LAHOWIND » Just you, me, + the dog.

Our first night sail!

(Crooked Island, Bahamas)

Wanna meet the newest and biggest fan of night sailing???

That would be…ME!!!!!!!!!!!

That is, if it’s anything like the passage we had from Pittstown, Crooked Island to Atwood Habour, Acklins Island. It was A-W-E-S-O-M-E!

Okay, truth be told, we might have only motor-sailed the whole way because we were beating into the wind, but regardless the night sail was still perfect in my book.

image

The waves were small-ish.

The temperature was cool-ish.

The sky was crystal clear.

The moon was high and bright.

It was perfect really.

image

We once again followed Bruce Van Sant’s advice from his book >>Passages South<<and opted for a night sail on this leg of our trip. (PS – if you’re a first-time cruiser sailing the Caribbean, you definitely might want to check out this book!)

We weighed anchor around 2AM and motored out of the anchorage in Pittstown (Crooked Island) and headed back into open water as we sailed up and around the island and eastward towards Acklins Island. We were able to sail right along the coast of both islands since they are such close neighbors and practically make for one large island.

I thought for sure as soon as we weighed anchor and headed out, I’d want to fall right back asleep in my cozy cockpit chair while Jer took the first shift, but it was SO magical out there, I couldn’t sleep a wink!

The clear night sky was filled with millions and millions of shining stars. Really the brightest and best star gazing I’ve ever seen! I could’ve stared up at the sky all night long.

There was >>bioluminescence<< sparkling in the ocean that grabbed my attention too! With each wave we sailed through, hundreds of tiny fluorescent blue organisms would light up in our wake. It was like we were throwing handfuls of blue glitter into the ocean with each passing wave. It was awesome and I really wish I had been able to get a photo!

I literally sat up on my knees on the cockpit locker taking turns looking down at the sparkling waves and back up into the beautiful star-filled sky. I could’ve done that for hours. But eventually my exhaustion got the best of me and I dozed off only to be awoken by Jer at 6AM for my turn at the helm.

image

While ^^Jer quickly dozed off^^ I was greeted by a beautiful sunrise on the water. I ran down below deck to grab my camera for a few photos. I mean, it was golden hour after all so far be it for me to miss out on a photo opp. ;))

image

^^what a sunrise over the open water!^^

We arrived at Atwood Harbour, Acklins Island around 9AM with plenty of light to see the large reef that lines the entrance to the anchorage. We had no problem navigating into the secluded anchorage, and dropped anchor around 9:30AM.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed for many more perfect night sails just like this.

>>Thanks for visiting LAHOWIND sailing blog! We’d love for you to get to know us and follow our story as we attempt to navigate a whole new world of sailing, as we cruise the Bahamas + Caribbean.

Jennifer - Luna SeaJune 19, 2014 - 12:08 pm

Sounds perfect!

AprilJune 19, 2014 - 12:36 pm

Night sailing is the best! It’s even cooler when you are out away from the sight of land in any direction and a thunderstorm rolls past in the distance lighting up the sky. Once on a trip across the Gulf of Mexico, I watched a full moon come up over the horizon bright red. Then the red practically dripped off of it as it rose and turned orange and then white. I love sailing at night!

Skelton CrewJune 19, 2014 - 1:37 pm

I can’t wait to do our first night sail! Although ours will be on Lake Michigan so I don’t think we’ll have the bioluminescence :( So glad you guys had a great experience! ~Jackie

Viki MooreJune 20, 2014 - 12:04 am

I think some of my most special moments are alone on deck in the middle of the night. On a recent passage down the coast of the South Island of New Zealand, I was on watch, the sky was so clear that I could even see satellites tracking across the sky, and there were dolphins swimming alongside in the bio-luminescence – it was almost surreal!
Gorgeous photos!

Kelley - Sailing ChanceJune 20, 2014 - 1:31 am

I always take the shift where I get to watch the sunrise. It’s my favorite part! So magical.

[…] oceany/islandy/sailing centric. Weird. We downloaded the whole record on iTunes before our first >>overnight passage<< and I’m pretty sure we’ve listened to it in its entirety about 45,000 times since. […]