List Your Boat Click for Cheoy Lee Click for Llebroc Click for Lurssen Click for Walker

Bimini is a ghost town...

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by Pascal, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    13,060
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale
    I've anchored a mile or so east of Cat Cay on the bank and never had an issue. Yeah you swing around with tide, but I've never had an issue pulling anchor. I've also anchored about a mile southeast on the concrete ship and didn't have an issue either. But I usually let out A LOT of chain when anchoring overnight, just because it doesn't hurt to have extra out there.....

    Yeah.......I remember when they used to come to the boat in Bimini and check you in if you were staying at Big Game........not anymore...... IMO everything about Bimini is a pain in the butt.
  2. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Messages:
    2,406
    Location:
    Ft. Lauderdale
    Yeah come on down and bring Tony and them guys..(I wanne leajn how to tailk like 'em) :D

    Beers on me and we can sit on my dock and admire the view across the canal: No mo' ugly ferro boat to look at..:rolleyes:

    Me too..I have more anchor alarms than God, but in the story above we were sittin in the cockpit sipping a cold one..When ya least expect it..Bang..:mad:

    Certain parts of the HH botton is sand with grass over rock, it may hold up to XX knots, but if the wind picks up you will drag.

    Yeah, good holding can be found other places, but HH is not so good...:(
    Anchored East of Gun/North Cat and West of Gun several times.
    A public anchorage East of the runway at North Cat can be pretty comfy even without East or South protection.

    As for good anchorages in the Bimini area, Behind the rocks at Paradise Point use to be a quiet little stand-by hole while we waited for good banks-crossing but lately construction have made it noisy and dusty.
    Still have surge up there and some rollers, but a spring on the anchor chain will trade the rolling for more gentle pitching, if any.

    Have used Nixon harbour many times in North or North West winds and it works great until the wind clocks around to the South and ya have to get out at 0400 in rain and squalls blowing 25 knots. (No points for using a chart plotter to find the way out between the rocks...Too easy :rolleyes: )

    Aye, thread-creep, guilty as always. :p
  3. stevenpet

    stevenpet New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2008
    Messages:
    96
    Location:
    Monterey, Maui, Salt Lake City
    Bimini Bay Controversy on Wikipedia

    This is from Wikipedia.

    "Bimini Bay controversy

    In May 2008, marine conservationist Jean-Michel Cousteau criticized Bimini Bay Resort, calling it a "catastrophe" and announcing, "allowing Bimini Bay to continue with phase II would certainly strip this island paradise of its precious natural riches. Over time, visitors and residents alike will suffer the decline of economic, social and environmental prosperity..."[11] In response, some Bimini residents disagreed with Cousteau and voiced their support for Bimini Bay Resort, citing its environmental protections and economic promise.[12]"


    Those may have seemed like harsh words back in May 2008, but from the posts above, they may already be ringing true in March 2009.
  4. CaptNeil

    CaptNeil Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    Messages:
    94
    Location:
    East Coast
    Stephen:
    I think that the problems associated with the Bahamas is more of a function of a government that has discouraged tourism by raising fees and implementing large restrictions on foreign boaters than development run crazy. The Bahamas has historically been a close destination that was relatively cheap to go to. I even know of a few people that have sailed across in 16' Hobie cats for the weekend! Those days are long gone. If the Bahamas doesn't do something to encourage the boating tourist to come back they are going to be in even worse shape in the next few years. The current US administration is hinting at lifting the Cuban restrictions. If this happens the Bahamian Government may seriously want to rethink their policies.
  5. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    5,636
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    Stephen,

    first let's not forget that Wikipedia is a user contributed resource and should always be taken with a grain of salt. Also, as much i respect the environment, if you listen to many groups, no dredging, marina building and boating woudl take place anywhere to protect everything from seaweeds to each grain of sand.

    that said, i do have mixed feelings about Bimini Bay. On the plus side, it is nice to have a modern marina in bimini and an improved channel to get in.

    on the downside, they destroyed a huge stretch of beach, removing every tree. Teh first thing one notices approaching Bimini is the 1 or 2 miles cut in the trees. On the north side of the resort, heading towards the northern tip, they appear to be starting more construction although the beach and the trees lining it are still intact.. I hope they dont' chop it all off to give "old men in funny pants" aka golfers a better view of the ocean :)

    both extremes are bad, the tree huggers who prevents anything from being built or dredged, and the over the top developpers which dont' integrate resorts and facilities in the environement.
  6. Capt Bill11

    Capt Bill11 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2006
    Messages:
    1,436
    Location:
    Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale FL
    "The current US administration is hinting at lifting the Cuban restrictions. If this happens the Bahamian Government may seriously want to rethink their policies."

    Sadly, don't count on it just yet.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSN2346531520080724

    Historically any time that has come close to happening, Castro has done something to F it up. It's always been in his best interest to keep the embargo up.
  7. VikHatBer

    VikHatBer New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2008
    Messages:
    121
    Location:
    Miami, FL and the Keys
    "Look out Atlantis..."

    In 10-20 years, watch the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and many other islands in the Caribbean basin get robbed by the beauty and utility of a 600 mile long island only 100 miles off Florida's coast. Cuba is far prettier, its people smarter and more industrious, and its women far more beautiful than any other Caribbean island.

    Cuba's Southern coast is virtually desolate. There are hundreds of miles of flats, and concentric rings of coral reefs that radiate from Cuba's Southern coast. The few tourist centers outside of Havana are quaint and blend into the terrain. There is even a nightclub in Trinidad (South Coast) that is located inside of a giant cave. If you are an island in the stream that is not Cuba, take cover when Cuba opens up.

    As an avid Cuba boater from 1994 to about 2004, I know Cuba pretty well. Obama will have to go out of his way to keep the Castro brothers from intentionally distancing themselves from economic/political reform. Look for more publicized acts of barbarianism on the part of the Cuban gov't that will keep it hard for Obama to enter talks.
  8. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    10,316
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    For those who enjoy Cuba, pray that the embargo continues for a long time and stop telling people what a great place it is. When the embargo lifts the coastline will be covered by condos and hotels in short order and the islands charm will be lost forever. I still remember the days before the Hamptons were "discovered".
  9. VikHatBer

    VikHatBer New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2008
    Messages:
    121
    Location:
    Miami, FL and the Keys

    Or the Florida Keys. They were taken over by baby boomer New Yorkers and now you can't get a piece of fish at a restaurant for less than $22. Oh yea, trailers go for half a million down here...
  10. brian eiland

    brian eiland Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,857
    Location:
    St Augustine, Fl and Thailand
    1974 in Bimini

    What a far cry from 1974...Bimini was hopping. Just a great little place, only a short trip off of Florida, and the introduction to the whole Bahamian chain of islands.

    I had some fun times there, and it was only reinforced by the brand new record album from Jimmy Buffett, "AIA". I'll know those songs by heart until I die

    Attached Files:

  11. Capt Bill11

    Capt Bill11 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2006
    Messages:
    1,436
    Location:
    Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale FL

    Nah, you can have this view in the Keys and the trailer that goes with it for $11,000 and $700 a month.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  12. stevenpet

    stevenpet New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2008
    Messages:
    96
    Location:
    Monterey, Maui, Salt Lake City
    Nostalgia RULES!

    Hey Brian,

    Thanks for sharing the pics and the memories. I was only 10 in 1974 so I wasn’t sporting a mustache nearly as cool at yours, nor would I have known what to do with three beautiful women on board.

    (But I think I rented the video when I was several years older.) :D
  13. brian eiland

    brian eiland Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,857
    Location:
    St Augustine, Fl and Thailand
    Party in Bimini

    Hi Steven,
    The fellow with the mustache was one of my best friends and my partner in that 47' wood sailboat. I'm the blond headed guy.

    We did have fun on that particular trip to Bimini. We took along a renegade young lady who was visiting Ft Laud from NYC, and who we gave the nic-name 'space cadet'. She made a great companion in ALL of our adventures.

    We also took along a sailing catamaran as our dingy. Boy, was that a hit. We had every young lady from all the other yachts standing in line for rides. The mornings (late) were spent going for a sail with our heads dipping the cool water (sobering). The afternoons were spent giving rides and preparing for the evening festivities.

    After closing down the bars, the party reverted to the boat where we managed to keep a number of the neighboring vessels awake with lots of Jimmy Buffett. (the fishing guys were particularly annoyed as they woke early to go fishing). We on the other hand were fishing for something else ;)

    This song in particular, was a favorite from that A1A album


    A Pirate Looks at 40

    Song and lyrics by: Jimmy Buffett
    A1A, 1974

    Mother, mother ocean, I have heard you call
    Wanted to sail upon your waters since I was three feet tall
    You've seen it all, you've seen it all

    Watched the men who rode you switch from sails to steam
    And in your belly you hold the treasures few have ever seen
    Most of 'em dream, most of 'em dream

    Yes I am a pirate, two hundred years too late
    The cannons don't thunder, there's nothin' to plunder
    I'm an over-forty victim of fate
    Arriving too late, arriving too late

    I've done a bit of smugglin', I've run my share of grass
    I made enough money to buy Miami, but I pissed it away so fast
    Never meant to last, never meant to last

    And I have been drunk now for over two weeks
    I passed out and I rallied and I sprung a few leaks
    But I got stop wishin', got to go fishin'
    Down to rock bottom again
    Just a few friends, just a few friends

    (instrumental)

    I go for younger women, lived with several awhile
    Though I ran 'em away, they'd come back one day
    Still could manage to smile
    Just takes a while, just takes a while

    Mother, mother ocean, after all the years I've found
    My occupational hazard being my occupation's just not around
    I feel like I've drowned, gonna head uptown

    Coda:
    I feel like I've drowned, gonna head uptown

    Attached Files:

  14. VikHatBer

    VikHatBer New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2008
    Messages:
    121
    Location:
    Miami, FL and the Keys
    Those pictures look great. You have three really good looking women on board! Were they 'boat trained' or did they complain about bed bugs and small bathrooms?

    What a dump Bimini has become. Once the Compleat Angler burnt down that was the end.
  15. brian eiland

    brian eiland Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,857
    Location:
    St Augustine, Fl and Thailand
    'space cadet' from NYC didn't complain about a thing...she was an absolute sport.

    The other two in the shot were visitors from other yachts that happen to be on board when the photo was taken.

    That really is too bad about the current state of affairs in Bimini.

    I visited Cuba back in '98-'99 just so I could experience it before BIG changes that were forcasted. Those may be coming now that the USA is going to relax restrictions. I only wished I had visited even sooner, as I was told by some other old hands.
  16. VikHatBer

    VikHatBer New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2008
    Messages:
    121
    Location:
    Miami, FL and the Keys
    I don't think my generation will ever realize how great things were just a few short years ago. I think Bimini has been "off the map" since at least 2000. In Bimini, it used to be you went to local haunts to eat local food, hire local guides to fish local waters, and dock at marinas built, managed, and operated by locals. Nowadays, the food at these fancy resorts is probably shipped in from Miami or Lauderdale, just like the captains, and the marinas are owned by foreign conglomerates.

    My first time to Cuba was in '98. My dad went over in '94. He was one of the first to venture back since the late 70's/early 80's when tournaments were just getting started at Marina Hemingway.
  17. VikHatBer

    VikHatBer New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2008
    Messages:
    121
    Location:
    Miami, FL and the Keys
    Brian Eiland - You know that takes a lot of skill to put a sailboat where you did at the Big Game Club! Trust me, I know exactly where that slip is. The current is quite swift at that marina. That must be hard to put a single screw vessel with a big bowsprit into an interior slip like that.
  18. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    13,060
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Heck, it's hard to put a sportfish into that slip. The current used to rip through big game marina.
  19. brian eiland

    brian eiland Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,857
    Location:
    St Augustine, Fl and Thailand
    Small Sea Story

    Better story than that. On that particular trip to Bimini there came up a storm with big winds from the SW, and we ended up north of the cut between the reef. So we had to beat upwind (south) in a short steep chop when the engine failed to start. One Morgan OI sailboat actually got driven up onto the beach, it was so nasty.

    Turns out the engine would not start due to a high pressure fuel leak in a exit line from the mech pressure pump for the diesel. This sent a 'mist' of fuel all over the bilge, that then floated on top of the bilge water and sloshed about the whole boat in the rough conditions. Walking below became extremely slippery.

    Now we are beating down the coast of Bimini to get into position to run into the cut of the reef. Without an engine I knew I only had one chance to make that cut as we were going to be surfing some big waves with the wind behind us in towards the reef, and there would be no second chance. On top of that there were MAJOR rain squalls coming thru that cut visibility a LOT. And I have two inexperienced crew members.

    Bottom line, we surfed thru the cut, made a 90 degree turn and sailed up into the harbor behind Bimini, and anchored until the storm blew thru, and we could repair the fuel leak. My crew followed the sail handling just great. As you are aware, once thru that cut in the reef you have to turn almost perpendicular and sail up between the reef and the beach of that outer island.

    The next day we had to get to a dock so we could get the foul water out of the boat and try to clean up all the fuel soaked food stores and foam bedding. I think we bought most of the detergent available at the time in an attempt to soak up the water/fuel mess. It was a lot of work for a day and a half, after which we all three felt the need to PARTY !!!!...and it was full time party after that.

    (Happenstance, I was looking thru some old photos the other day and came across the photo of the Out Island vessel that got blown up on the beach)

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Apr 10, 2009
  20. Capt Bill11

    Capt Bill11 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2006
    Messages:
    1,436
    Location:
    Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale FL
    +1 on that!