Saturday, March 24, 2012

Still Marching North

After dropping off Robin and Debbie, we headed towards Cumberland Island, Georgia. It is one of my favorite spots... After settling in, we had a visit from fellow cruisers we met in Marathon, Dennis and Suzi on S/V Thate Wata. They are also marching north towards home in New Bern, N.C.
We took the dinghy ashore the next morning a walked to the ocean side of the island. Everything about the island is beautiful.. The live oaks and all of the palms, the wildlife and the old ruins are awesome.. Some of the trees are probably 100s of years old. I tried to find a pine tree to collect some needles for my new hobby, but was not successful...
The next morning we pulled anchor and made a stop at Jekyll Island to top off fuel.. Well, guess who spotted some pine trees??? The dock hands thought I was nuts, but I got a bag full. One of the dock office guys came out and wanted me to go over to his home and rake his yard..Ha!!! So, off we went with fuel,food and pine needles!
Our next anchorage was a beautiful little spot just behind Doboy Island, just off the ICW..had a peaceful evening there too.
With all the porpoises in the waters, one would think they would be easy to photograph. They are so quick to pop their heads out and then dive back, you almost have to have your camera in your hand pointed at the water 24-7 and have it on rapid sequence mode to get a glimpse of them! Finally got a OK shot of one following us on our stern.. He peaked at me for a nano second and then back under he went.
Our next anchorage was a little offshoot of the ICW, Herb River, just south of Thunderbolt. Very nice,protected and quiet. The next morning we headed to Beaufort,SC and arrived around 3:30 to TP and Susan's dock. When traveling north or south we always stop here and tie off to his sailboat.. TP and Susan are wonderful friends.. After taking a quick ride to town and getting a few provisions (thanks to TP) we had a great dinner and conversation with our good friends. All is Good!!
The only negative about Beaufort is the NO-SEE-UMS... Pesky little creatures!!
After leaving Beaufort, we made it just south of Charleston in a small anchorage called Wapoo Creek. Had a little storm pass thur last nite and are calling for more today.. We hope to get across the Charleston Harbor before the next storm arrives..
On to Georgetown, SC today... More news at 11.................
P.S. Of note: South Carolina Boaters can be just as bad as South Florida boaters, just not as many of them! Ha!!!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Heading North

The old saying of "my, how the time does fly", is so true....I can't believe we are already heading north again... We left Marathon on March 1st and left lots of good memories, new friends, and fun times. The cruisers in Boot Key Harbor were friendly, helpful and knowledgeable, and fun to get together with. January and February went by so fast. I miss listening to the morning Cruiser's net, feeding my "pet" seagull, the early morning peacefulness of the harbor... Dwayne loved listening and participating in the evening net.. where, if one listened, the older and seasoned cruisers shared their knowledge and experiences, good and bad.. We did not care for Marathon at first, but it kind of grows on ya and is a great place for dealing with boat repairs, etc.
Before leaving we got together with our friends on SeaSalt,Rocking B, and The Great Escape... SeaSalt and Rocking B were making plans for their crossing to the Bahamas and Great Escape stayed in Marathon awhile longer. They plan on heading north soon to to the Great Loop.
After leaving Marathon, we made our way to Channel 5, just south of Islamorada and found a good anchorage. Had a little company for awhile... Mr. Barracuda! Huge one, 4-5 ft. long and quite fat! My toes did not go in the water! The next day we set out again on the outside route to Key Largo. Still had beam seas, but not to bad.
We had a fun time finding Dale and Sandy's dock... This was a beautiful community of homes on canals and I think we took SeaVeyor in all of them trying to find Dale and Sandy's 57 Nordhavan. These were not wide canals and we got several "looks" from the local residents when Dwayne had to turn her around! After spotting Snow White, Dale and Sandy's boat ( and of course it was in the second canal down..ha!) we were able to dock the SeaVeyor on a 300' dock ( 180' available for us to use). Our intentions were to only be there a day or so to visit with Dale and Sandy, but Mother Nature rules, and due to the high winds, we were there for a week!! We had gracious hosts and a good time.. We also caught up with cruising buddies on GodSpeed, Pat and Lorrie. They were anchored not far from us in Tarpin Basin ( inside route) These canals were also visited by sharks!! Our first nite there, after having dinner with Dale and Sandy, the boys went shark fish'n! They caught a reef shark and then another one.Of course , it was catch and release.... quickly!!Of note, Patches loved being docked there and went walkabout every chance she had. There were iguana lizards everywhere! Some probably big enough to eat her!!! The winds were crazy for several days, but finally got to head out. We made our way on the outside (beam seas again) up to Angelfish Cut. Once thru this, we were in Biscayne Bay.. and much calmer waters.
We made Miami , Pelican Harbor Marina by 5pm. Called the local pizza place and had pizza delivered to SeaVeyor... YUMMY...
The rest of the evening was spent getting ready for our guests that were flying down the next morning..
By coincidence, we met a couple back in Morehead City just prior to our leaving. We were held up an extra day due to weather. Robin and Debbie had seen the SeaVeyor at the Yacht Basin and wanted to know more about her and our cruising. We ended up having dinner with them and another couple the nite before we left Morehead. They were looking at different Catamarans for future purchase and were interested in what it took to actually "cruise".
We had hoped to meet up again with them at the Miami Boat show, but weather, schedules, just did not permit. Dwayne invited them to make a week long leg of our trip, from Florida to Georgia, to get a feel what it's like. Not a vacation, but a hands on move up the coast of Florida, averaging about 60 + miles per day... The week flew by way too fast. Robin and Debbie are naturals and were great cruisers. They participated in all aspects of cruising life... SeaVeyor had developed a shaft seal leak and Robin and Debbie jumped right on it( and it was the first morning of their arrival) The repair was made with SeaVeyor sitting in the water...What a crew, what a first day!!! We provisioned that afternoon for the upcoming week and left out the next morning. We had gorgeous weather with one little episode of rain the first evening... Our anchorages were Lantana, Ft. Pierce, Dragon Point, New Smyrna Beach, Fort Mantanzas ,and on to Beach Marine in Jacksonville. Due to time restraints, Robin and Debbie had to leave us there and head back to North Carolina by car.... We have definitely made new friends, they are Keepers.. and that's what cruising is all about!!