top of page


As we venture off to the Cay Sal Bank, we started off with some rough water and high winds. Dramamine is high in demand. As we made our way to Cat Cay to check in, the weather became much more favorable and we are all full of happy hearts to be back in the Bahamas. As we wait for customs to check us in, we topped off the boat with fuel in preparation for our southerly journey. Some evening fly fishing for Bones are on the agenda and off to fill our bellies of yummy island grub...which at Cat Cay, believe it or the ribs!!! I didn't believe it until the boys shares this secret.

As first light began to show, we slowly wakened to go under way. Some bad weather was still lingering around with the slow moving front trying to push its way through. We saw more water spouts that morning than I have ever seen in my life. Luckily, they were from a distance. Seas were good, better than the journey over and we were all excited to be heading our way down to Cay Sal Bank. Of course we were trolling for some lingering Wahoo, but with no luck catching any. As we approached the bank, we did a few deep drops along the shelf. Nothing major, just checking it out. Moving south towards Elbow Cay, it began to dawn on me how remote we actually were. Before it got too late, we headed to the leeward side of Elbow Cay and find our spot for the evening. Since we had a few more hours of daylight, we decided to go check out a few spots closer to land to check out how big these lobsters really are over here. Well, it's still fairly deep right up to the rocks and as everyone says...shark infested!! And the lobster were big. Still, a fun evening adventure. Little did we know, this was just the beginning.

As dusk approached, our friends and traveling companion vessel were returning from some evening Yellowtailing...which by the way...we should have done because they loaded up with giant Yellowtails. As they were just setting the anchor, we see a small primitive raft, and I mean PRIMITIVE, loaded with twelve Cuban refugees waiving a small red flag approaching their boat. As we see the raft approaching their bow of the boat, a quick hail over the radio giving a heads up on the upcoming visitors. This situation got very real when both firearms on board were pulled out an loaded. I read about this stuff happening but NEVER thought we would actually happen. Luckily, they were only looking for food and water out of desperation...but you never know what tired and hungry people would do out of desperation. I had read online that the U.S. Coast Guard closely monitors the Cay Sal Bank and can be easily reached on Channel 16 and if you aid and assist any refugees out on the Bank, you need to report it immediately...well that's what I did. Sure enough, the Coast Guard answered and responded ASAP. I was seriously impressed. We gave them our coordinates and were unsure what they would actually do. Well, needless to say, we did not sleep that night.

As civil daylight was approaching, I could see a line of people hiking up on land. It was the Cubans hiking, they spent the night somewhere tucked in the little land that is there. I could not believe it, but with the wind shifting and now out of the north, there is no way they could make it in the raft they had. Sure enough, the U.S Coast Guard showed up a few hours later with their C-130 circling in the air and Cutter moving over and tender ready to go. I'm not sure about what happened to these twelve people after the Coast Guard approached them. I also have mixed emotions about this whole situation. That I could have very well sent these people back to the doom hell hole they wanted to escape from or I saved their life due to the rough seas, northern wind and minimal food and water.

As we watched the whole thing go down, we of course continued our fishing. Picking a few spots to deep drop, really searching for Mystics. Nothing outstanding, but some nice grouper, snapper, big jacks that liked to fight...and more sharks. Both boats lost an anchor, so travelers, bring your spare and choose wisely where you anchor over here. A series of mishaps leads me to think this place is most definitely haunted, since EVERYONE I have talked to that comes here to fish has some sort of weird unexplainable drama. Until next time Cay Sal...

bottom of page