Our last post was the written story – now here it is in video. We have heard that some like the videos – ad they are a lot of fun to make (and easy) but harder to get uploaded.
We hope you enjoy them!
First up – sunrise in Beaufort SC!
Little Cumberland is just south of Jekyll Island and just north of Cumberland Island where the old Carnegie place is.
This video was from last year just to show you what Cumberland itself looks like!
We spent New Years 2016 in Fernandina on Amelia Island so we could ww the dropping of the lighted shrimp!
Coming into Jupiter inlet just above Palm Beach is always nice as we know we are entering “south Florida’. The water is now much clearer, and we start to see the big houses and big boats. We know we are getting into warm sunny weather (we hope!)
We went outside to the ocean at Palm Beach in flat calm and 5 hours later we were getting pounded by 20 knot south winds and short stumpy seas on the bow. Ryan and Shelly rode the bow like a ride for a while!
This is the same video posted a couple days ago – but it fits here as well. Can you tell I uploaded this in HD? I only wish you could have seen the colors and felt the air, and had the feeling we had while this was being filmed!
The sun came up over Biscayne Bay about an hour later. It was so amazing and I cannot even capture it on the video. As the sun came up the outer edges of the clouds lit up like LED lights. To add some effect I sped up the video by 2 and added one of my favorite songs! You have to appreciate sunrises and CS&N to watch the whole thing!
And finally – here is Ian playing for the Marathon crowd last year!
It has been a blustery, rainy, yukky few days to start our 3rd winter in Marathon in the Fl keys…
But it is still a heck of a lot better than the 29 degrees in DC!
We are way behind in everything internet as we have pushed hard since Beaufort to get here so Ryan could have a few weeks before we turn around and head back north.
Everyone is waiting on me to go in to shore (especially Goose!) but I wanted to get something out this morning.
This video was shot about a week ago as we picked up the anchor and headed south out of Miami Beach into Biscayne Bay and on down the keys. From here we are two days from Marathon but the water is clear, the winds are balmy and all is right with the world!
I started this post Sunday morning, Memorial Day weekend (thank you and we remember!) and finally finished it May 31 so it might be a little disjointed!
It feels great to be moving, although I am always a bit nervous when we get underway after sitting for a while.Especially when I do any work on the engine. Yesterday was oil and fuel filters, and an oil change. I had noticed the alternator seemed to chewing on its belt so I decided to swap it out for the spare. Surprise! There was no spare. Gulp. If I lost the belt we are engineless as it also drives the fresh water pump.
So I loaded the bike in the dinghy, and set off for shore and the 3 mile trip to the nearest Carquest. Of course, they did not have the correct width belt so we are running an oversize belt until I find the correct one.
Another thing on my mind is that the alternator overheats. We are using an auto alternator not really made for continuous duty. I added a blower fan and ducted the air right to the alternator to see if that would help.
We are in that stage of waiting for several different payments and having to use temporary affordable fixes until things settle down. Thankful I know how!
We really enjoyed ourselves in Beaufort. There are some amazing houses here.
The concept of a paws4vets golf fundraiser at ParrIs Island Marine Base is now in the planning stages. We met some truly amazing people who have offered lots of support. Lots of help will still be needed so if you know anyone in this area, or want to help please let us know.
While we were in conversations about this, somehow we managed to also set up a Dog Scavenger Hunt for Sat morning in downtown Beaufort. The plan is to start and end the event here in the plaza of the old armory.
It will be a busy spring!
I loved this sign welcoming us to Beaufort. It is stategically placed so you see it when you launch your boat at the ramp, or you are going back to your dinghy!
The first night out we anchored in a creek about 20 miles south of Charleston. Our issue always is trying to find a place for Goose. In the Lowcountry most of the shore is deep black mud and not easily accessed by water. This time we were lucky to find one lonely spot at high tide where he could get off on a patch of sea grass that looked like it had been grazed by horses! He was happy.
Before we could leave we had to send someone to the top of the mast as the Genoa halyard (pulls up the sail) had somehow gotten jammed. Shelly and Ryan used the anchor windlass to haul me up where I found the halyard wire had wrapped around the furling foil very tightly. It was fixed and a nervous captain was lowered back to the deck. And we were underway again…
We reached Charleston at lunchtime, but with a steady breeze blowing east into the harbor and the hundreds of boats out for Memorial Day it did not look like a comfortable place to anchor. We just kept going right across Charleston Bay for five miles and back into the waterway to the north.
After waiting for the Ben Sawyer swing bridge, we found a nice, quiet deep creek three miles further and down went the hook.
First thing next morning, after I had shut down the refrigeration and put on the vacuum pump, I got out the hookah and went over the side to try and clean the growth on the bottom. Visibility was awful. I had to get about 3 inches from the hull to see anything. When you scrape the 3/4 inch layer of weed and the occasional barnacle with a plastic scraper, all the critters that make that stuff their home come swimming out and many thousands of them attach themselves to the nearest safe place. That would be me. In my nose, ears, navel … yea there too.
After half the boat was done the feeling of those little guys in my ears drove me out of the water. I looked like I was wearing a coat of little tiny sea creatures. Yuk. It is going to take some self motivation to get back in there and finish the job…
Then back out and mess with the fridge. Again.
Tuesday we made it to McClellanvile, a very old, very cool, very small town north of Charleston with a lot of history and great houses. Mayberry for sure.
The horse flies seem to out early and in numbers. Ah paradise!
The good news is that we are not hurrying, traveling half the day many days instead of sunup to sundown as in the past. And visiting more.
We passed by Georgetown SC on Winyah Bay about lunch, and headed on up the Waccamaw River towards Myrtle Beach and Wilmington. It was an amazingly beautiful day.
After an overnight stop at Bucksport Landing for cheap fuel and a lot of running for Goose on the grass, we were out again the next morning headed for Myrtle Beach, and on to Southport.
We stayed a the free dock in Southport for two nights (we really like it here) and Shelly got together with Cece from paw4people for some training at the local fire station.
Then it was out and up the Cape Fear River to Wrightsville Beach where we will sit for a few days while Shelly gets to know some of the paws4people and paws4vets clients she helps manage.
After a year and a half of always seeming to have a goal – get here, finish this, get there – we sit on a mooring in St Augustine Fl and read books, and walk the town and the dog.
Maybe visit a cell or two…
In some ways, sitting is a difficult thing to do! I even find it challenging to write a blog post!
The mooring field here in St Augustine is very busy, very crowded and fairly uncomfortable as there a many moving boats to churn the waters all day, combined with a few windy days, and fast moving large tidal currents all conspiring to rock us from morning to night.
We passed through here last week on the way to Jacksonville to pick up Ryan from his trip to Atlanta… So let me catch up on that.
When last we were together, we were in Miami Beach with Ian, and calling a cab to take him to the airport and back to Air Force Combat Control School in San Antonio. We had a great short visit with him. It is so cool to see your little boy all grown up (and paying for the drinks and dinner!)
Then there was Shelly and I all alone again, for one of the few times in the last 23 years… What in the world do we do? (Besides walk Goose twice a day!)
We were supposed to head to West Palm Beach and pick up Ryan but the word came down via text that he was extending his stay for a week and we should pick him up in Jacksonville instead. We had 10 days!
Nice! We headed north, moving very slowly, and getting used to stopping after only 20 or 30 miles a day.
From Miami we only made it to Ft Lauderdale. This is not our favorite place unless we need something fixed. They do not like sailboats here at all…
We jumped outside the next morning for the short hop up to Palm Beach and the visit with Shelly’s buddies from when we lived here in Naiad and Ian was two! While Shelly was out with Kathy, I dug out the hookah (not what you are thinking. It is a small electric air compressor, 40 foot hose and a mouthpiece for diving!) and cleaned the whole bottom of Yume from the growth that comes from sitting for two months in Marathon. The water in Palm Beach around Peanut Island is crystal clear to 25 feet and a nice strong current washes the stuff away as you clean.
West Palm to Hobe Sound was a half day sail up the waterway with a nice wind at our backs. We had not been anchored long when another Irwin 41 pulls in right next to us and anchors! Since only 45 were built ( we are hull #44) it was exciting stuff. The owners were from Jacksonville and had the bought built for then (#2) 32 years previously and had taken extremely good care of her. It’s fascinating to go aboard a boat just like yours and see the differences owning for that long can make!
The beach here was stunning and we had it much to ourselves – and took full advantage.
Hobe Sound to Vero Beach was another lovely short sail. We begin to get into a slower mode, walking for miles with Goose to see things we have sailed by before. Out to the little beach village and back to the anchorage is quite a hike, but the weather is perfect and the neighborhood is super peaceful and pretty.
The strong SW breeze continues in our favor the next day as we head towards Cape Canaveral. We don’t go there as it is out on the coast and the waterway swings inland following the Indian River. (This used to be where all the oranges came from but now it is mostly houses!)
We have to stop at 430 and wait until 530 for the bridge at Addisons Point. They hold up boat traffic for 1 1/2 hours for the Canaveral workers to get across the bridge and go home. Jerks.
As we waited we watched huge thunderstorms north of us building and building with huge bolts of lightning in the distance. That is always fun when you remember we have a 54 foot high metal pole stuck up in the air!
No worries though as we get through the bridge, hoist sail and haul butt the 5 miles to Titusvile where we grab a mooring just before the 30 knot cold rain filled wind howls down on the slower boats who came straggling in behind us. It’s nice to be one of the fastest (cruising) sailboats out there!
The next night it is Rockhouse Creek at Ponce De Leon Inlet. This is really cool place, with a very old lighthouse, (not needed any more as the inlet is all silted up) and one of the best places to run Goose ever as the big tidal range leaves a great big sandbar at low tide with really nice sand and lots of tidal pools where he can run his heart out (and no wild hogs anywhere).
There is price for everything though, and here it is noseemums at first light. The anchor was up and we were gone without even getting Goose off at first light! Man those things can bite!
In St Augustine we stayed a day or two, then moved on to
Jacksonville to figure out how to get Ryan from the airport to the boat. We also had talked Deka Battery into warrantying all the batteries bought last May and that had to be done there as well.
We ended up at the free dock just inside a Sisters Creek, renting a car for a day and getting everything done, including a much needed grocery run.
With new batteries, a restored son in the foreberth, and plenty of food, the question was what to do?
If you remember, Shannon, Ryan’s girl friend from Marathon was going to be in St Augustine for the summer starting May 1, so we decided there was time for a last week together before we headed towards DC.
But first, we turned north to visit Fernadina Beach and Cumberland Island. Both places were very cool, with many more miles walked on beautiful beaches and forests on Cumberland, and more spent peeking in and around the old town of Fernadina.
I did not know that Nathaniel Greene from Revolutionary War fame had been given land on Cumberland and had built a house there in the early 1800’s. Then the Carnegies came, bought it all up and built mansions. Too cool.
Walking around Cumberland was awesome…
Goose could care less how long ago the Indians lived here!
We visited another old fort on Amelia Island, Ft Clinch, that guarded the mouth of the St Mary’s River. Now the old fort just watches nuclear submarines go in and out from the sub base up the river.
Which brings us back South to St Augustine, reading books, and taking strolls around the old town watching tourists and glad we aren’t one. Hehe
We will hang around for two weeks, try not to go crazy, then start making our way up the coast again. Next extended stop is Beaufort SC to do our best to set up a fundraising golf tournament for spring 2016.
We are moving again. After a hectic last week of preparation, and visits, and goodbyes, we rented a car for a day to join the chaos in the big cities.
Early Friday we headed to Miami International airport to pick up Ian for a 6 day visit, then continued north to Ft Lauderdale airport to drop Ryan off to visit his buddy Sam and family in Atlanta for two weeks.
Then we turned around for the 3 hour drive back to Marathon, stopping at several places and spending all of our monthly allowance for provisions for the boat while we had a car to carry them.
Everyone only wanted a little more time together with both boys…
After a cool full blood red moon, and watching the space shuttle cross the night sky, Saturday was music and potluck at the Tiki Hut.It was a great night and very enjoyable to both listen to and play with Ian again.
Most everyone was appreciative and sorry to see us go. Sunday we hung around for the last softball game as most people have left to go north, and the Phillips are taking a third of a team!
We also made it out to Sombrero Key for some snorkeling (and a trial run for Yume). Although we rolled badly in the swell, we still had a swell time. Hehe
Monday morning we pulled out at daybreak into a choppy ocean with good strong winds. We stopped and tried spearfishing for supper but there were nothing but reef fish so we moved on to anchor at Smugglers Cove for the night on the inside of the bay to get out of the sloppy ocean.
Goose was not very happy to be back at sea. He has about 1250 miles to go.
Tuesday we made our way up the bay side to Key Biscayne Bay, and dropped an anchor at Adams Key. Shelly did some laundry for Ian, and we just hung out, played cards and took it easy. That is what you supposed to do when cruising!
Early Wednesday we pointed Yume out the really long Caeser’s Cut Channel to the ocean to see if we could dive on Pennekamp Reef but it was a bit too rough.
So we just headed towards Key Biscayne, flying along with the jib and mizzen. I cut in behind Key Biscayne channel to get into calmer water, and the bridge that leads right past downtown Miami and over to Venetian Isle.
We were there with the hook down by 130, and the crew was ready for shore leave!
Along the way, a dolphin with a missing piece of his fin joined us for about 30 minutes, just swimming at 6 knots beside the boat, and coming up for air every now and then. It drove Goose absolutely nuts! It’s times like these you really wish you could talk dolphin…
Ian had no trouble adapting to the slower cruising schedule, except when we ran out of cell tower. How is the world going to survive without Internet? Sheesh.
Yesterday was tourist day for us in South Miami Beach Beach. We walked for miles, drank in an Irish pub off the very costly main avenues, then found a cool place for dinner. Seafood of course.
I found an old friend Miss Piggy on the way home who asked for my support. Glad to help Ma’am!
Ian flies out today at lunch, and Shelly and I will make out way to West Palm Beach to pick Ryan up on the 12th. Then we will meander our way to DC to be there by September.