Thursday, January 26, 2017
South Side Dolphins
Hi All, As predicted a front came threw in a fury of high winds and big waves. Also, predicted that it would be gone by Wednesday AM. All came true. The water on the North side is all riled up but there's hope that the South side will be nice. A quick call to our friends Ted and Suz that have a house with a spectacular view of the South side and they confirm, its flat. We turn right out of the marina John cranks up the engine to get on a plain and we fly out past the wreck. The water in some places is only one foot deep at low tide and the only way not to get stuck is to fly! We decide on going to French Cay. The unbelievably flat water stretches on all sides. We travel for miles and are soon out of sight of land. As the sunlight hits the water it twinkles in every direction. I'm thinking we are in heaven on earth. There are some big sailing vessels taking advantage of the calm waters. We strain our eyes to see a tiny mound on the horizon. As the mound grows and turns into an island, we see many birds circling. French Cay is a bird sanctuary where pelagic birds come to have their babies. Once past French Cay, we motor out past the wall where the deep dark blue water surrounds the Caicos Islands. We drop the hydrophone in hoping to hear some whale activity. No spouts, no groans. John decides to snorkel on the reef surrounding the island. I stay on Spy Hop watching the brown Noddys swoop down searching for prey along the water. There are some frightening radio transmissions that start coming across our hand held radio. Apparently there is a fishing boat that is taking on water near North West Point. There is discussion about bilge pumps and ways to stay afloat until someone can get there. Then a truly awful one comes across. The Coast Guard helicopter it seems is spotting bodies in the water. Apparently there was a sloop with Haitians trying to sneak into Turks and Caicos that over turned yesterday in the really bad seas. Yikes here I am sitting on Spy Hop with the water looking like heaven on earth hearing this dreadful news. Never underestimate the sea's ability to change. Once John's done snorkeling, we take one last look for whales then start heading back. I see dorsals! There are three dolphins. We find them on the bank where the water is shallow but the water is murky and visibility is still terrible from the front yesterday. I get in and they swim up to check me out but when they dive they totally disappear from view. Once back on the boat I notice a new and distinctive dorsal has shown up. Now there are four. We sit in our little spot in heaven watching the dolphins as best we can. The only sound is the "kwok" "kwok" of the brown Noddys over head and the "Pffff" as the dolphins surface near the boat. I'm not sure why but dolphins seem to be drawn to boats. They sink down again then appear announcing themselves with the pfffs. Its time to head back across this beautiful flat, twinkly, blue water. On our way I see another dorsal and John notices his rostrum is a bit deformed. I want a better view but this dolphins is doing some speed fishing! There's no catching up to him! Its getting late and we need to head back to the marina before it gets dark. Away we go!