What started off as a quiet day turned into a rather interesting afternoon for the crew of GH. Here we were, taking care of a little business on Grey Hound when I called up to Anne that our neighbors boat was heading out of the anchorage "sideways!" Oh yea, the boat forgot her crew!!
So wanting to "help" I jumped into Nu-it and figured I would quickly get on board, reset the two anchors and someone can move it back into the correct location later. So.....I pull in the anchor lines and ha!!! The anchors decided to stay where they were. I just pulled in 30 feet of rotten anchor line that probably was last used during the civil war!
Quickly looking around I see three more anchors on the foredeck so "no problem". Yep, problem #2....all three were not attached to anything. But wait, I have two 30 foot lines ready to be redeployed so I tie one danforth to one line and over the side it goes.......nice, now we are drifting sideways across Barnes Sound tilling the bottom. So now the wonderful CQR goes next and after a moment we are now tilling two troughs for sea grass. Next the third anchor.....I look around and the only line on deck is a old ski rope......heck why not? So the third anchor goes over the side and as crazy as it sounds, it catches! The cat swings into the wind, I try to reset the other two and we are only a 1/4 mile from the anchorage. I come back to GH after finding (we'll call him Jorge) and he will take care of his friends boat.
A little while later Jorge goes out to get the catamaran, ties up a tow line and pulls the anchors up. Problem #3 is now set in motion.....his 18 foot powerboat only has 1/10th the towing capacity of Nu-it and away they go......further out into the Sound.
After a while we get a little concerned.....no more friends of Jorge are around, they (both boats drifting sideways, like all out of control boats do) are now heading for the channel and the Sound is about 5 miles across......a long ways! So off I go with Nu-it again to help.
Now Nu-it, at 8.5 feet long isn't the best for breaking waves and long journeys.....I think I tied a record for the farthest in a miniature boat and we'll be chatting with Guinness about that later but I make it out to them and try to help tow.......Nope! Jorge can't keep his boat running so I suggest anchoring again and through my expert Spanish we agree. I get on board again and of the three anchors on the deck and another I found in a hatch, only two remain......another two are visiting the bottom I'm guessing! No problem.....Jorge finds two more and after a number of attempts we get the boat stopped using: 1 danforth, 1 grappling hook with 4 foot of chained tied around it, 1 CQR with no chain and one folding anchor. Two of the four are using ski ropes an they are the ones that are holding! Now the long dink ride back to GH in decent size waves.
The story ended well.......Jorge finally got his boat running enough to tow the catamaran home with a Coast Guard escort and to thank us the boat was tied to two other boats directly in front of us!! At least we had something to think about all night........quite a nine anchor day!
Just before they jumped on a plane to visit "Intangible" Jeff & Cathy let us know that they can't live without the cute little double-ender with the thatched roof. We'll put an offer in for them today.......Joy to the world!!
They explained they like the "dual" use concept that this vehicle provides. Now......no airline tickets to see Jeff's third cousin who lives in Hawaii. This boat will actually be welcome in the island chain as it looks like a perfect replica that the original Polynesians used to come to Hawaii in the first place! All that remains is to get their cruiser through the Panama Canal without the Panamanians laughing themselves to death.
Secondly, when it comes time to see Cathy's brother in Alaska now all they have to do is disconnect the RV section and.......off they go!!!! I'll make sure the roof of the RV isn't thatched also as I doubt it would be grizzly bear proof.
Congrats you guys! I think you have the deal of the century.......
OK Otium.......so you didn't like our last idea for a joint in the south.
But now you have the "Chalet" in the north country and we really think you need a "love shack" in the warmer climates.......don't wait too long because we can only hold these two for so long. Make a choice and be happy without your snow pants and mittens! Remember, if you don't like these two beauties, we'll keep the search going!!!!
Back at Tarpon Basin since another front is coming through and we are getting to like having water, trash, groceries and an ice store close by. We watched the Packers kick some butt yesterday and the Paradise Pub (real local!!) and our friendly 30 kt pump out boat came by for a visit this morning. That is Captain Schyuler heading out.....we tried to get an up close by that guy is too fast for us! And oh yes, I am holding the pump out burgee.........we are in the money now!! Guess it's time to start moving north again.......
After the front passed we decided to backtrack a few miles and visit one of our favorite places in the Keys; Bottle Key. It's just quiet and beautiful, it is just nice to drop the hook and listen to nothing at all.
The first morning we awoke to plenty of fog. But a short time later our friendly tug pulled in and we had a grand time with Phil & Cathy on Buddy..............looking good also!
Cathy and Phil got their look at the Roseate Spoonbill and even practiced a little rowing.......have to keep Phil in shape "ya know"!!
After all the racers departed and with the forecast of a front coming through we decided to make an early departure and head to Tarpon Basin. The small basin is great for getting away from unsettled weather.
We had a very nice neighbor come by and welcome us to Tarpon Basin too. He/she was much to large to invite to dinner however........
We arrived at Tradewinds Regatta!! It was great to see all our old friends and catch up!! It was so much fun cheering for everyone!!! The 2-0-4 chant was in the house!!! Not to mention the "Go Katie,Kate Go"!!!
We slipped the mooring ball mid-morning on Saturday with our sights set on Tradewinds Regatta and Tavenier. As always it was good to be in Marathon but we were glad to be under weigh. There are a few changes in Boot Key ( no Dockside and the bascule bridge doesn't exist anymore but Key's Fisheries has expanded the "fish bowl"!) and we had a great time at the Fish Bowl with Tug Hill Tug and the owner of the Otisco Lake Marina!!
'Ya can't get a round peg into a square hole?????? Just a little repair to a wire in a cockpit speaker. No big deal to fix. It actually took longer to get the repair man in and out of the laserette than the repair. We've always said we count on Grey Hound to keep us flexible and strong ;-) ............
Well we're still trying to get to Tavenier from Marathon. Since we decided not to motor on Tuesday the net result is we have a N-NE very cold 20-25knt breeze.............blowing the "squirrels out of the trees"!!! No, we don't have a picture of the poor squirrels hanging on.........but we do have a few shots of a very dramatic sunset sky...
Well we were up early Tues am and it was a absolutely beautiful morning. The only problem is when it looks like this there's NO wind. 'Ya think???? ;-0 So instead of motoring 50+ miles we decided to stay a little longer!!!
We left Long Key Bight Sun am (1/9) for a run down to Marathon to re-provision GH and check into City Marina in Boot Key for a mooring ball. It was really nice to see the clear blue water of the Florida Straits. The sail was a very enjoyable down wind run and it was nice pulling into Marathon where it's always easy to get things done.
After grabbing the ball we headed off to Publix. It's only about a mile away, an easy walk. This is especially true when you happen to have the "MAGNA-CART" for easy grocery transport!!!! Thank you, Dream Chaser!!! This baby is a work horse!!
We arrived in Long Key Bight Thursday afternoon to get situated in time for a cold front coming through. It's protected for a number of wind directions particularly if you can get motor deep inside. The front came through with strong wind but very little rain. It made for an interesting evening but GH's Spade anchor held rock solid. A sunset just before the weather arrived was impressive!!
doesn't work. All 'ya have 'ta do is......... Make a new plan!!! So we headed south to seek warmer temps and explore the Everglades. We've found the area really beautiful in it's wild stark vistas and wildlife. We also encountered usually higher tides than normal, everyday the difference in tides exceeding 5 ft compared to the norm of around 2 -3 ft. Once again the beauty of shallow comes through!!! Here are a few pix of our first anchorage at Little Turkey Key. What we tried to capture is the difference between high and low tide!!
For those of you with inquiring minds Little Turkey Key N 2538.9 W 8116.7
Well so much for a plan and the weather-guessers forecast of NW 10-15. We got up early Monday am really looking forward to a great Code Zero/Screecher run to the Dry Tortugas. A forecast like that would make it a fantastic 95 nm sail!!! But guess what?!??????