02/23/2010, Directly Across from Downtown Miami
Today we moved to a spot in front of the old Miami marine stadium and across the bay from downtown. It is beautiful. Not everything is great about it though.
J at the Rickenbacker Marina next to us is a caustic ass hole. Avoid the Rickenbacker Marina at all costs. Better to lose your vessel than give this jerk a dime.
J charges 40 dollars if you land your dinghy to ask him if he has any moorings or slips available. One of his security guards gave me a phone number to ask him without me landing. J said sternly we could come ashore to buy something at the store but then we have to go. I did not want anything he had after the way he said it. He will not take money to let you land your dinghy and go shopping for a few hours. He has no fuel for you if you do not have a slip at the marina. I told him well it is his business, and he said: Yes It most definitely is.
02/22/2010, Anchored off of Biscayne Key
Well when we started to leave for the Bahamas my buddy boat Donut started spewing white smoke. So we went back and anchored at Rodriquez then went up the channel to Biscayne Bay. We are now anchored off of Biscayne Key.
Yesterday's trip was a little chilly in a swim suit. The wave were high enough to where they would have caused concern 7 months ago, but I am proud that my crew is now a little more realistic.
Debbie was learning the ropes. :-) That is she was handling the sails yesterday. Mom was in charge of communications and learning to operate and speak on the radio.
Debbie was actually screaming with delight when we would hit one of the larger waves and ventured outside the cockpit a little.
Debbie has 5 days at sea with no sea sickness and no sea sickness medicine, so it seems that part of her life is over unless we sit in a harbor too long.
The colors of the water are amazing in this stretch of Ocean.
When the weather improves we will make our way to dinner key for Donut to get her repairs made.
We never made it out of Marathon for our window mentioned on the last post. We saw a forecast for 6 foot waves over the Bahama banks the next day and we had planned to anchor there that day and sleep. So we changed our plans and decided to go to Rodruez and wait for a good window. A rusted out fuse holder stopped our starboard winches and we had to turn back.
So after fixing the winches we spent the next 2 days going to Publix, Kmart, CVS, West Marine, Winn Dixie. Then to Keys Fisheries for cheap Margaritas, Lobster and stone crab claws yum.
We had the delight of finally coming across our first group of dugongs while dinghying around to the stores. The are incridible and friendly creatures.
Well we wound up back at Vaca Key. We just cannot seem to get too far past Marathon. We got to an anchorage off of Long Key 2 days ago then heard about a horrible storm on the way. It looked like hours of time spent in 30 to 40 miles an hour of wind. We and our Buddy boat bent every sail to get back to Vaca key and found the last 2 slips in Marathon at Pancho's Gas Dock. Paradox moved so fast it was the first time that we ever lost control of her as she exceeded hull speed the weather helm spun us around in a 360. Nevertheless it was a great sail.
We spent 2 nights at Pancho's.
Tonite we are sitting comfortably at anchor outside of th harbor at Marathon. We expect to be leaving for the Bahamas tomorrow at daybreak. It will be a 21 hour in company with our new friends Mike and Debbie Baltier. Their boat is quite slow unless we have very strong winds but I have learned a great deal from Mike and Deb. They have been doing this for 13 years now. The photo shows their 44 foot Bruce Roberts.
For those that are navigation oriented here are our waypoints and forecasted wind and waves.
Time Wind Wave
0700 S 5-10 0 - 3
1300 W 5-10 0 - 1.5
1600 SSW 5-10 0 - 1.5
1900 W 10-15 0 - 3
2200 WNW10-15 0 - 3
0100 WNW15-20 0 - 3
0700 NNW10-15 0 - 3
Marathon to South Riding Rock
24 416 06N 081 07 178W
24 41 098N 081 07 640W
24 37 787 081 05 944
24 35 053 081 31 470
24 31 158 080 52 315
24 46 082 080 20 870
25 11 252 079 11 529
25 11 992 079 06 352
25 14 249 079 03 742
25 28 083 078 26 596
25 29 403 078 14 104
25 28 122 078 10 296
25 09 187 077 55 748
We spent last night just outside of the channel that goes into boot key harbor on Vaca Key. I was not too confident in our weather window for today, but I did not have to worry too long. My buddy boat Doughnut Too had starter problems. We sorted those out today and we are ready to go tomorrow.
However, a weak cold front is supposed to go through tomorrow so we will just sail to Rodriguez and take a look at the weather. If we do not like what we see then we will probably sail up to Miami for the Strictly Sail boat show and say hi to Bob Bitchin.
02/07/2010, Anchored outside of Boot Key Harbor
Today we told everybody we were going sailing, because we keep telling people that we are going to the Bahamas and then we do not make it. So we are now sailing towards the Bahamas. Tomorrow we move up to Rodriguez Key. The problem is that a weak cold front is going to move in unexpectedly on Tuesday. Time will tell if we can find a window.
If we cannot we are going to try to get a ball in boot key harbor. http://www.ci.marathon.fl.us/index.aspx?NID=26 It is supposed to be a lot of fun and we can wait there for an opening.