24 Nov 07- 1630- Arrived back at the dock. Greeted by many of our friends. Mission complete, had a great time. Next mission is Bahamas in the Spring.
23 Nov 07 - 1530 - Arrived at St Andrews Yacht Club and tied up to the outside wall. We will have power for the heater tonight. We sailed all the way once leaving the St Joe bay. Close Hulled, and gusty but we each got some helm time since George (the autopilot) was too slow for the gust and being that close hulled.
23 Nov 07 - Woke up to 41 deg morning. Went to a little cafe for breakfast. We are killing time for the sun to get a little higher and hopefully the winds to clock more to the east instead of NNW. We must go outside up to Panama City and the winds are hollowing. So what's new, I will tell you, it is cold! Oh well it is any easy run to Panama City. We are planning to spend the night at the Yacht Club tonight.
Thanksgiving Dinner - So it takes hours to cook and 10 min to devour. The only problem was running out of pans to cook things, and then fitting it on a 3 burner stove. The weather is beautiful, you could not ask for a better day for a picnic. They say we are still going to get a front, but we will see tomorrow. Here are some pictures of dinner. The only thing to make it better would be to have some family join us.
22 Nov 07 - Thanksgiving - Arrived at Port St Joe marina. It is closed, but we had called ahead so to wait out the passing front. Oh Ya, the bay is like a lake, it is sunny and light winds. So much for the weather men. We did have a thunderstorm last night. Anyway, we decided to walk the town of Port St Joe, after about 45 min we had walked the town (mostly realtors lawyers, and insurance agencies). nothing was open except the CVS, Dolor store, and one bar. So I guess it is thanksgiving dinner on the boat. Chicken (we will think it is turkey), stove top, mashed potatoes, corn bread, and green beans. We will tell you how it came out.
21 Nov 07 - Nice day today. Drove up Carrabelle river to see Carrabelle. The a nice sail to Apalachicola. We are staying at the Water Street Motel and Marina, the price is right and it just opened in a month ago. The slips are a little small we take up two of the slips with about 14' sticking out, oh well. There is suppose to be a front coming through tonight. Tomorrow it is to St Joe through the inside.
20 Nov 07 - 1530 - Arrived at Dog Island. Had some good sailing and some motoring. We motored sailed all day today so we would arrive during light. Last night was another night of strong winds and big seas. We took soo much water over the bow that it shorted the Bow Thruster and it started running all by its self. It took a while to figure what was running due to all the wind and noise. George spend most of the later part of the trip dealing with following seas. Time for a nap, then come up with a plan. (For you who do not know where Dog Island is, it is at Carrabelle, FL)
19 Nov 07 - Departed Marina Jack's and out the pass. The pass was much better at high tide. There was a sign as we went through the pass "Local Knowledge Required", but I guess we are locals now. Anyway on a heading of 329 deg for about 190 Miles to Dog Island. Next entry will be a few days. We won't run out of pudding, still two cases left!
18 Nov 07 - Had a good sail although short up to Sarasota to Marina Jack's. This is a High Class Marina. Tomorrow we plan to do the crossing from Sarasota to Dog Island. The tide will be up in the morning, trying to get through the pass that was 5' with a 5.5 boat was a trick. At least I have the track from where I dug the channel through the pass.
17 Nov 07 - Motored up the ICW to Venice and got a slip in at the "Crows Nest". Hans, Pierre and Bob, Pat Hutchison all met in the bar. Just a quite night here. Shared stories, and drank some brew. The is ICW is about the same as in the panhandle. Not real exciting, but had to navigate under several bridges. I did not take my camera, so no pictures. Tomorrow a short hop to Marine Jacks. Let you know more then.
16 Nov 07 - Woke up to high winds and cold temps, so I made a command decision to lay over one more day here at Ft Myers Beach. Chip and I rode the trolley to Wind Dixie and West Marine. Just a short ride and only 25 cents. We talked so a couple that is in the mooring field and it is only $14. I would recommend this place ether at Moss Marine or the mooring field.
15 Nov 07 - The gulf was like a lake, so we motored, arrive here in port an Moss Marine in Ft Myers Beach by noon. It is a very nice marina, boaters lounge with 4 private shower rooms, TV, and Washers and Dryers. We did 5 loads between Chip and I (That is full size Washers). The beach and pier is 3 short blocks. Many Restaurants and shops. A casino boat loads at the end of our dock. We sat and watched it load, interesting crowd, can you say geriatrics? Tomorrow it is up the ICW, the high winds does not look like they will be here tonight. Can't say the weather people have been right the entire trip.
14 Nov 07 - 0830 - Just anchored at Marco Island. It was a long night, but did sail from sun down to 0430 when we arrived outside the entrance. We then waited for sun up. After entering Florida Bay under the bridge on US1 there were millions and millions of crab traps for miles and miles. Of course we picked one up and it dropped our speed to 3 kts. So had to get rid of it. No wind to speak of then when it got dark the winds kicked up to as high as 20 Kts apparent. Old "Trixie" just wanted to go fast. Some times in the middle 8s and normally in the high 7s. Did not want to get here that early, but we did. Tried out the autopilot in "Wind" mode, it worked great! Need to sleep, more later.
13 Nov 07 - Had a backing plate made across US 1 at a machine shop to fix the cleat for the reefing line and fix that. Now it is time to clean up the boat a depart for Marco Island. Should be sometime tomorrow that we arrive. Winds look good just a little strong today, but what's new! The darn crab pots will be the biggest threat. It is an overnight sail so it may be a day or two until you read some more.
12 Nov 07 - Here we are in Marathon Key. Sailed for a few hours but then the winds piped up to 27 kts and it pull the furling cleat out of the boat so rolled up the sails and motored directly into the wind for the next 6 hours. We decided to get a slip in the Marathon Marina and it sucks! The TV Cable is broken, the restaurant is closed, the showers that have hot water you must walk down the dock, and across the boat yard (so we used the boats shower). Put in 28 Gal of fuel, that was for the trip from Clearwater to the dry Tortugas to Key West and to Marathon, 9 days, to include the use of the generator. But needed 125 Gals of water. Tomorrow we leave for Marco Island at about 11:00 to sail all night and arrive the next morning. Maybe I will write in the AM.
11 Nov 07 - A lazy day on the boat watching the mass of boats attempt to anchor to see the race. The Race is interesting, but don't think I would travel to see it. This little live aboard anchorage really comes alive for the race. One of the pictures is of the guy that lives on the 22' just off our nose. You would think you are in the 60s with a bunch of hippies out here. After the race we loaded the dingy so we can take off tomorrow for Marathon Key for water and fuel. We need about 10 Gals of fuel and 125 Gal of water. We are down to our last 50 gals of water. We were domestic last night and both did a load of laundry and then dried it this morning when the generator was started for coffee and charging the batteries. Chip is over on Lioness to help get there starboard engine started.
10 Nov 07 - Off to Key West in the dingy. It is the same cruise ship town I was in two years ago spring break. We dropped Denis off to catch a plane back to the greater Atlanta. He will have to just read this log and dream his live instead of living his dreams for a while. So we are back on the boat away from all the tea shirt shops and bars. Took some pictures from the shore at the boat so you could see where we are anchored. Now for a peaceful sunset.
9 Nov 07 - No sleep last night. Too worried about how close we are anchored and the wind from the north and current from the south. So spent the sleepy day watching the Races. We were right up front on one of the turns. I am not sure what was more entertaining the race or watching people attempt to anchor. Tonight should be more fun since some of the boats are even closer. As far as the race "Budweiser" has no competition.
8 Nov 07 - No trip to Key West is complete without going to Mallory Square to see the sun set. We get to see Mallory Square and the sun set. The current switched and wind is still out of the North so we are so tight we can't sing freely, so we will have to take turns on Anchor watch tonight. We tried to set a stern anchor but it dragged. Tomorrow it over to town.
8 Nov 07 - Just a short way to Key West. We arrived before Noon. No place in any of the marinas because it is Power Boat Race Week. We are currently anchored across the channel off a small island with a bunch of derelict boats and Hippie live aboard. Our friends on Lioness have taken there dingy in to see if this is ok place to stay. We are staying behind to watch the boats. Chip is busy planning the next legs, you know he never sits back and relaxes.
7 Nov 07 - 0730 - Departed Ft Jefferson for Boca Grande. It is the prefect day for a sail. All the boats left within a hour. We passed Lioness, pretty bad when a monohull beats a cat on a beam reach! Arrived at Boca Grande but not much to hide from the North Wind so we went a mile further to "Woman Key" and anchored. We are about 25 miles from Key West. By chance I tried the cell phone and it works interminably. I even got Internet, it was going to take 2 hours to send one picture, so we will be in Key West by the time you see this. After we passed Lioness they picked up one of the ten zillion cab traps and had to cut it louse. I think it was an excuse to justify for use passing them up so soon. The cold front has just got here, it might get down to 70 tonight. Sounds like it is a lot colder at home. Tomarow on to Key West for a few days. Living your dreams is so much better than dreaming our life.
6 Nov 07 - The crew from "Lioness" 2 Germans and a Frenchmen from Punta Gordo came by last night, a bottle of wine and some good conversation. Today was a lazy day. Stayed on the boat and looked at the 5' Grouper that congregate in the shade of the boat. The Lioness crew tried to catch one and ended up with a 6' nerf shark. The entertainment is two sea planes that come twice a day and two fast cats that come at 10:30 and leave about 2:30. Had a great dinner of Omaha Stakes, mash potatoes gravy, green beans, and of course pudding for desert. Tomorrow we move on closer to Key West. We are not dreaming our life, but living our dreams.
5 Nov 07 - Morning - All the boats left with the exception of the one catamaran and us. Lowered Chip's dingy and put the motor on it. The motor would not run. (Would you think it would have something to do with the smell of varnish when we put Chip's motor on the rail?) Chip removed the carburetor and empted the varnish and water out of the float bowl. Then it ran like a champ. Off to Ft Jefferson to look around. One thing about this place is there is always something to see; sea planes taking off, fast catamarans arriving, and sail boats anchoring.
4 Nov 07 - 1800 - Arrival at Ft. Jefferson, Dry Tortugas (Speed average 6.5 not using the iron sails except for leaving the marina and anchoring). Good to see land, (Just a postage stamp). The fort looks like it rises out of the water. Extremely small anchorage for 7 boat to include two crab boats. Not much to hide behind, the winds blew most of the night and strong, but what new!
4 Nov 07 - Along the way. It looks about the same but lighter winds, 20 Kts. Mostly direct down wind.
3 Nov 07 - 11:45 - Off the coast, only 30 hrs to go. Dead down wind doing 6 kts. About out of range of the cell phone. More in a week.
3 Nov 07 - We will be leaving for the Dry Tortugas at about 10:30. No contact for the next week. Next time you hear it will be Key West.
2 Nov 07 - Catalina came and fixed the window leak. Yea! They also brought the clevis pin, but it was the wrong size, so we went to the factory and picked up the correct one. Oh, I forgot to tell you about on the trip over in the middle of the night, 30+ kst wind, waves to match the clevis pin came out of one of the shrouds and started beating the boat to death. Had to crawl out and temp fix it with a shackle, it took twice to get a size that would work. Ask Chip to tell the story as I woke he up because it was my shift. As for today we went to the Boat Show, spent money, at least gave our plastic cards to people a lot. Dinner at "The Original Hooters". Tomorrow fix the shroud, and then off to the Dry Tortugas. At the boat show I found Larry's dream boat. See picture below:
1 Nov 07 - 1800 - Picked up Dennis at the airport. It is still blowing out there! Like it will never give up. It is nice in the marina, we are thinking of taking the boat next to us for the rest of the trip.
1 Nov 07 - 0830 - Arrived at Clearwater Marina. What a 2 days! The winds were 25 - 35 for the entire time in the Gulf. It is a chore to try to stand, walk, or any thing other than sit. I will send more when I get a chance.
30 Oct 07 - 1730 - Out Panama City Pass. We decided to go so we will be out of touch for 2 days. If you do hear from us we decided to abort. Nice sunset though. Next entry will be from Clearwater Beach.
30 Oct 07 - 0810 - We have departed. Had to motor across the bay and we are now in the ditch on the way to PAM. Looks like we will spend the night in Panama City tonight.
29 Oct 07 - Chip is back in the water and sailing back to the Dock. Scheduled to depart tomorrow morning by 0800. Not sure about after Panama City, forecast 25 - 30 with 10' seas.