Silver Maple Blog

Retirement adventures Canadian style

Lyon family visit the Bahamas and moving Silver Maple north


Tuesday, February 13th to Wednesday, March 7th, 2018

A warning in advance, it has been a long time since we last posted so this will be a long one. Time is passing so quickly it has been challenging to keep up with it all. We had a great visit with the Lyon family in February for four days — Stacia, Paul and the two 10-year olds, Celia and Andrew. It is the most people we have ever had on Silver Maple, but it was a blast. So glad Stacia and Paul made the trip down to the Bahamas with the family.

When they arrive we pick them up in Marsh Harbour and head to Fishers Bay, Great Guana Cay, to anchor out. We have lunch at Grabbers Restaurant and then hit the beach for some time playing in the waves. The Lyons seem to have no trouble jumping right in to the slower pace of life in the Bahamas. Well done!


The Lyon family having just arrived, we hit the water to make it out of the harbour on the high tide and head to Great Guana Cay, Abacos, The Bahamas. Andrew is at the helm!


Captain Randy with his new crew on deck


Getting into the island pace of life at Grabbers on Great Guana Cay


Celia and Andrew with their coconut collection on Great Guana Cay

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Celia ready for the waves on Nippers Beach, Great Guana Cay


Andrew survives a wave hit

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Stacia looking lovely walking the beach in front of Nippers

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Fun in the water with Dad

The next morning we head to Lubbers Quarters for some snorkeling on an old sunken barge and then off to Tahiti Beach to anchor for the night. The following day, we make our way to Hope Town and stay a few days at the Hope Town Inn and Marina. While there, we climb the lighthouse, spend time on the beach and go to the Hope Town Song Writers Music Festival at the Abaco Inn. What a fun time!


Sunrise over Great Guana Cay


Celia at the helm as we sail towards Lubbers Quarters


The men on deck


Celia and Andrew getting salty


A dolphin swims along side of us on the way to Lubbers Quarters


The ladies with the conch shell


Celia blowing the conch horn at sunset at Tahiti Beach to ensure the sun will rise the next morning


Celia and Andrew on the deck having a good time


New sailors!

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Stacia and Lee chillin’ at the pool at the Hope Town Inn


Andrew watching the Manatee at the dock at the Hope Town Marina


The Lyon family in front of the Hope Town lighthouse, the last remaining kerosene burning lighthouse in the world


Beautiful Hope Town Harbour from the lighthouse


At the top!


Picnic on the beach on Elbow Cay


Listening to the performance at the Songwriters Festival

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The whole group at the Hope Town Song Writers Festival


Enjoying the waves on the beach on Elbow Cay near the Abaco Inn after the Song Writers Festival


Nothing better than family beach time!


Some nice folks give us a ride back the two miles into town from the Song Writers Festival in the back of their truck


The whole crew on the marina shuttle back to Silver Maple after the festival

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Celia and Andrew with their favourite shuttle driver, Casey


Lee and Stacia enjoying yummy Caribbean Margaritas on Silver Maple


Lady of leisure with her morning Jo


Loading on the marina shuttle to catch the ferry to their flight home. Boo!



After Stacia, Paul, Celia and Andrew leave, we take a day to prepare and then push off the dock and start our trek back north. The weather is in our favour so we make tracks for West End in the Bahamas, with stops in Allans-Pensacola and Great Sale Cay. West End will be our starting point for the crossing to Ft. Pierce, FL. The night before we leave for Florida, we have a nice visit with Debbie Meeker who lives in Freeport. Originally from Mississauga, she and her family have been family friends of the Potters for years. In fact, Debbie used to baby sit the Potter kids. Lee often refers to Debbie and her sisters, Kim and Shannon, as ‘cousins’.¬† So great to see her!


The beginning of our trip north leaving Great Guana Cay and heading towards the Whale Cay ocean passage. Hoping the rainbow is a good sign…


On our way north!


We will miss the beautiful blue waters of the Bahamas


Captain on deck


Great day for sailing!

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Gorgeous! The Abacos Islands are giving us a beautiful send off.


On the move…


Preparing to drop anchor at Allans-Pensacola Cay


Sunrise over Allans-Pensacola


Heading towards Great Sale Cay


Arriving at Great Sale Cay to anchor for the night


Sunset over Great Sale Cay


Early morning on the way towards West End, Bahamas

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A Dolphin comes to visit


Amazing blue water as we arrive at West End, Bahamas near Freeport

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Lee with long time family friend, Debbie Meeker

The next morning on February 26th, we cross the Gulf Stream over to the US. It takes us 12 hours to make the crossing to Ft. Pierce, FL. It is a long day!


Early morning start to cross the Gulf Stream to the US. Hey, it’s dark!


Sunrise over West End as we head out

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We are not alone out here in the dark — lots of cruise ships and freighters!

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Good morning from the Gulf Stream

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Full sails and good wind


Our tradition of a photo marking half-way across the Gulf Stream to the US


Thank you Gulf Stream for the lift. We are moving at 9.4 knots! Woohoo!

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Tough to see, but this is our first view of land on the US side. Almost there!


Dolphins come to escort us in to Ft. Pierce, FL after a long 12 hour trip across from the Bahamas

Since arriving in the US, we have been making our way up the coast the via the Inter-coastal Waterway (ICW). We had hoped to go on the outside to the ocean for some of the trip, but so far the weather has been too unsettled, cold and windy to do that.

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Sunrise at the Ft. Pierce marina in Florida


Our first draw bridge on the Inter-Coastal Waterway (ICW) in Florida


Approaching our first fixed bridge in Florida. Will we fit?

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Close one! Yikes!

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Osprey in the nest along the Inter-Coastal Waterway (ICW) in Florida


No more blue water. Boo!!

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Approaching the lovely Cocoa Village Marina

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We watch the launch of the Goes 2 NOAA Satillite from Cape Canaveral while we are staying at Cocoa Beach. Very cool!

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Dinner at our favourite Thai/Sushi place, the Thai Thai Sushi Bar in Cocoa Beach. We ate there six years ago on our trip south with Silver Maple from Toronto.

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The NASA building at Cape Canaveral as we pass along the Inter-Coastal Waterway (ICW)

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Osprey patroling the Manatee slow speed zone

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Some Florida life on the water

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Lots of hurricane damage as we head north along the Florida coast

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We love the pelicans!

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The quaint New Smyrna City Marina in Florida

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Lots of wind so sails are up on the ICW

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Captain at the helm

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Silver Maple at the New Smyrna City Marina in Florida

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Eagle! Lots of wild life along the way.

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Weather has turned cold and windy! Ugh!

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The ICW (Inter-Coastal Waterway) in Florida

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The European Village at Palm Coast in Florida

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Approaching St. Augustine, Florida

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Walking the historic streets of St. Augustine, Florida

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Lee in front of the oldest wooden school house in the US located in St. Augustine, Florida

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Silver Maple at the dock in St. Augustine, FL

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More hurricane damage as we arrive in Fernandina Beach, Florida

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Shrimp boat in Georgia just shortly after crossing the border from Florida

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Approaching the Jekyll Island Marina in Georgia

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Silver Maple safe and sound on the dock

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Randy over looking the marina on Jekyll Island

Yesterday we crossed the Florida – Georgia border and we are now at the Jekyll Island Marina in Georgia. Taking a day off from travel today to do some bicycling around the island. Should be fun. Tomorrow we are on the water again. Goal is to be in Annapolis, MD by mid-April. Still a long way to go.

Wishing everyone fair winds!



3 thoughts on “Lyon family visit the Bahamas and moving Silver Maple north

  1. Wow – wow – wow. Absolutely wonderful! Thank you!

  2. Beautiful pictures! Enjoy your trip up the coast!

  3. Lee,
    So great to share your adventures through your words and pictures! The Bahamas looked wonderful, I hope the US weather gets better soon, winter seems to be hanging on longer than we would like. Wishing you smooth sailing on your way north!
    All the best,

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