Great Stirrup Cay is the northernmost island of the Berry Island chain and is located just north of Great Harbour Cay off the Providence Channel. The primary boating draw of Great Stirrup Cay are the several anchorages that are scattered around the islands perimeter that offer decent protection from most directions.
The inlet above is the break between Great Stirrup Cay to the northwest (left) and Great Harbour Cay to the right (southeast). The lighter area in the image is an anchorage, which although fairly unprotected and prone to strong currents, is a good daytime place to set the hook.
The primary anchorage off Great Stirrup Cay is located on its eastern end, just off the ocean inlet between Great Stirrup and Great Harbour cays. From waypoint 25 49.016N 77 53.766W, set a course of 311 degrees true for about three-tenths of a mile until you reach the small channel that leads to the northwest behind Great Stirrup Cay. Depths here range from six to eight feet, and it is advised that you set two anchors, due to the strong currents in the area.
The second anchorage is located off the west end of the island in the gap between Great Stirrup and Little Stirrup cays. From waypoint 25 50.131N 77 55.566W, follow a course of 188 degrees true for about one mile until you reach the wider pool of eight- to ten-foot depths. Set two anchors and be aware that the area can get quite rough during a strong northerly blow.
On the extreme northern end of Great Harbour Cay are several small anchorage areas between a triangular area formed by Great Stirrup Cay, Lignumvitae Cay and Great Harbour Cay itself. One anchorage is located at the northern and of Lignumvitae Cay in six to eight feet of water. Two more can be found just east of Goat Cay a little farther north with similar depths, and even farther north behind the south shore of Great Stirrup Cay is the best protected area in this northern section with six- to nine-foot depths in a protected cove. There is an additional anchorage just north of Great Stirrup Cay, but it is is susceptible to surge from incoming waves. All of these anchorages are prone to exposure to swift currents, so a two-anchor set is recommended.
See our Local Notices to Mariners blog for updates on the latest conditions and advisories for this area.