After a 15 hour motoring and 81 km cross the Gulf Stream, we finally got to Mangrove Cay … most bigger sailboats still kept going to Great Sale Cay, another 4-5 hours.
We kept in contact with Snowbird, and they anchored about 1/2 hour before our arrival.
We had our radar at one mile and saw the boats at anchor, but it is still nerve racking to position your self with other boats at 8pm and in the dark.
Snowbird put on their cockpit light so we could see them, there was tons of space on either side of them, we chose the stb side.
As we slowly approached at 2 knots, we saw to our port side a boat coming in to anchor, we thought. Their red,green and white lights where high off the water, and we thought a power boat. But it was coming too fast to be anchoring.
In about 2 minutes, we realized it was not stopping and they did not see us.
Joe said turn now, now, now … I throttled up and turned to the oncoming vessel, we did a 180. The vessel then saw us and turned a 180 in the opposite direction, to avoid …., and it continued out into the banks. We got to see it now and it was a barge that was about 80 - 100 ft long pulling something, they didn't have AIS ..
With shaking legs, we watched it go off our radar screen.
This barge should of not been in an anchorage, and it was going at high speed
Snowbird saw us doing a 180 then a complete 360 and wondered why ?
We now think that the barge was on the other side of Snowbird when they turned the 180, Thank God
This was not the best ending, or was it, for a Gulf Stream crossing, and 15 hours on the water, hand steering.
We where too upset to sleep.
as I'm preparing this message a huge Cat came into White Sound,in the dark, Joe had to blow our horn, to make him aware that we are here .. when a boat is on a mooring ball you don't need to have your anchor light on … we are so paranoid now we have turned our anchor light on