Cockburn Harbour, South Caicos

27th April to 1st May and 5th to 6th May 2021

We enjoyed Cockburn harbour. It was a little windy when we entered, and tough to find a spot that wasn’t deeply grassy. We prefer to anchor in sand so we can see the anchor is set, especially as the forecast was relatively heavy, so took two attempts to get settled.

Once the anchor was set, we found ourselves in shallow (<2m at low tide), beautiful clear water. Which was fortunate, as within half an hour we had a school of Eagle Rays circling the boat, and Arthur was diving for conch in imitation of them.

We didn’t keep notes here and I’m writing this at the end of June, but a few things Arthur or I recall:

There was an excellent playground in the town. It included a large, covered area, with climbing frame and other things that the kids enjoyed playing on. Also freely available was a basketball court, and astroturf with five-a-side pitches, as well as balls to use. A really great find.

Shopping was not great. There was food available, but it was difficult to find among the different shops, even more expensive than Grand Turk, and not as well stocked as most other places we visited. Which contrasts with the notes on our chartbook.

The kids and Charlotte made a trip to the “bubbling hole”. It’s an outlet for seawater, driven the waves, and evidently it wasn’t wavy enough that day as the kids were unimpressed. But, on the way back to the boat they met a local called Natural who created art with conch shells, and built things in his garden with other people’s junk, like a windmill. And had vegetables growing in his garden. And a “pet” osprey who he had rescued from its nest as a baby shortly before a hurricane, ands which still lived with him. And pigs and chickens he let the boys feed. They returned with many stories and a couple of pretty engraved and sculpted conch shells. Cool guy.

We had some success fishing. Particularly when Charlotte saw a feeding frenzy (predator fish from below, birds from above, prey in the middle) not far from the boat. We jumped in the dinghy and trolled through it – most exciting for the little guys (and their parents).

We had a long dinghy outing along the mangrove forest to look for creatures – it is VERY shallow, so we set off a couple of hours before high tide and I rowed a good portion of it as our outboard has a fairly long shaft. Quite a few interesting creatures, some secluded tiny bays that were fish nurseries, and other fun things were found.

Our second visit was just to discard some trash (oh dear, I’m turning American. Sorry.), and shop a little before sailing and staying somewhere we wouldn’t have access to shops for a while.

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