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Lubbers Quarters Cay, Abaco, Bahamas
The 2001 Trip Report

Saturday 3/31/01

We flew from Washington National on US Airways to West Palm Beach, then Continental Connections
(aka: Gulfstream International) to Marsh Harbor. Unfortunately we experienced a 2 hour delay
leaving West Palm Beach due to Continental Connections having neither a plane nor a pilot
available. We all had to wait for a pilot to drive over in her car from Fort Lauderdale.
Somewhere along the way the pilot also managed to pick up a plane and a co-pilot. After finally arriving in
Marsh Harbor airport at about 5:00, we took a taxi into town ($13). We asked the driver to stop
off at the Golden Harvest (a grocery store) to pick up some last minute groceries. Went thru the
store like game show contestants in a timed shopping spree. We were worried about hurrying to get
the rental boat and then out to the island in the daylight, especially since our flight had
delayed our schedule by 2 hours. Fortunately, picking up our rental boat from Sea Horse Marine in
Boat Harbor took almost no time and we were able to zip out to Lubbers Quarters Cay, a trip of
about 20 minutes, before sunset.

Sunday, 4/1/01

Do you have any idea how hard it is to find a store open on a Sunday in the Bahamas that sells
toilet paper? The house had none when we arrived. Our first priority this morning was to go to
Hopetown and look for a grocery store. Unfortunately, the only two grocery stores in Hopetown
were closed on Sunday. A very friendly store clerk in the only gift shop open in Hopetown told us
about a "convenience" store that should probably be open for about another 2 hours. It was only
about a 20 minute walk south of town towards White Sound. We decided to go for it. After all, we
weren't sure how much longer we could "hold things in". It was a fantastic little store out in
the middle of nowhere. It was very well stocked and had a little bit of everything you could
possibly need, especially our much needed toilet paper. With our valuable purchases tucked under
our arm, we walked back to town just in time for lunch at Harbors Edge Restaurant, which true to
its name, is right on the edge of the harbor. If Diane had pushed her chair back too far, she'd
fall into the water! After lunch we hopped into the boat for the 100 foot cruise across to the
other side of the harbor where we re-docked the boat and visited the historic red and white candy
striped Hopetown lighthouse built back in 1863. (The only way to get from one side of the harbor
to the other is by boat.) We climbed the internal spiral staircase to the top where you can walk
around the outside of the light. The 360 degree view from the top is fabulous ! If you don't do
it you're crazy ! Just make sure your hat is tied on, it was very windy that day. We could see
all of Hopetown below us and way beyond. We could see our island, Lubbers Quarters Cay to the
southwest. Speaking of our island, it was time to return home for supper. The groceries were
still in the boat and the milk should probably be refrigerated.

Monday, 4/2/01

First thing in the morning we returned to Hopetown to finish our grocery shopping. We wanted some
fresh baked Bahamian bread and we had read that the best place to get your bread in the Hopetown
area is from Vernon's Upper Crust Bakery Shop. With our shopping done we headed out for Man-O-War
Cay. We checked out Joe's Studio, (which is a very nice gift shop where we bought several prints
by a local artist) and also the Sail Shop (where they make canvas goods of every imaginable size
and color). After the touristy shopping spree, we walked across the island to the ocean side, a
walk that may take you all of about 5 minutes. We enjoyed a nice walk along the sandy ocean beach
before we returned to our boat. On our way home we stopped off at "Cracker P's" which is a small
restaurant on the southern half of Lubbers Quarters Cay. There we enjoyed fish and conch burgers
with fresh conch salad before returning home.

Tuesday, 4/3/01

Today we took the boat south past the Pelican Cays Land and Sea Park to Little Harbor. A trip of
about 45 minutes. Little Harbor is a small, quiet, artist's settlement way out at the end of
nowhere. We walked around town, which takes about 5 minutes, checked out the local art gallery,
and then started along the dirt road heading out of town. Some very friendly locals gave us
directions to Bookies Beach, about a 15 minute walk south of town to a very beautiful, sandy beach
which we thoroughly enjoyed entirely by ourselves for the next two hours. Hunger pangs forced us
to finally leave the beach and head back into town for lunch at Pete's Pub, the only commercial
establishment with food. Then with full bellies, we hopped back on the boat and headed back home
to the north. We stopped at Sandy Cay for some snorkeling, however, the area is very exposed and
the wind and seas were a little rough so we didn't stay long. We were the only ones there.

Wednesday, 4/4/01

This morning we got up early and headed for the marina at White Sound to fill up the gas tank. We
were heading for Great Guana Cay and Spoil Bank Cay. The Sea of Abaco was the flattest/calmest
we'd seen so far. It only took us about an hour to reach Spoil Bank Cay where we pulled up on the
beach joining 4 other boats. We found Spoil Bank Cay to be a great place for beachcombing and
looking for seashells. The beach is littered with a real nice variety of shells. Every now and
then I'd bend over to pick up a shell and it would start scurrying away from me! It turned out
that many of the shells were homes to hermit crabs. We spent about an hour walking up and down
the beach. When we went back to the boat to leave we found a beautiful dinner-plate sized Sea
Star just 3 feet from the shoreline in about knee deep water. It was a beautiful deep ruby red
with yellow specks on it. Neither of us had ever seen a real live Sea Star before! As we watched
and photographed it for about 15 minutes, we noticed it was ever so slowly crawling along the
bottom. Thinking about dinner plates brought out our hunger pangs again, so we headed off to the
harbor at Great Guana Cay settlement for lunch at Nipper's. Nipper's has a real nice location on
top of a high sand dune looking out east over the Atlantic Ocean. You can sit on their stools,
enjoy the breeze, eat your lunch and enjoy one of the best views imaginable. It's supposed to be
a great bar for drinks, but since the hardest thing we drink is plain old Coke on the Rocks, that
amenity was lost on us.

After lunch, we walked about the small village for awhile. Afterward, we still had a good portion
of the afternoon left so we headed back to a small snorkeling reef located just east of Tilloo Cay
near a house that looks like a castle. The reef here was much smaller than the one we'd seen at
Sandy Cay. However, while the coral and the fish here were smaller, they were just as beautiful.
We saw several more Sea Stars, some Sea Slugs (looked like garden slugs only they were about 18
inches long, 3 inches in diameter and ruby red in color), Barracuda, and several flowery looking
coral plants that would immediately retract their feathery tendrils as we swam by.

After snorkeling we enjoyed a leisurely snack on board the boat before we returned home. After
tying the boat to the dock we noticed a Spotted Stingray feeding just a few feet off the end of
the dock. We laid on the dock and watched him for awhile till he took off. We continued to lay
on the dock admiring the parade of fish that swam beneath us. All of a sudden a large Southern
Stingray glided by, startling both of us! When it got near time for the sunset, we scurried
around the back of the house and followed the 5 minute path to our private beach on the other side
of Lubbers Quarters Cay. We were treated to a beautiful, colorful sunset that night.

Thursday, 4/5/01

Today we went back to Sandy Cay for snorkeling. The wind and the seas were a lot calmer this day
so we spent the whole morning at one of the day moorings set up for small boats. After a few
hours of snorkeling (seeing Stingrays, Barracudas, a Sea Turtle, and a miriad of other beautiful
colorful fish) we left and headed to a real nice secluded deserted sandy beach on one of the small
uninhabited Parrot Cays. We enjoyed the beach and island to ourselves until a young family of 5
decided to motor over and join us on the beach. We explored an old deserted home located at the
highest point on the island. It looked like the house had been destroyed in a hurricane many
years ago. On the way back home we stopped off at the community dock on the southern end of
Lubbers Quarters Cay. When we were originally researching our vacation, we had read about several
other places to rent on the southern end of Lubbers and we wanted to check them out. What we
found was a small community of private and rental homes located on a small network of dirt roads.

Friday, 4/6/01

According to the Cruiser's Net radio broadcast, the weather wasn't supposed to be real great
today. Therefore we decided to get up a little later in the morning and then boat over to Marsh
Harbor. We found a convenient car/scooter/bicycle rental shop just outside the gates of Boat
Harbor Marina where we rented a pair of bikes. We spent the next 2 hours biking around Marsh
Harbor checking out all the gift shops and getting ice cream. We had a hard time finding nice
postcards. We biked around to the northern side of the harbor which appeared to be the fancier
residential area.

On the way back to Lubbers we stopped off at the Abaco Inn in White Sound for the fancy supper of
our vacation. Space was a little tight at the Abaco Inn dock, but we managed to find a narrow
slot between two large catamarans. We were easily identifiable as less experienced in our rental
boat, but the other cruisers hanging out on the dock were very nice and friendly and were a
welcome helping hand getting us tied up. Come to think of it, everyone we met in the Abaco area
was nice and friendly. We had a great view out over the Atlantic Ocean from our table at the Inn
as well as a great seafood supper. We managed to get back to our dock on Lubbers before dark when
our rental boat insurance would turn null and void.

Saturday, 4/7/01

What can I say about today. Ending a fun vacation is always depressing. We finished packing from
the night before, said our last goodbyes to our lovely Moonrise Cottage, and took the boat out for
our last cruise back to Marsh Harbor. Arriving at the airport we found mass pandemonium. It
seems several planes had been delayed and there were lines of people and piles of luggage
everywhere in the small airport "lounge". People were spilling out into the parking lot. We
lucked out, our plane left right on time, in fact it was about 5 minutes early. Taking off to the
east, we got our last parting views of Marsh Harbor, Hopetown, and Lubbers Quarters Cay before we
got lost in the clouds.

We finally got back to our home in Maryland around 8:30 pm with 9 rolls of film and 7 days of
wonderful memories. We've already started to plan next year's spring break in the Bahamas.




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last revised : July 18, 2004