Monday, November 21, 2016

Super Moon Blues

You may have noticed that we recently experienced a natural event called a super moon. It occurs when the moon in unusually near the earth, creating a visual moon that is larger than its normal size. It was a once in a lifetime event. We looked for it, and unfortunately, the first night of its appearance we were under clouds. The next day we were on the move, heading to Skull Creek Marina. Quite a pirate name, if there was one. It is indeed, located on Skull Creek, just behind Hilton Head Island. It turned out that we needed a slip for a couple of days for a quick check up on our engine, so we were headed into the marina.

The marina emphasized that we should enter the marina at slack tide, so that we would not have any problems with the strong tidal currents through this area. We did, and it happened to be slack low tide. Now, when we ask for a slip, we always emphasize that we draw 6 feet, so that they don't place us in a slip that is too shallow. We did the same here, and didn't give another thought to depth. Well, wouldn't you know that the super moon brings super tides, too? To say we planted our boat would be an understatement. When it was all said and done, we had 4.5 feet of water under us, and Tatiana started showing off some of her side where the sun don't shine, providing a new interpretation of a super moon.

Thankfully, the tide returned, and two hours later we were in our slip and ready to take on some maintenance. Oh yeah, and when we left at slack high tide we had over 13 feet in the same spot!

Happy Thanksgiving!   

Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Dog Days are Over!

The weather has been a big part of the days of our lives lately.  Hermine and Matthew became close friends of ours, and have now left us with a few lessons on life aboard.  Thankfully, we have had a hurricane plan since we arrived in New Bern, and were able to follow through and keep both us and the Tatiana safe.  In between, we spent the better part of September working on the boat, getting it ready for the trip south.  We are now sporting a brand new dodger, or windshield.   We have stripped and re-varnished various teak parts around the boat, and tracked down some whirring maintenance with the propeller.  Matthew also allowed us the opportunity for some haul out maintenance on the boat, including some new bottom paint and renewed shine to the hull.

In the boatyard before re-launch....

Tatiana is sporting her new dodger!

Following Matthew, the weather cooled dramatically, and our wandering toes are getting itchy.  Thankfully, it was not a case of athlete's feet.  We instead set our sights on Ocracoke, NC.  A couple of nights anchoring in the South River and then in Silver Lake at Ocracoke were just what we needed to renew our focus in cruising and getting ready to head south.  Unfortunately, Matthew left many others in less fortunate situation that ours, and our path ahead is full of uncertainty.  So, we are taking our time before we head off, so we can make sure there are no new navigational hazards in our path. 

At Ocracoke, we were able to head to the beach and check out the local lighthouse. 

A view from the anchorage of the lighthouse...

This called too smooth sailing, also known as motoring

Enjoying some OBX beach time!

For now, we are back in New Bern.  We have just a few final projects and a few final goodbyes to all our new friends.  It has been a great summer here in NC, and we look forward to coming back one day.  But, you know, summer's over, so it's time to head south again!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Catching Up!

You can't say that we are not adopting some key slacker habits here on our blog. It has been a while since I posted, and all I have to say for myself is that I blame the heat.  It has been summer here in North Carolina, and it's been a steamer....and as a result, I have had a hard time stringing sentences together in a coherent form.   My apologies to our die hard followers that have been checking daily for updates!   We are planning to resume cruising now that it is cooling down a bit, so stay tuned for more up to the minute action here at SailingTatiana....

Since we left off, we were still in the Bahamas, and heading back to the US.  A front had stalled over the Carolinas, leaving us with a light and favorable SE breeze to carry us back to the US.  Our planned route was to leave the Little Bahama Bank late in the afternoon for an overnight to trip to Port Canaveral, FL.  The gulfstream would give us a nice push north, and make this the longest overnight passage thus far of 160 nm in about 28 hours. 

As we were crossing the bank for departure, we had some extremely flat seas, and therefore, good motor sailing conditions.  It gave us a great opportunity to study the bottom beneath us in crystal clear water.  We had a pair of dolphins stop by to wish us well on our journey, here is one showing off for us.

Our trip across the gulfstream was nicely uneventful.  The biggest problem was the gulfstream was a bit narrower and faster than planned.  The result was that we weren't getting an even steady push north toward our destination.  So, in the middle of the night, and the middle of the gulfstream, I jibed to head north and got to experience 10 knots over ground for a short while until we returned to our intended course toward Port Canaveral.  Just so you know, it feels exactly the same going 10 knots with 3 knots of current as is does going 7 knots with no current (as I know it should).  At 2 am, however, it can cause wild ideas to start popping into your head....things like "at this rate we could be in Charleston, SC by afternoon!"  We thankfully diverted back to our original destination and found Port Canaveral to be a great inlet (no tidal current here, because they put in a lock between the ocean and ICW).

We safely made it back to US soil, and the most immediate and obvious change was the water color.  The ICW along the east coast is full of mud and stuff, and visibility is about 1 foot on a clear day.  The only times we would see nice clear water would be on our two short jumps "outside" where we returned to the ocean and the deep, clear water there. 

The second obvious change was that we had returned to cheesy Florida and the only place in the world to find a space shuttle shaped hovercraft.  Not sure why, but this guy buzzed around us three times, and I was not even making any lunar gestures in their direction...honest!   

The trip up Florida's coast was a good introduction to the East Coast ICW, where tides and timing bridge openings become a major component of your daily planning.  As would become a theme for our "delivery" trip to NC, we passed up many fun exploring opportunities in an effort to move the boat as quickly as possible along the coast.  Our goal was to find a safe place in NC, or further north, to spend summer storm season, and to be there by June 1. 

As we left Florida, and were looking forward to a two night stay at Cumberland Island, GA.  We had backpacked on this island a few years ago, and were looking forward to exploring it again.  It delivered as we remembered, with towering oaks full of Spanish moss and palmettos.  It almost feels surreal walking these trails and exploring the island. 

Of course, the ever present wild horses of Cumberland Island also provided some great company on the island, too.

We continued our way up the GA coast without incident, and made a small outside jump to Hilton Head, SC.  We stopped at Beaufort, SC, and enjoyed the scenic downtown.  We had planned to stop in Charleston, but it turned out that we were arriving on a Saturday, and Charleston harbor on a Saturday is a good place to pass up.  We did just that and instead found a nice quiet anchorage a few miles up the ICW, where we could watch the shrimp boats go by, appearing to float through the grass...

We continued one night stops all along the SC coast and into North Carolina until we found ourselves at Wrightsville Beach, NC.  There were a few days of bad weather coming through, and we were waiting for a chance to go outside to Cape Lookout near Beaufort, NC (we were getting tired of bumping the bottom of the ICW).  We knew at this point that our goal was to reach New Bern, NC.  But first, we spent two nights enjoying the national seashore at Cape Lookout before making our final day trip to New Bern.  The Cape Lookout anchorage was very scenic, with loggerhead turtles, views of the lighthouse, more wild horses, and miles of undeveloped beaches.  Here is us at the lighthouse.

New Bern became our home stay for the summer months this year, and we have thoroughly enjoyed our time in this scenic and active coastal community.  I'm not sure when we'll be back here, but it has made our list of places we could live someday.

Thus concludes our first season of cruising.  While we have not yet been living aboard full time for a year, it seems appropriate to end this season before we begin our second migration south for the winter.  Some fun facts: since leaving Sale Creek Marina on November 10, 2015 we have been underway 75 days for a total of 2640 nm miles.  Not too shabby for a couple of professional slackers. 

Friday, May 20, 2016

Our bahamas trip has made it all worthwhile...

For a good part of our journey (especially the current one) we have sometimes felt more like delivery captains than explorers. First it was a mad dash south to out run winter.  We are currently on a dash north to find safety for the upcoming hurricane season. But, in between, we spent a glorious month in the Bahamas, and it has made it all worthwhile.  Here are the highlights, in pictures, because words don't do justice to this place...

Sailing along in our swimming pool clear water to our next destination...

Snorkelling from our paddle boards in Sandy Cay

The turbo turtles of Manjack Cay!

Sailing to another beautiful beach!

Another beautiful beach.

The Hopetown Lighthouse

Tatiana with her new friends in Hopetown (taken from the lighthouse)

Kristen conquers Tahiti Beach!

Kristen floating in space


Needless to say, we really enjoyed our time in the Bahamas this Spring, and are already planning our return next winter, with hopes of exploring more of the Bahamas.  For now, I will celebrate another completed post the way we celebrate the end of another great day in the Bahamas...conch style!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

To the Abacos!

Bimini may seem like a strange stop, if you are headed to the Abacos.  Indeed, most people head to Bimini on their way east toward Nassau and beyond.  However, we were interested in avoiding the mess that is Miami, along with about a million of the people there, too.  So, east to Bimini, and then north to West End.  Nevermind that wind was conveniently blowing us this way, too.

So just where is West End you ask?  It the west end of the Great Bahama Island, nearly due north of Bimini and across the Northwest Providence Channel.  Since our ultimate cruising destination was the Sea of Abaco, it would require going around the north end of the Great Bahama Island and then east of the Great Abaco Island.  It doesn't look like much of a destination, but the Sea of Abaco (which I would call more of a sound) is actually a wonderful cruising area.   Once we made it around West End and onto the "bank", the great cruising began.  The passage across the NW channel went well, the highlight being all the flying fish.  Our night at the posh Old Bahama Bay marina at West End was great - we took advantage of laundry machines and filled our water tanks.   Once we got on the Little Bahama Banks, we did not see water over 20 feet deep for a whale of the a time, but I get ahead of myself.

The deck hand enjoying the view from the helm on the outside passage from West End end before entering the banks. 

The Banks are protected from the ocean swell, and make for wonderful sailing conditions.   We sailed across the Banks and anchored at Great Sale and Crab Cays along the way.  Just around the corner from Crab Cay, the Sea of Abaco begins.

Our first cay in the Sea was Powell Cay.  It was here where we finally had our "we arrived" moment.  It has been a lot of go go go to get here.   At last, we found ourselves on an isolated idyllic beach, and no where else to be but here.  Powell is uninhabited, but there is a trail across the cay to the Atlantic Ocean side.

The ocean side of Powell Cay

Who needs structure when you snorkel sporting your very own fish attracter pants?

We stayed at Powell Cay two nights, and then the wind turned and it was time to move.  The great thing about this area is that there are a lot of anchoring options nearby =  less work and more play.  :)

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Gateway to the Bahamas!

We planned our departure from Marathon with a two day weather window to get to the Bahamas.  To avoid an overnight passage in the gulfstream, we left Marathon and traveled up the Hawk Channel and anchored near Key Largo, at Rodriguez Key.  The Hawk Channel is the near shore waters along the Florida Keys between the keys and the ocean reef, about 5 miles offshore.  It is much more protected than offshore, but still far from the calm of the TN river.  Our second day would be the long day to Bimini.  It would be our longest single day trip, totaling 73 nm and our first crossing of the gulfstream.  The first 23 miles continued inside the Hawk Channel, until we reached Angelfish Pass, where we ventured out.  Since the gulfstream runs north at about 2 knots, we would be pointing the boat almost due east and being pushed north, to end up at our destination...Bimini!

The crossing was mostly pretty awesome.  The color of the ocean when it's several thousand feet deep is an amazingly deep blue.  We had some man-o-war jellyfish joining us that day, along with two other boats also making the same crossing.  While we didn't plan on the boat company, it is reassuring that you picked a good day to cross when you have others doing the same thing.

We arrived after an uneventful day of motorsailing.  The depth changes rather abruptly from thousands to hundreds to tens of feet as you come onto the Bahamas Bank. The guide books warn about this, but it was still pretty intimidating to go so suddenly from deep blue water to a turquoise color that you can suddenly see right down at the rocks, coral and sand!  But we managed not to run aground, and since there are not good anchoring options here, we tied up at a marina and cleared customs.  Customs was a mostly painless process, there are so many boats that clear in here that the offices are near the marinas and are quite accommodating.  Next stop, the pool, and then the beach!

We spent five nights in Bimini, waiting for our next weather opportunity to head on to our next destination.  In the mean time, we enjoyed swimming and snorkelling on the beach, swimming in the pool, and generally exploring this tiny island.  It is amazing how many people live here, and how friendly and welcoming they all are to each other and visitors.  We felt very welcomed and enjoyed our stay on the "Gateway to the Bahamas".

More sunset candy...

Monday, March 28, 2016

Kristen's Marathon

Our next stop after Sanibel would be the Keys!  In between were some great stops that we hoped to explore, but the weather was not working for anything but an overnight trip to Marathon.  So began our marathon to Marathon.  Kristen agreed that would be the closest she would ever come to running that far.  The overnight passage was long, and full of crab pots.  It wasn't until we were arriving and passing under the seven mile bridge that I realized that we had crossed into the Atlantic ocean.  Ok, maybe not as significant as crossing the Atlantic, but reason enough for a celebration.  Maybe even more reason for celebration was the availability of a mooring ball in Boot Key Harbor upon arrival, and we immediately paid for a week in advance.

It seemed that most our time in Marathon was spent walking up and down the overseas highway, as it was a mile to either Publix or West Marine, in opposite directions, of course.  We had a few projects and provisioning to complete and this was a good place to get that sort of thing done.  We also had a dive trip and a trip to the beach to balance out the work/play routine.  It can't be all work in the Keys, right?

Kristen waves hello from 20ft under...

Our next leg would be taking us to the Abacos in the Bahamas, and I'm not sure how much we will be able to update the blog from there.  Feel free to click on the map page to see our current location, so you know when to wave, if you happen to be passing overhead.  :)

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Oh my Darling, Ding Darling...

Leaving St Pete was once again bitter sweet.  We gave up a nice and snug harbor and found ourselves heading south toward new horizons.  Our ambitions wanted to take us offshore for a quick jump to Dry Tortugas, but the weather was driving us slowly down the intercoastal waterway.  The daily 15-20 morning SE winds would turn SW and build to 20-25+ after lunch when the seabreeze kicked in, making it too rough on the gulf, so we chose to move slowly down the ICW.  Between the bridges and shallow water everywhere, I think a few more hairs turned grey that week.

Leaving Tampa Bay, passing under the Sunshine Bridge

Our first night was on the Manatee River, near Bradenton.  No, we didn't see any manatee.  We did see a whole bunch of other anchored boats, and learned a lesson or two about anchoring with reversing currents with company.  The lesson is that you should not expect a good night's rest in these conditions.  After the Manatee River, we ended up in Sarasota, where we picked up a mooring ball for a few nights.  We got to meet up with more friends in Sarasota and explore this pretty city.

After Sarasota, we landed in Venice after a short but very blustery day.  With little anchoring options in Venice, we chose to tie up at a marina.  While expensive, the early stop did allow us the afternoon to walk to the beach where we heard some fun live music there.  On the way back, we impressed ourselves with our self restraint to pass up all 14 options for ice cream along the main street in Venice...except for the first one.  Nothing like finishing off a perfect day on the beach with some pizza and a malt!

Tied up in Venice in the early morning light, next to Hatchett Creek Bridge

We left Venice, and were headed toward Charlotte Harbor.  We had discovered Cayo Costa several years back via sea kayaks, and again with a charter boat, and we hoped we could find refuge in Pelican Bay on this trip.  However, the tide and wind would need to cooperate to get us in, and today, the wind did not.  We ended up at Useppa Island, across from Cabbage Key, where we were rocked and rolled all afternoon to the wakes from boats passing us on the ICW.  The wakes finally subsided in the evening, and we landed the dinghy at Cabbage Key and had a fabulous dinner.

Still looking for refuge from the strong south winds, we finally moved to the north side of Sanibel Island, where the Ding Darling Refuge is located.  Here we found the wind protection, but were still rocking and rolling with wakes from the ICW, but thankfully, that calmed at night.  While here, we took the dinghy and thoroughly enjoyed exploring the mangroves in the refuge.  We saw lots of great wildlife including our first manatee of the trip.

Not a manatee, but an equally unusual sighting

Our plans from here were changing quickly, and we need to make the Keys before it gets too hot.  Wait a minute...did I just say that?  We have been running from winter so long, and now we are running from summer in March?  Such is the life of a vagabond.    

Saturday, March 5, 2016

St Petersburg, FL...we must like it here!

We arrived in Clearwater tired and ready for a break.  However, we weren't into the vibe there, so we continued on after just a brief two night stay.  We anchored at Shell Key, and wouldn't you know it, we found shells there.  We were heading for the mooring field at St Petersburg Municipal Marina.  When we arrived, we new we found something special.  We ended up moving into a slip, and have enjoyed a month tied up to the docks here.

View from the marina at sunset

Old friends, new friends, family, perfect weather, and a truly enjoyable waterfront location.  Wow, where did the month go?
This is the resident osprey, who normally would be perched atop a sailboat mast to eat his breakfast, but this stormy morning, he chose our slip piling!

We are heading south in the morning, working our way to the Keys before it gets too warm.  What a strange turn of events to be running from warm weather already!

Saturday, February 27, 2016

The Big Bend

Our next overnight would take us across the Big Bend area of Florida.  This area is full of very shallow inlets, and since we have 6 ft draft, we were feeling very unwelcome here.  We were a bit dissappointed that we couldn't do more exploring here, but at the same time, a big overnight jump like this would take us to warm weather, finally!

We staged for the jump outside of the town of Carabelle, and actually spent a nice, albeit cool, day on the beach waiting for the strong northerly wind from the last cold front to subside.  As the day went on, our anchorage became more and more rolly, and it seemed that the wind was shifting to the west.  That's ok, I thought, we have protection to the southwest, but where are all these waves coming from?  By 3 pm, it was clear that we needed to move.  The wind was southwest, and we had 2-3 foot whitecaps all around.  So up anchor and head south across St George Sound to Dog Island, where there is just barely southwest protection, but lots of south protection, and the way the wind is shifting, it might be just what we need.  It also turned out that there were three other boats anchored there, so lemmings we became.  I fully expected to be moving back to our prior anchorage at some point in the night, but the wind just faded and we had a good night's rest.

Sunset hiding from the wind at Dog Island

At sunrise, we were up and heading out East Pass toward Clearwater!  In total, the passage would be a little over 150 miles, and at our cruising speed, that would take nearly 30 hours.  So an early start today would get us into Clearwater in the middle of the next day.  We had another beautiful sunset, while a bit cloudy, still showed us some beautiful colors.

Sunset, about 50 miles from shore

By morning, we had lots of fishermen around us and we new the shore wasn't far away.  We also had the welcoming committee greet us about five miles offshore.  A group of 6-8 dolphin enjoyed our bow wave for about about 20 minutes!

I think they are camera shy, not once did they smile for the camera!

Immediately upon entering Clearwater Pass, we knew we weren't in Kansas anymore.  For one, we went from cool morning air, with multiple layers and full foul weather gear to short sleeves!  For another, we passed a boat that looked like a shark.  And then one that looked like a pirate ship.  Welcome to south Florida.  Did I mention that we like that it's warm here?


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Exploring the last of the panhandle of Florida

Once we recovered from our overnight trip to Port St Joe, it was time to explore!  We took the dinghy from our anchorage to the municipal marina.  What a nice town and marina!  We both looked at each other, and said, yep. we could live here.  This was our kind of Florida.  Miles of beaches, friendly people, and no condos!

Unfortunately, the one major drawback to our staying here - it is still cold here.  We still have no heat on our boat unless we are plugged in to A/C power, and freezing temps are freezing temps, even in Florida.

Our next overnight weather opportunity was just a short four days away, and we needed to move through the ICW to get in position at Carabelle, so unfortunately, our stay in Port St Joe was cut short.  We headed up the ICW and made our way to Apalachicola.  We anchored across the river from town, and had a beautiful view of this cool harbor town.  We toured the museum and enjoyed the history of the town.  It was once bustling with various trades over the years, but now it has gotten a bit sleepy and just about perfect, if you ask me.

A view of the waterfront in Apalachicola, from our anchorage.

The quaint streets and waterfront view of Apalachicola.

Or, was it just a chance view of Tatiana while crossing the street?!?!

Leaving Apalachicola, we headed a bit further east toward Carabelle.  We stayed at anchor for two nights outside of town, to position ourselves for the overnight ahead.  There we found lots of undeveloped beaches and a friendly attitude among everyone we ran across.  What a pleasant part of Florida we had discovered.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016


Ok, maybe this title is a bit backwards, but in our case, that is just what we saw.

When we left Pensacola, it was to be our first "outside" jump.  Due to several low bridges on the intercoastal waterway, or ICW, we would need to go out the Pensacola Inlet into the Gulf of Mexico to get around these bridges.  We needed to get as far east as Panama City, but we chose to go a bit further east, to Port St Joe, which would be about a 120 mile trip.  It would be about 20 hours total from our departure at the Santa Rosa Yacht Club to Port St Joe.  To avoid arriving at night, we left late in the morning, and timed our arrival for first light.  On top of that, it's best to time the travel through through these inlets into the gulf with slack tides, so that current and wind don't combine to mess with your chi.

Around 9 am we departed to head toward the gulf.  Our trip through the pass was flat calm and lovely.  Out we go.  We had a few other boats that were heading through the pass with us, one going straight to Tampa, and the others stopping short in Destin.  Well, we had our plan, so off to Port St Joe we went.  We sailed further south than the direct line in hope of taking advantage of some SE winds that were supposed to fill in some time during the night.  Otherwise, the passage was nearly windless, so we got to see what motoring offshore was like.  Besides a bit more roll, it was a lot like motoring anywhere else.  Big suprise.

Ready for the darkness...

Sunset was awesome.

We were both filled with apprehension as the sun went down.  We had been preparing for this jump for weeks: between arranging our safety gear, making everything secure above and below deck, and planning the trip with weather and charts.  Even with all our preparation, we were both thinking that we were doing something wrong as the sun went down.  However, just as the final light of the sun diminished, a near full moon began to rise in the east.  We've never seen the moon so blindingly bright.  Wow.  On we motored.  In the middle of the night, we noticed our speed increased by about 1.5 knots, and the water warmed up about 10 degrees.  I think somehow we landed in a random gulfstream current.

At first we thought how fun, it will make the trip faster.  But this messed with our planned sunrise arrival, and that was a problem.  So, around 2 in the morning, we slowed way down, to around 4.5 knots.  Apparently, the change in our engine noise attracted the attention of some dolphins, because after just a minute or two of changing the engine speed, we had 3-4 dolphins show up to investigate.   The light of the moon lit up their silhouettes underwater, so we could watch them under water and surfacing.  It was amazing.

Sunrise was incredible.  There's nothing like staying up all night to appreciate the  light and warmth of the sun.

Welcome to Port St Joe.

We dropped the anchor near a beach, watched for a while to make sure we weren't going anywhere, and then collapsed down below for a well-deserved nap.  Another new experience had been successfully completed.  Now we were ready for the next (bigger) jump to the South, and Warm Weather!

This post is dedicated to the late Katherine Drozdek, who always encouraged me to follow my dreams and fill my life with memories.  Thank you, Grandma.

Monday, February 1, 2016

The Return of the Smiley's

Everyone kept telling us while we were waiting in Mobile that we were so close. They were right. Since leaving, our logbook is filled with smileys, you know, the kind you use when you experience something you like.  Not that living on the hard for a month wasn't smiley worthy, we were just happy to see something new...

We left and had a nice motor sail down Mobile Bay. It can get a little bouncy out on the bay, since it is so long, and even the light winds forecasted turned to 10-15 by the south end of the bay. It was nice to be able to unroll the jib and get an extra knot of free speed. We ran out of bay before we could take advantage of all the wind that filled in. Our first stop was to another Marina, as it was supposed to get down below freezing (anchoring out when it is below freezing does not earn a smiley).

On our way down Mobile Bay, we had a hitchhiker.  This guy was climbing all over our boat for about an hour.  For a while, he was even closing his eyes for a bit of a nap.  The whole time I was hoping he wouldn't poop, which of course, he did.  This smudged his smiley.  

Our next day was a short one to the anchorage everyone seems to use when leaving Mobile: Ingrams Bayou. It was great place to spend the night, and the anchor came up without a chain full of mud. This earned a smiley from me - usually it comes up full of mud and clay, and this meant we were in sand. This was another short day, and one that allowed us to take a small break from motoring. Yes, we actually turned the motor off while underway and went for a sail. Unfortunately, it was just to “tune the rig”, as it was our first sail after stepping the mast. So we sailed one tack, and then back on the other and ended up in the same place we started.  Later that day, we had our first dolphin experience, when all of a sudden, one surfaced right next to the boat and scared the pants off of us.  It was wonderful, and earned another smiley.  Our anchorage that night was at Fort McRae, at the inlet for Pensacola.  What an amazingly beautiful place.  Beautiful water that was full of dolphins, pelicans, loons and gulls and was surrounded by white sand beaches. 

Unfortunately, there was some strong weather brewing, and we needed to find shelter for a few days, and ended up at the Santa Rosa Yacht Club for a few nights.  This was a really cool place to wait out some weather, and get ready for the "overnighter"...

Thursday, January 21, 2016


After waiting for three and half weeks to order our shaft, it came in 4 days.  All at once, we got the shaft, a splash and a mast!  Our time of luxury here at Turner Marine spa and boat yard has drawn to a close.

Here are all the new parts ready to be launched.  The cutlass bearing is mounted in the sleeve on the right.  It supports the shaft, and when it failed, it wore the shaft down and both needed to be replaced.  

Here comes the splash!  It was a long month, living on the boat "on the hard."  We were really happy to get relaunched.  And no, it doesn't actually splash in the water.  It goes much slower than that (thankfully).  

 Immediately after launching, the crane picked up our mast and stepped it up.  Things are sure looking up now.  

The next day we put all the sails up and continued getting ready to continue our journey.  It looks like the next weather window to cross Mobile Bay and on to Florida is in a few days...