sailing to nassau

Sailing To Nassau – Feeling Funny & Damn Fish

It couldn’t have been more than half an hour after we set sail when we heard the request for local information come across the VHF.

Another boater was responding before we could even pick up our VHF. “Yeah, I’m out here just past Slaughter Harbour and the winds are 15-18 knots and the seas are 6-8 feet, what size of boat are you?”

“38ft monohull” responded the inquiring boat.

“I wouldn’t attempt it if I were you, conditions should be better in a couple of days”.

I looked over at Jason who had the same puzzled expression I did.  Sure, we’ve seen better days but we certainly wouldn’t have said “I wouldn’t attempt it if I were you”.  Why give a response that instills fear and doubt?

We considered chiming in but decided against it.  It was one of those moments where we felt our newbie selves should keep our mouths shut.

It was also one of those moments that reminded us to continue to think, assess and test conditions for ourselves. Because what one person considers “not worth attempting” might seem like another fun day of sailing to us.  Or, on the flip side, what seemed like fine conditions to one sailor, could be our worst nightmare.

We’ve got our handy dandy Iridum Go that works with Predict Wind to update us on conditions, read the notes on our charts, check reviews on Active Captain, and use the wonderful world of the internet to search for any additional info.  Combine that with the knowledge we learned in sailing school, the bush worthy advice of Kent Grimbeek (AKA school of hard knocks), our own gut instincts and we feel as prepared as we can be.

So, with that in mind…if you’re ready for a couple of fun days at sea filled with crazy waves and fish on, hit the play button.

Our sail from the Berry Islands to Nassau was another well-appointed challenge from Mother Nature. It felt like just the right amount of action and excitement.  Luckily Jason’s moment of feeling funny was nothing more than hunger and not sea sickness.  I think our sea legs are growing stronger along with our confidence.  Now, if we can figure out how to land each fish we catch…we might just make it around this globe after all.

This is what fishermen call “paying your sea tax”.

sailing the bahamas

reading on a sailboat

Books and podcasts have become my favorite downtime sailing entertainment.

sunset in the bahamas

sailing to nassau

Sailing Report

To see our full map with interactive pins, click here:

exciting sail to nassauDates: January 16-17, 2017
Nautical Miles Sailed: 67.5
Anchorage: First Night was Alders Cay in the Berry Islands.  When we arrived to Nassau we anchored near Jaws Beach in the West Bay.  Both had good sandy bottom holding and plenty of room for lots of boats.
Cell & WiFi: Our BTC signal was decent and great with our booster on.  But what really came in handy here was our Wifi Ranger, we were able to pull in a free wifi connection that worked great in this anchorage.

Gear Used In This Video

Video on how to make no-slip dishes:

Cameras Used to Capture This Video:

Hello there! I honestly don’t know what to say, so I am going to tell you a bunch of random facts instead. I'm a fish eating vegetarian who hates spiders and loves snakes. I almost never took vacations growing up. I wanted to be Pippi Longstocking (still do). I misspell about every other word I write and still struggle with grammar. I love splurging on a good high tea (which is really hard to find these days). And whatever you do, don’t tell me I can’t do something, because then I'll HAVE to do it!

Comments (44)

  • Hi Jason & Nikki,
    not sure if I missed this video a year ago, you are such pro’s , making passage like it’s nothing. You must have so much experience now a year later ( 1/2018). I know your off to the pacific islands and I’m sure they are amazing …… but it seem you have passed so much by in the Caribbean. Hopefully you will come back when your ready for some easy less stressful sailing!
    Thanks for posting a great “at sea” video, my favorite. Cheers Warren

  • Jeremy

    Hi Guys, I finally felt like I ought to make a few comments about the fishing that ‘might’ help. I’m not a pro fisherman, but do some fishing off my sailboat, too.

    The comment above about the treble hooks where legal is quite right, but a few other pointers… You might consider turning your reel around on the rod. Maybe because I am using a lighter rod, but my sense is that if you have your eyelets downward, you get better flex in the rod, which helps keep flexible tension on the line as you ‘keep your tip up’… Someone more pro, feel free to correct me if I am wrong about more serious offshore rods.
    Another suggestion is to put a bungee on your rod so that it doesn’t get pulled out of the holder in the otherwise potentially expensive event of a really big strike.
    I’d also really suggest taking the rod out of the holder, and also slowing the boat down. I think with the clip that you guys are generally moving at, that single hook is often just pulling through the fish’s mouth when it’s too big a fish for your line to bring it to the surface and start planing on top.
    A quick way to slow the boat down under sail is to head up, partially furl the headsail and ease the main a bit or even better, just ease the traveler to spill some wind.

    Another one is, I see that sometimes you travel across steep drop-offs on your approaches to islands. Those are really worth going back to on a calm day and running a motor to troll quite deep along the length of the drop-off, as some of the best fishing is along these underwater ridge lines, as you get delicious lurkers hanging out at depth along the ledges. Lastly, as you guys veggie-pescotarians, have you thought of grabbing a couple of fishing spears for when you are snorkeling. Then you can choose your meal based on species, size, etc. I know it’s a bit averse to the vibe of snorkeling in some ways, they’re pretty reliable for putting food on the table, and ultimately, it’s not ethically any different from harvesting lobster. Just a few thoughts… Happy sailing!


  • Bradley

    Agree no need to set the hook, but if a big hit/run/jump you could head up and luff while you fight/land the fish. Blue skies!

  • First of all, let me say that you guys are awesome! We purchased our catamaran- “Summer Kai” last summer and we’re headed out this summer with our kids for a family sailing adventure. Your videos inspire us to go for it and are super high quality! One question I have what do you use to show everyone your course on your website (your I’m looking to do the same sort of thing so our friends and family can check us out. Oh, and as an aside, I think we were at Harbour Island when you were in the Berry’s. I hope that we get to meet you sometime. Fair winds and keep ’em coming! Christian. s/v Summer Kai

  • Fermin

    You were probably hooking dolphin (Mahi Mahi) but they have weak mouths and will pull the hook when reeling up going so fast. Can you slow the boat to a couple of knots when you get those big hits and see if that works? BTW, I wouldn’t worry about setting the hook when you are going so fast. Good luck!!

  • Chris

    Re: fishing

    You may want to consider taking the rod out of the holder and setting the hook with a strong pull to your body. Keep that tip up! Drop for slack then back up while reeling. Repeat. A bit too much slack says guy sitting on couch in Texas 🙂 Good luck!

  • William

    Nikki you’re not setting the hook that’s why you loose the fish.

  • Nadya Miller

    Hi guys! I’ve been following you for a long time and finally made the jump to becoming a patreon. I always look forward to your videos and find that both of you ooze motivation to follow our dreams and explore. I’m a travel nurse and love hoping around from state to state but that obviously requires a lot of driving. My latest haul was San Diego to Philly. I keep myself occupied in the car with audiobooks and podcasts. What are some of your favorites? Also, do you by chance need an ER nurse on your boat full time?! Happy sailing!

  • Roger

    I think this has been mentioned by previous commentators. Single hooks are for sport fishing only, if you are fishing to eat then large double or treble hooks are the de-facto requirement. Your ratio of ‘fish on boat’ to ‘fish on’ will take a quantum jump up. Both sharp galvanized steel or stainless steel hooks work. Swivels are critically important also to prevent twists that weaken the line. If you want more info drop me a line (no pun intended)

  • Chris

    Thinking of selling my house and being in Melbourne buying a boat in Qld as the boating stock is a lot more varied than Melbourne. I used to own a 15′ racing cat but would need a cruiser. Of course we have the Great barrier Reef and the Whitsundays to play with without crossing an ocean. Pacific on the east coast and Atlantic in the west, just a short 5000Km drive away.

  • Brian

    Another great video, As always, loved it, I couldn’t believe how easy Nikki made it look fixing lunch in those seas. Looks like the cats handled the seas well too. Keep the videos coming, love them. Thanks for sharing.

  • Venice Scherer

    That was an amazing adventure ~ you always surprise with great entertainment! Thank you so so much!!!

  • cynthia

    I’m agreeing with the life vest

  • Patricia Wolter

    What do you do for excersize?

  • Nikki

    For all you fishing pros: Yes, we slow the boat down when a fish is on. We’ve tried heaving to in the past but the fish almost always gets off. We do try setting the hook but may not be good at it yet. Remember, we’re new to all this but we are getting better and catching more fish!

    • Pete Naylor

      Lovin’ your adventure……. thanks for sharing
      Regarding fishing here’s some friendly advice
      1. Do not slow the boat down.
      2. Your reel drag is set to light. It should be 25% of the line strength ie 12lb drag for 50lb line. The bigger fish are biting the lure, pulling drag and then tasting plastic and letting go. A tighter drag will set the hook and pull the fish along skipping on the surface. Like what happened with the smaller (and sleeker) tuna and spanish mac. A 12-16″ wire trace between the hook and the leader will counter the toothy critters efforts.
      3. Your rod holder is not designed for trolling. It does not have a cross pin at the bottom of the tube which mates with the slot on the bottom of your rod. If you can modify it with 2 holes and a screw and nut it will help you reel in.
      4. Trolling is a very exciting way to fish. You will catch a completely different type of species as opposed to bottom fishing.
      All the best!

  • Mike

    Fantastic video and too bad about losing those fish. As somebody else posted, maybe try a good treble hook and see if that helps getting them in the boat. And I know that other people have already mentioned this. Wear your PFD when out of the cockpit. Especially in rough seas. Practise a man overboard drill with your life preserver and the other person isn’t allowed to help with anything. That way your skills stay sharp and so do you.
    Stay safe you two and keep having fun.

  • BOB

    I think if you check with the locals, you’ll find that Barracuda STEAKED are really good eating,

  • Sue

    How do you power your electric skillet when under way? I looked it up on Amazon and it doesn’t look like it’s 12V. Assuming since you are under way you aren’t running your generator. Just curious.

    • Curious Minion

      The inverter provides power from the lithium batteries to the outlets.

  • Nice catches! And those tacos looked delicious! Funny, I grew up with a family of fisher-people, and I hated fishing, and didn’t really like eating fish, either. But now that Dear Husband Tony and I fish here in Colorado, I am loving the trout and bass that we catch. Hoping for walleye this year (more elusive in these parts). Keep staying safe and living your dream!

  • Peter Van de Velde

    Hi, I have just read the comments and agree that if you are moving around the boat outside of the cockpit put a lifejacket on, I wear a “horseshoe” style jacket with auto inflate. it is massively difficult to retrieve someone out of the water if you are a crew, if you are one person you will have to stop the boat, drop sails turn the boat around and keep an eye on where the overboard person is. this is a massively difficult task in choppy seas (try it one day with a life ring), you can be in a false sense of security in the sheltered cockpit it is a different story out on deck!
    I think for landing the fish you need to almost stop so perhaps heave to, glad you both don’t get seasick, I am sure the more open sea sailing you do the happier you will feel on board.

  • John Schretlen

    Great to see you sailing in some stronger winds and seas. Kinda fun isn’t it?

    One friendly comment: I see Jason wearing a PFD at 4:37 but not at 6:40 when reaching for the half-fish Sea-tax. Jason, when you were reaching for the fish line it would have been a lousy time to be hit with a swell starboard broadside. Just saying.

    Please, think safety.

  • Scott and Bre

    Stop creating, editing and publishing these videos, Jason and Nikki!!!

    After moving to Bend, Oregon last year ….. I thought I was finished moving.

    But after seeing your videos, I just want to go back to life-on-the-boat in the Exumas or any part of the Bahamas.

    Water looks lovely, and your energy and enthusiasm are contagious!

    Cheers to your conquering the fishing opportunities in front of you …. and I’m sure you’ll be doing “how-to” videos on that topic soon. Boat looks great ….. and Bre and I are happy for both of you. “New adventures daily” as a tag-line, would be an understatement eh?

    Scott and Bre

  • I agree with the other posts. Fish will be much easier to land if you let yourselves anchor for a little bit or take the sails down and troll. The force of your speed is pulling the hooks right out of their mouths. Do most of your fishing while you’re in calm waters and going nowhere.

  • Tracy H

    Crazy awesome. What an adventure. Nikki, your cooking/meals look so yummy. I see a cookbook in your future for traveling couples. I’d buy it. Be safe and have fun.

  • George Hofmann

    Another thoroughly exciting vlog. I have too many good adjectives….
    Here’s a silly question….not that I want you to change anything and I’m wondering if the comment about “fair seas and following winds” shouldn’t actually be fare winds because people were earning a living back in the days of yore.
    Health and wealth to you and your adventures.

  • theresa kovacs

    I love watching your videos! I can’t get enough of them! I share them to my daughters sometimes. only thing wrong with your videos, is I wish there were more of them! lololol.

  • Brian

    Hi Gang! Really enjoying your videos. We’ve been following you for quite some time now. Through your RV adventures and now onto sailing. We are living a similar lifestyle having spent some time in an RV and now on the water in a 34 ft trawler. Since you must be concerned with safety, we’re wondering what type of PFD’s you’re wearing as they seem invisible in the videos. A person would get very small very quickly at 7 knots. And trying to find them in 6 ft waves would be extremely difficult.
    Keep up the great work and try to stay safe!

  • Deborah Kerr

    Quite the adventure-those high wavy seas make one appreciate those calm harbors/bays!! But it was fun, wasn’t it!!! Love the loud splash of the waves and the rocky boat, and you need to carry on with regular daily life, like lunch….which looked delicious! Once again, beautiful sunsets, each so original, like a snowflake!! Looking forward to the next adventure 🙂

  • Kent Olson

    My son Lukas (9yrs) and I ( his father Kent) really enjoy following your adventure! We started watching a couple years ago when we lived in Singapore. Singapore is very small and we loved watching your RV adventures. We moved to Dallas 18 months ago and were thrilled to see you transition to sailing as it a love of ours but yet to take our sailing classes.
    Keep up the adventure as we love learning from you. One day when my son is older we will also start to adventure the high seas!

  • Heather

    Hi Nikki.

    Another great video !

    I really like the hoodies you’re wearing in this video (both the coral and the navy). Can you share the manufacturer?

    Wishing you continued smooth sailing,

  • Lisa Bee

    Jason made tortillas from scratch? Can you share the recipe?

  • Ken Canada

    Sailing SV Delos ep 2
    Thought you would enjoy this round the world blog
    Ken Canada

  • Stephen Krage

    First, I love your videos. I think some of your fish loses can be from sharks or pulling hooks. I have used single hooks on lures, but I prefer double or treble hooks. Especially since you don’t stop to reel in your fish. For single hooks, consider circle hooks, they hold better. They are great for bait fishing. When you catch lesser quality fish like Bonita, Barracuda, Skipjack and Mackerel consider bleeding then asap and cooling then down. This will make them taste a lot better. I’m glad you got a good trolling outfit. Most of my fishing has been in the ocean off So Cal. but we are planning to move to Melbourne, Fl. with our MH and boat. I will then be more a tune to your type of fishing. If you see an old guy in a 18′ CC, it might be me. You guys are definitely living the dream.

  • Nancy Fernandez

    Awesome ride you both handled it well. Damn fish won’t stay on the hook. Loving the videos! Stay safe until the next time. 🙂

  • Laura

    I really loved this video (love them all but this one was a favorite) as it shows life on the water, and how you deal with the waves. How do the cats do with all of the “beats”?

    Thanks for making me dream big. Our full time RV adventure started this MAY!!!!! Yay.

    • Curious Minion

      Cats are just fine. Check out 12:15 in the video.

  • John Watford

    Yet again, another fantastic video! Great sailing and even better conclusion with the awesome Bluewater! Can’t wait to get there one day!

  • Gary Pinkley

    Another great video you two. May wife and I have been following you from the beginning. Your adventures really drive us to get out and make our own adventures. We live full time in an rv and plan on starting our big adventures in October. We love seeing you guys out there taking on each new day. This video does catch some of the size in the waves. I’m a whitewater kayaker and no matter how many times I try to describe the size of a wave in a video to another person, it never lives up to reality. You guys rock, say hi to the cats, stay safe, and have fun.

  • Heather Stewart

    Bouncy, bouncy…bam! ⛵️ I’m not an experienced deep sea fisherwoman, so some ignorance in my question. You guys are doing a healthy boat speed, so when you’re trying to reel in…and yes, they’re fish, after all…my ignorance asks, does the boat speed increase the tug pressure in a positive or negative way to haul in the fish…the ones that are obviously bait for something bigger?! Water looks stunning, looking forward to seeing what came next. Here’s to some fairer winds & smooth sailing!

  • Gary

    Great interesting videos! When fishing-if sailing – turn in to wind to fight it. You are probably just pulling the hook out of the fishes mouth. We found you researching motorhomes and also love sailing and flying! Keep up the videos. You are one of the sailing videographers we follow. (We are based in FL)


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