Admiral and Captain
Travel arrangements for this diversion have gone well so far. The wedding was last night, and great fun, and tomorrow (Sunday) morning we fly back to Jacksonville to resume our boat travels. We will take Monday to finish reprovisioning and head up the ICW on Tuesday.
We spent two nights in St. Augustine on a mooring - the first night was quiet, but the second was windy and bouncy. We did go ashore twice to walk around and get something to eat, but we have been here recently so we did not spend a lot of time doing tourist things.
Yesterday morning we left the mooring, intending to make the short trip (15 miles) to an anchorage at Pine Island. We were bucking a stiff NE breeze, and a stiff current until we got past the inlet. Then the current was in our favor for the rest of the day.
We did anchor at Pine Island, but the strong current was bucking the strengthening wind and our anchor chain was here, there, and sometimes leading under the boat, as we moved around. After watching this for a while, we decided that we didn't want to deal with any problems in the middle of the night in this tight anchorage space as the current changed and the wind changed. So we fired up the diesel and came north another 15 miles or so to arrive a day earlier than planned at the Jacksonville Beach marina where we will be keeping the boat while we fly to CA.
We had dinner at a nice restaurant next door last night, and tomorrow we are picking up a rental car to use for provisioning and to take to the airport. This is also maintenance time, and so far the Captain has changed the diesel oil and filter and both fuel filters. In short, we are getting ready for the last 1000 miles of our trip.
Beach at Marineland.
Lighthouse at Ponce Inlet
Spent two nights at the Daytona municipal marina - a very nice place, but not particularly inexpensive. Had a nice pizza night at a hole-in-the-wall Italian restaurant. The next night we anchored in a well-protected creek that reminded us of a Chesapeake anchorage, and now we are spending 3 nights at Marineland Marina. This is a rather isolated spot with nature trails, a dolphin center, and easy access to the Atlantic beach. No restaurants or shops nearby, though the marina is inexpensive.
Yesterday we walked the nature trail: very pretty with palms mixing with live oaks and magnolias, and so on. Today we went to the dolphin center where the Admiral wanted to swim with the dolphins, apparently to keep up with a sister-in-law. Unfortunately the dolphins are booked solid for two weeks, so we watched others swim with them.
Tomorrow we plan to go to the beach, and the next day proceed to Saint Augustine and take a mooring for a night. Planned arrival at our Jacksonville Beach marina is Sunday.
A random tug.
After three nights on the hook, during which time the Admiral added several new birds to her sighting list (it's genetic), we pulled into the municipal marina in New Smyrna Beach yesterday. We are staying over again tonight. All this is by way of drifting up to Jacksonville where we will leave arrow for a week while we attend a wedding in San Diego. There are few good anchorages in northern Florida, so we often will be going marina-to-marina. Next up is Daytona for two nights.
The weather continues to be lovely: around 80 deg during the day and 70 deg at night. We have been amazed at the absence of pesky insects throughout our rambling around Florida, but we are now starting to see the occasional fly or mosquito.
The Captain predicts a declining frequency of blog posts for the remainder of our trip. Photos of the south side of objects whose north-side photos were posted earlier would be boring. And the Captain's life-long remedy for boring publication - namely, the inclusion of more equations - has been rejected by the Admiral. (Fortunately for the addict there are many other sailblogs to consult.)
Spoil island in the Indian River.
We left the marina at Fort Pierce at 7:30 am to catch the tide and the start of the southwest breeze. We motor-sailed north about 40 statute miles, past Vero Beach, to anchor in the lee of the pictured island/sandbar. On the way we saw a lovely wooden ketch hard aground and heeled over as the result of an apparent navigational error, but there was nothing we could do to help.