As we sat in the marina waiting for a weather window to head to Bermuda, we quickly realized that the season had closed and we weren't going to make it to Bermuda in a safe manner. Gale forc storms seemed to become a weekly occurnace and constantly pushed our departure date back again and again. Then we decided that it was getting too cold to wait here and we should just sail south to wait out better weather. That led to the idea of heading to the Bahamas for the winter and going to Bermuda in the spring!
This was an easy decision for us, the weird weather had reversed the prevailing winds making the winds up the east coast actually blow south! The weather has been very odd this year.
We decided to trade our freezing winter crossing for a much more tropical approach to cruising, and what better place than the Bahamas! These islands will be challenging for us though, as we draw 6.5 feet, so we probably won't be able to visit all of them as these waters are notoriously shallow.
Anyways, now that we knew where we wanted to go, it was just a matter of deciding when. Our first thought was "Tomorrow!" While this was a good thought, the weather was less than inviting. The weather that day was blowing around 30 knots (in the right direction though) but the wind was also a chilly 55F. To add to the misery, it was also raining very hard that entire day. So, as people who have newly discovered the concept of comfortable living on a cruise, we decided to go "the next day!"
When we left Deltaville, the winds were very light, but we were on a run. I wanted us to get to the mouth of the bay by 8pm because I thought that was around sunset. I figured out our minimum speed and motor sailed us at that rate as I struggled to get us to the bridge before dark. Around 6pm, the sun looked a little too low on the horizon and that is when it struck me, winter is coming and the sun sets earlier now. At 6:20pm, the sun was down, and so was our anchor.
We had only made 16 of the 40 nautical miles we needed to cover to get out of the bay. I was very disappointed in myself for not actually looking at what time the sun really sets! I based all of my calculations off of what I thought was true instead of investigating what really is true.