Today was a long day of getting the boat cleaned up after the two week trip. I can't imagine what kind of shape a cruising boats gets to with no ample source of fresh water for cleaning.
We washed the deck, then the topsides using a miracle cure for the ICW mustache. For those of you who don't know, a day or two of motoring down the ICW (at least in texas) leaves a really ugly brown mark where the bow wave rides up over the hull. When we got back I expected to have to get in the dink and do some serious scrubbing. But our traveling partners had done this before and knew the cure. It's called Fiberglass Stain Remover (or FSR) made by Davis. It's amazing. Simply erases that and many other stains -- Highly recommended...
But even with that it was a full day of laundry, Washing the boat and polishing the stainless. We're glad that's done and ready to get to bed and face getting the dink put away and cleaning the inside of the boat tomorrow.
Couldn't have been a better trip...
We left Harbor Walk about noon for the short motor over to Offats Bayou. Upon arrival, we dropped the dink and motored over to Longhawk who was anchored about 300 feet away. We used an anchor sail that had been given to us by our friends on 'August Crow', the difference was amazing. We saw Longhawk put up theirs and after seeing the difference it made in how much they swung from side to side, we were convinced that it was worth rigging it... We were right.
After a swim and a few beers, we dinked back to the boat to clean up for dinner. After a shower, I was chilling in the cockpit when I noticed a new sailboat in the anchorage. And then I noticed it was drifting down on Longhawk. I tried the radio first, and then resorted to the cell phone. He welcomed the call although I think he was asleep, but was soon on deck to fend off the boat if needed. Luckily it passed astern and wasn't a problem.
Then we met again on Longhawk for a great dinner and a visit with a friend Sam had made on a previous trip who had a home on Offats. It was great to meet them and they were kind enough to allow me to dingy over to their house after the visit and let Boudreaux do his business in their back yard.
It was a great evening, with perfect weather. We all got a bit too cool sleeping in the V with the windscoop up.
So this morning was out first anchorage out with the dog. I had the dink ready, and we were all up early, so around 6:30 Boudreaux and I are off to find a place for him to do his business. We ended up at the Moody Garden's Boat docks which are still closed from IKE damage. But they were fine for what he needed once I got past the many signs saying Keep Off! We really had no other options. He was having none of it. So we leave Offats this morning with him having not dealt with any of his business since 9:30 last night.
Somehow he made it till we got home about 2:00 this afternoon.
Today was another great day. Sunny, warm, nice winds out of the south. We've been blessed with great weather, and feel that we've taken full advantage of it.
A great trip with great friends...
We had a nice motorsail up the ICW from Freeport to Harborwalk marina near Galveston. What a great way to begin the end of our journey. This is a beautiful place. Great restaurant, great pool and we're berthed very close to both. On top of that, the slip prices here are less than what we paid last night at Freeport with very few amenities.
We arrived about 2:00 in the afternoon and after checking in, had a swim and a few drinks at the pool. Then an excellent dinner in the restaurant, followed by cigars in the cockpit and a little hot tub time.
Tomorrow it's off to Offats Bayou to anchor out. Our A/C has been acting up, so we may actually be more comfortable there than we've been in the marina with our A/C trying to keep up with the heat.
All in all, a spectacular trip with weather that couldn't have been better, Maybe I've finally lost my reputation for bringing terrible weather to every trip I'm a part of...
We decided last night to leave early and book it down to Freeport. Normally that would be a two day trip with a stop at Matagorda, but with the restaurant closed tonight and more strong south winds predicted (which makes it hard to get off the dock), we decided to go on to Freeport.
The winds allowed us to motorsail up the ICW, making great time. I saw 8.3 knots over ground. By 5:00 pm (at night) we were settled in our slips at the Surfside Marina. Another Great! day...
Another day with no destination...
We arrived at Costa Grande ahead of the group because we wanted a day to just putt around. We both launched the dinks after witnessing the Lakewood Yacht club exit the marina. Stories about power boats and their deportment will have to wait for another day - lot's of material this morning however...
About 9:30 we set off in the dinks for some exploration. Our main goal was to get up and close with a dolphin. Unfortunately, that didn't happen. We saw a few, but none as close as we'd hoped. As we puttered around the marina, we drove by a number of bird islands they've built as a part of the development. A number of them had birds nesting, but we saw one that didn't and a plan was hatched for lunch.
We came back to the boats and prepared sandwiches, beer and chips for a picnic, then off in the dink to the island soon to be claimed and named "Boudreaux Island". He had a ball there running free. Not so much the swimming, but we tested out his life jacket, and it worked fine. Wish we had pictures, but it was a wet ride out there and we didn't want to risk camera damage.
Sam declared it "Boudreaux Island" and 'engraved' such in the sand. I'm sure it will be there for eternity. Considering nothing here is charted, we wondered how we might make it official.
After that, we came back to the boat and welcomed in the rest of the tmca group from Rockport. There are about 8 boats here tonight.
Docktales at 5:30 and dinner shortly afterwards. Then perhaps another go at the saltwater pool at night...
Last night we lost power for a few hours. I wish I'd had the foresight to take a few minutes to look at the stars. When the lights are out, we're in deep darkness. But I didn't - I was focused on cooling off the boat a bit.
So, tomorrow, we're either off with the group to Matagorda, or staying another day just the 2 boats - we haven't decided as of now. Important decisions such as this get made late in the evening...
Today was simply a spectacular day!
As we prepared to leave, the wind was blowing 15 to 20 , pinning Longhawk against a slip, and giving us more than enough trouble is we didn't get away cleanly.
We were sitting in a slip with the wind blowing us off our pier. Longhawk however was pinned to the pier being on the upwind side. As they prepared to leave, there were 4 to 6 TMCA members pushing them off the pier. That and their bowthruster allowed them exit with no damage.
We also made it out without hitting anything, although I'd not want to wager on how narrowly we missed hitting a piling...
From there we motored up to the ICW and once in the ditch, raised sails, turned off the engine and sailed up to Port O'Conner. It was simply an amazing day.I never thought I'd be sailing up the ditch, but it worked out perfectly, and there just can't be a better way to experience the ICW.