written by Alpha/Charlie mate, Michael Harrington
August 9, 2017
We started off our day with a visit to a new island called Salt Island, which was right beside Cooper and as well as practicing anchoring for the first time, we also learned all about the history of Salt and the famous Wreck of the Rhone. 150 years ago, a 300ft combination steam/sailboat ran aground during a hurricane and sank off the shore. We also got to see the awesome salt ponds of which the island is named first, where they used to mine the salt from the island.
After that we went sailing again and put up two sails for the very first time. Our boat was zooming around so fast and it was exciting seeing how heeled over the yacht became when the wind was strong. We learned all about jibing and using preventers so the jibes were always safe and controlled. Our captains and mates showed us all about how to use the winches and what each rope did in each place. They even made us a cheesy dip for snacks while underway. It went down like a treat.
We anchored in the evening in a place called Dead Man’s Bay and we all jumped off the sides of the boat into the beautiful blue sea. We spent time swimming among the fish and sea life all around and underneath us.
In the late evening, we caught up with our Open Water Divers, who had been diving all day practicing taking their masks on and off under the water. They said they got to see a turtle and a shark – amazing! There ater was also a night dive for all of our advanced divers and they said couldn’t keep the smiles off their faces when they returned from the darker adventure.
We made delicious burritos for dinner and then we all worked together as a team to ensure the boat was clean before going to sleep. Tonight, we laid out under the stars thinking about how incredible the day and the program has already been. We are beyond excited to sail to Norman Island and the Pirate’s Bight tomorrow!
The greatest challenge during the program was staying entertained during the quarantine period. Not being able to leave your boat and not having a phone, which was a crutch against boredom, it was difficult at first to stay entertained.