Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Hog Sty Reef

Talk about the middle of nowhere. Hog Sty Reef is a barely submerged reef between Acklins Island and Great Inagua. The reef itself surrounds an oval-shaped lagoon about five miles east to west and less than three mile north to south. Water depths average six meters inside, and more than 1,000 meters just offshore. This picture shows the spit of land at the opening to the reef, on the western end. It does have a working light, which is good, so you could avoid it at night. That’s it for land, except for an even smaller bit of sand on the southern side of the reef. The first signs that you’re approaching Hog Sty Reef are the huge shipwreck on the northern reef, then the smaller wreck on the southern reef. We came here during a couple of days of relatively calm weather, and met up with Side By Side, a catamaran with a family of four who have been cruising for four winters, and are in their last four months before moving back to New York so the kids can go to school. We snorkeled the wrecks with them, then we all enjoyed sundown and a few lobsters for dinner. They had just caught a five-foot mahi, which they kindly shared with us, and they gave us tips on places to go in the Ragged Islands. Great people! There are numerous reefs scattered throughout the lagoon; we snorkeled several of them, and would have kept at it if we didn’t need to get moving due to weather. This would NOT be a good place to weather out a storm (Remember the wrecks?). If you can get here, it’s a terrific place to spend a few days, especially if you like quiet isolation, which is right up our alley.

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