip to Exuma, this trip has taken a tremendous amount of planning which thankfully is almost done. Unlike Exuma or even Bimini, the planning for lodging and food is a little easier since Abaco has the 3rd largest city in the Bahamas, Marsh Harbour, so almost anything you will need is within reach. One of our early tough decisions was where to stay, not because there are so few choice but just the opposite, too many choices. We picked Treasure Cay because it is relatively central the things we want to do and the prices and quality of places to stay fit our budgets. VRBO and/or Home Away are a tremendous resource to find a place to stay in Abaco. Here is the place that my crew is staying, https://www.vrbo.com/361093 , Robert and Isaac's crews are sharing a house in the same grouping of homes. Having my own dock within feet of the house will be fantastic, also the price of the dock is included in the house rental.

Our trip dates are departing the US on Sunday, June 25th and arriving back in the states on Sat, July 1st. This year's return trip to the US our group will not be meeting up the the Bimini group, unfortunately the dates don't overlap. Also, we are leaving from Palm Beach, FL with clearing the Bahamas customs at West End, Grand Bahamas. Our trip to Treasure Cay will take us north of Grand Bahamas island around the northern tip of Abaco and then south to Treasure Cay. Unlike last years Exuma trip, we plan, weather permiting, to make the trip from the US to final spot in one day, that will be about 196 miles one way, also plan to do the same on the return leg. We know this is doable because last year we left Staniel Cay, Exuma and made it to Bimini in a little over 8 hours covering 220 miles.

The members who will be going via boat or ski are:
@Andy S - 2016 Cobalt R5
@1948Isaac - 2015 Yamaha AR240
@Ramblin Wreck - 2015 Yamhama FXHO
@robert843 - 2013 Kawasaki Ultra LX

The new member to the group and the only one that is flying in is @veedubtek plus his crew. Also flying in are the families of @robert843 and @Ramblin Wreck.

We have a couple Delorme Inreach units and a Spot Connect GPS that will be with us so we will post a link here before we leave so anyone who wants to follow along can. I have made a list of GPS spots we plan on visiting and once we get back from Abaco I will be happy to share the updated list with anyone.

Looking forward to another great trip with great friends and sharing our experiences with this community.
 

Bruce

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#2
Andy, this sounds like so much fun. I hope you guys have smooth water for the long runs in each direction.
 

robert843

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#4
Andy, this sounds like so much fun. I hope you guys have smooth water for the long runs in each direction.
We sure hope so! @Andy S hit it on the head the toughest part of the planing was figuring out where to stay and what items to hit we probably debated as a group what location to stay at for 2-3 months and the end result changed probably 3 times lol. Planing for items to go see on the water was really tough as well but @Andy S has compiled an excellent list. The planing for that part was difficult as when we would try and get info from those in the know we kept getting similar answers and none were really offering snorkeling spot they all would give us like 5 islands to hit and say check out this bar or restaurant which really isn't what we were looking for. There doesn't seem to be a ton of ship wrecks or plane wrecks to dive and when we would finally hear or find out about one no would could tell us where they were so it made researching these things tough mad props to @Andy S for pulling it off though.

#Abaco2017
 
Last edited:

Bruce

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#5
@robert843, I find that with all Bahamas information the good stuff only comes out over rum, Kaliks or cigars. It seems to be a tradition like island time.
 

Andy S

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#6
Here is the route we plan on taking to Treasure Cay, Abaco. You can see Bimini in the lower left half of the map.

Abaco Route.jpg
 

robert843

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#7
@robert843, I find that with all Bahamas information the good stuff only comes out over rum, Kaliks or cigars. It seems to be a tradition like island time.
Hopefully it works out that way as there were A couple sites I was interested in we never found. There are apparently two sites that have civil era locomotives sunk that would be over 100 years old now I was really interested in but never found the locations and was given many different locations they were but none verified and the were anywhere from Marsh Harbor to Man of war, to Elbow Cay to Fowl Cay so none of the info was really all that accurate to be that spread around. There are a couple old ship wrecks offshore from the 1800's as well but most are to deep to snorkel.

#Abaco2017
 
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robert843

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#8
@Andy S thanks for posting that so your chart does have you running south of Sale Cay?

#Abaco2017
 
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Andy S

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#9
Hopefully it works out that way as there were A couple sites I was interested in we never found. There are apparently two sites that have civil era locomotives sunk that would be over 100 years old now I was really interested in but never found the locations and was given many different locations they were but none verified and the were anywhere from Marsh Harbor to Man of war, to Elbow Cay to Fowl Cay so none of the info was really all that accurate to be that spread around. There are a couple old ship wrecks offshore from the 1800's as well but most are to deep to snorkel.
The best intel I have and can confirm on the civil war locomotives is they are off the coast of Eleuthera, Bahamas near the northern town of Spanish Wells. In Abaco most of the best snorkeling will be around the numerous reefs up and down the outer island of the Abaco chain.
@Andy S thanks for posting that so your chart does have you running south of Shale Cay?
Do you mean Great Sale Cay? If so, yes we will be going south of there.
 

robert843

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#10
The best intel I have and can confirm on the civil war locomotives is they are off the coast of Eleuthera, Bahamas near the northern town of Spanish Wells. In Abaco most of the best snorkeling will be around the numerous reefs up and down the outer island of the Abaco chain.

Do you mean Great Sale Cay? If so, yes we will be going south of there.
I have some pretty solid info about the location of the one on Eleuthera but several locations report two sites in Abaco as well but who knows for sure since I never could get them confirmed I did find one person who said he had snorkeled one of them but he put them at Fowl Cay which is way off from the other info I had heard so I'm not sure I believe that. Yes sorry Sale Cay my chart had me going north of it and I wasn't sure why as it looked like the southern route was shorter and passable

#Abaco2017

sale cay.png

.
 

Andy S

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#11
I have some pretty solid info about the location of the one on Eleuthera but several locations report two sites in Abaco as well but who knows for sure since I never could get them confirmed I did find one person who said he had snorkeled one of them but he put them at Fowl Cay which is way off from the other info I had heard so I'm not sure I believe that. Yes sorry Sale Cay my chart had me going north of it and I wasn't sure why as it looked like the southern route was shorter and passable

#Abaco2017

View attachment 56992

.
My GPS and the charts in the Dodge Abaco book have the preferred route going south of Great Sale Cay, so we should be safe taking the southerly route.

My buddy Mike and his son Marshal are going to rent scuba gear, so maybe we can get some dive/snorkel spots from the dive shop and finally put the location of the locomotives to bed.
 

Andy S

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#13
@Andy S, have you checked Navionics to see what community points exist?
No but I'm a member of Active Captain which has similar community points and is linked into my Garmin HomePort on my computer.
 

Bruce

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#14
@robert843 there is a mooring ball for a dive spot north of Fowl Cay.

IMG_2043.PNG

@Andy S, Navionics USA is $10 for your phone. I see lots of community points in the area. I would be happy to look some up for you.
 

Andy S

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#15
@robert843 there is a mooring ball for a dive spot north of Fowl Cay.

View attachment 56994

@Andy S, Navionics USA is $10 for your phone. I see lots of community points in the area. I would be happy to look some up for you.
@Bruce, thanks for the offer but I just purchased and loaded it on my phone. From my quick look the 2 plane wrecks that I have found aren't on Navionics but I will keep looking for new points of interest.
 

Bruce

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#16
@Andy S, the community edits on Navionics are not always accurate but I find them to be helpful. I believe they have a larger user base so they may more points marked out.
 

robert843

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#17
@robert843 there is a mooring ball for a dive spot north of Fowl Cay.

View attachment 56994

@Andy S, Navionics USA is $10 for your phone. I see lots of community points in the area. I would be happy to look some up for you.
Fowl Cay is a known snorkeling spot it is actually a Bahamas National Park so there is a mooring ball for the reef. The guy I talked to said it was in the reef there I'm sure we will be there at some point but it is a known enough spot that if the train was there it would probably be well documented.

#Abaco2017
 
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robert843

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#19
Last edited:

2nazt

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#20
Wish I could make the run! School has me busy every day this summer though. If you guys need anything from an extra handheld VHF, handheld GPS,or InReach let me know. You'll be passing my house on the way. Looking forward to hearing about your trip. I have friends over there right now and other buddies make multiple trips to Green Turtle Cay also.
 
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