Friday, March 16, 2012

Florida-St. Augustine

We meandered down the ICW in Florida.  We passed by some amazing homes.  We noticed that most of the docks do not have a floating dock platform.  The power boats speed by with out taking any notice of the boats or areas around them.  The summer must be filled with noise and wakes.  The full moon was amazing.  With the full moon came the lunar tides.  Lunar tides are tides during the full moon that are lower or higher than usual.  Lower than usual tides cam be a problem.  Luckily we came into the Oxbow anchorage during low tide.  We knew we had enough water to leave in the morning.  We anchored and had a quiet night.

If I had a land home, this is the kind I would want.

 We made a marina reservation at Chamachee Cove Island Marina.  It is one the the fancier marinas, but they have a courtesy car and marine services.  We wanted to use this stop to provision and change the oil in the engine and the generator.  They also had a special, that if you buy one night of docking, you get the second night free.  The marina is home to some mega yachts.  When they have 50 feet of dock space leftover they try to fill the slip with one of us small boats.  One of the first times that our 42 foot boat felt 'small'.  We pulled into the marina and took on fuel.  I got the boat to the fuel dock, turned it around in the narrow alley surrounding by mega buck fishing boats and got it docked in our slip.  We had the fenders on the correct side, the dock lines and spring lines out.  Our electric cord was nicely coiled. We handed the lines and the electric cod to the dock hand.  Matt jumped onto the dock and we were tied up in no time.  We even got a thank you from the dock hand.  He said he was impressed, no yelling, hand signals and everything was ready to go.  What a change from the beginning of the trip.  We have progress from total newbies to seasoned ICW travelers.  I guess you can teach old folks new tricks.  We stayed at the marina through a blow.  Winds got to around 30 knts +.  Glad were were tied up.  We waited for the tide to come up and left for Marineland.


We had to open two bridges on our way to Marineland.  The first bridge, The Bridge of Lions, is in St. Augustine.  Other cruisers have told us about the bridge tender.  He doesn't hold the bridge.  The bridge only opens on the hour and half hour.  Many people said that they have had to wait the full half hour between openings.  We got to the bridge at 3 minutes before the hour, the light was still green. Matt was talking to the bridge tender and saw the light change to yellow.  I gunned the engine a went full speed ahead.  The light turned to green and we made it through the bridge.  Never ran a yellow light in a boat before.  I think all the driving in the DC area teaches you to be fearless.  The next bridge was easy.  You hail the bridge tender and he opens the bridge.  No need to gun the engine to make the light.  Matt was much happier. 

Got to Marineland without a problem.  Pulled into the slip and got all tied up.  Going to do exploring tomorrow. 


  1. Wonderful trip and God's speed. I miss it and will be following you. Thanks for everything.

    Dennis Lindauer

    1. You'll have to come to the bay for the Valiant Raft-up in the fall. Or, just pop on by and we'll go for a sail.