We enjoyed two fabulously calm nights at anchor over on the west side of Mayaguana the other week.
We hadn’t planned on stopping in Betsy Bay, but after a super long (for us) 16-hour sail from Acklins Island we were running out of daylight and made the call to anchor on the west side of Mayaguana instead of trekking 12 more miles to Abraham’s Bay on the south side.
Betsy Bay (or Besty Bay as our Garmin likes to call it, lol) is an interesting anchorage in that the water depth over there hits over 1,000 feet deep less than a third of a mile from shore. The ocean floor must just completely drop off until oblivion. It’s crazy to watch the depth finder on the way in and out.
Most of the charts we referenced indicated the Betsy Bay anchorage as having poor holding and a hard bottom; however, we had absolutely no issues anchoring about 800 to 1,000 feet from shore. I would caution anyone in trying to get much closer than that as the sea floor is packed to the brim with coral heads and what appears to be a rock bottom in most areas any closer.
What was really great about this anchorage (aside from being perfectly calm) is that the shoreline is covered with TONS of dead coral pieces and intact yet empty (i.e. no live conch inside) baby conch shells. I could’ve spent hours combing through the different coral pieces and collecting conch shells. It was so beautiful!
^^I’m weirdly obsessed with this image. I’ve already decided it will be a huge wall canvas in our home one day.^^
While we were anchored in Betsy Bay, we saw tons of sea life…from cute little sea turtles popping their heads out of water to say hello, a few huge barracuda swimming by, and even…get this…two nurse sharks having “sexy time.” Yes, you read that right. We literally stumbled upon two nurse sharks living it up in the shallow waters right off shore. Quite the sight I must tell you. We actually thought one shark was killing the other at first. hah! Turns out, summertime is prime mating season for sharks. ;))
Anywho, I’m pretty positive Jereme and I both wish we would have stayed anchored in Betsy Bay a bit longer. We unfortunately left that anchorage after two days and sailed around to our originally intended anchorage (Abraham’s Bay) as we got ready to jump off to Turks + Caicos. Abraham’s Bay was horribly choppy and rolly, making for two SUPER uncomfortable nights at anchor while we waited for the right weather window to cross to Providenciales. We did bust out the >>swell bridle<< again and that helped a bit, but it was still no comparison to our perfect nights in Betsy Bay.
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