[ Contents ]
DaY 81 OF OUR GREAT ADVENTUREBrooke Smith
01/20/2012, Mooring off Lignumvitae Key
Today we left World Wide Sportsman Marina for a nice trip to a Florida state park on a close by key called Lignumvitae. The trip tried my navigation skills as alway around the lower keys with very little water in any channel. We were leaving the "Little Basin with only about 4' of water on an outgoing tide. It was only because the low was supposed to be higher than normal by about 6". I felt the boat touch from time to time until I got to the deeper water of Yellow Shark Channel. The channel led to an intersection channel again with not much water until we felt our way into the dock at Lignumvitae. Ranger Robbin Tangen met us and welcomed us to the island. It has been sort of protected since 1919 and finally turned over to the state parks and recreation. Lignumvitae is a tree that grows very slowly. We saw one that could not have bee 15' tall and it was estimated to be 400-500 years old. There were several rare trees there. Iron wood that was used on the decks of submarines in WWII as if a piece came off it sank. I thought all wood would float. There was a very interesting house built out of quarried coral from the island. The island had been a coral reef thousands of years ago and was submerged at that time and now is 14' above sea level.
DaY 78 & 79 OF OUR GREAT ADVENTUREBrooke Smith
01/19/2012, Islamorada, Upper Matecumbe Key, FL
"You can check in anytime you want, but you can never leave" That's the way we were starting to feel about Marathon. But finally the Wednesday forecast was for light winds!! Yes folks we were going to leave on Wednesday. We took Liquid Therapy off the mooring to the dock and took on water and got one more holding tank pump out so we would be ready for tomorrows departure. We celebrated in sorts by going to happy hour at our favorite dinghy dock bar named "DOCKSIDE" and had a sunset margarita. Then we went back to the boat and got our clothes and bath supplies for one more bath ashore and then to the "HOOK LINE AND DRINKER" restaurant right across route 1 from the marina. We had their famous lobster mac and cheese a dozen stone crab claws and a Florida Sushi roll. That really was a treat. It was then back to the boat for our early morning departure from our mooring ball in Boot Key Harbor City Marina..
DaY 77 OF OUR GREAT ADVENTUREBrooke Smith
01/18/2012, Boot Key Harbor City Marina mooring E4
So, I awake to the howling wind. Which just keeps me in a semiconscious state at night when I'm trying to sleep. Things run though my mind. And all of a sudden WAY back in time the sound of the wind reminds me of something I've not thought of in years.
DaY 76 OF OUR GREAT ADVENTUREBrooke Smith
01/16/2012, Boot Key Harbor City Marina mooring E4
SUSAN'S BIRTHDAY! So we took it easy all day. NO WORK. NO PROJECTS.
DaY 75 OF OUR GREAT ADVENTUREBrooke Smith
01/14/2012, Boot Key Harbor City Marina mooring E4
What to say? What to say. We were leaving Boot Key Harbor today with 10-15 kts forecasted. We were going to run the Hawk Channel (Ocean side) rather than the ICW which is really the Gulf Of Mexico and has lots more open water and it's realy shallow. 7 1/2' in the channel. The wind forecast changed yesterday afternoon late and forecast went to 15-20knot until TUESDAY! So, we are staying on our mooring.
DaY 72 OF OUR GREAT ADVENTURESusan Smith
01/14/2012, Key West
The day started out early for us with the alarm going off at 6AM. Today we're headed for Key West by bus to meet Wanda and Windy Chandler, our neighbors from back home. They were going to be in Key West on a cruise ship. After dinghying to shore and stopping by the "STUFFED PIG RESTAURANT" for a 'home made that morning cinnamon bun' and coffee, we hopped aboard the bus for our two hour ride to Key West. It's only 50 miles, but this 'local' bus stops often. We had a nice chat on the bus with a couple, also on their boat in our harbor, waiting for a good crossing day to the Bahamas. Exchanging tips with other cruisers is always fun. Key West was pretty much still asleep at 9:30 in the morning. As we walked toward the cruise ship docked near Mallory Square, roosters were crowing! It was not long before we met up with Wanda & Windy! It was really great to see familiar faces and we started talking just like we were back home! We walked a bit down Duval St and popped into Sloppy Joe's as they have a webcam. We sat at a table, ordered Bloody Mary's and e-mailed and called people to look at us on the webcam. Jonathan called from NY and we all got a laugh waving at the webcam. Carter, Wanda & Windy's daughter, emailed us that she had seen us too. After walking, talking and shopping much more, it was time to eat, again, this time at the Conch Republic Seafood Company. Nice yellowtail snapper and fish tacos. W & W re-boarded Enchantment of the Seas around 1:30, we walked around, and found a Wells Fargo ATM! Then we headed for a tour of the Ernest Hemmingway House. That was fun, even with the power going off, stormy, and six-toed cats running all around. Very enthusiastic, 21 yr old docent! We were able to make the 4:06 bus back to Marathon. It was dark and VERY windy! Much of our bus ride Brooke was checking Sombrero Light weather station, 5 miles off shore, directly out from our mooring ball and it showed steady 40 knots, gusting to 50! YIKES!!! We were just at Sombrero several days before to try and snorkel! Too many jelly fish. When we reached our dinghy, wind was blowing so hard, we decided to put on life jackets to go in the dark, the 200+ yards to Liquid Therapy. After Captain Brooke got us headed in the right direction,we made it safely to our swim platform!! Both of us got totally drenched from salt water coming from the waves into the dinghy. Oddest thing was this squall with such high winds was not predicted!! All in all, a fun day!