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Primrose with Mike and Diane
Mike and Diane Robinson's big Adventure!
Haul out progress
01/30/2013, Green Cove Springs Marina

We are making good progress on Primrose. Topsides are patched, painted, polished, bottom is painted with new anti fouling bottom paint (thank you Diane) and new trim colors (yellow cove stripe and Grand Banks Beige top stripe). I am now servicing through hull seacocks. Two were frozen. unable to close. After removing the fittings and soaking overnight in solvent and "gentle" tapping with hammer the frozen culprits gave up. Next up prop is being recondititoned and re sized, 7 more through hull seacocks need servicing (clean and lubed), sanitation hose needs replacing, rudder post stuffing box needs new packing and a fresh water leak needs to be tracked down.
Green Cove Springs Marina continues to be an interesting community. A family from New Zealand has two boats in the yard: Beneteau 40 and Kelly Peterson 44.
Mom and dad and 15 year old daughter are on the Beneteau and sisters 18 and 17 are on the Kelly Peterson. They bought the boats in Annapolis, sailed here and refit them to make ready for sale in New Zealand. The girls did ALL the work including repainting the hull with no help. As a matter of fact they generously gave us painting advice. The girls will be sailing the Kelly Peterson 44 to New Zealand by themselves while mom and dad and little sister head to Grenada. WOW!.......see photo gallery
Reggie and Barbara, Cal 36 friends, are working on "Submit" getting her ready for a trip to the Bahamas. Roger and Judy on Hanoah an Amel 38 (French boat) are readying to head to Bahamas then Panama. They have been cruising for 10 years from Maine to South Pacific, Malaysia, Palau all in a Vanguard 32. The Amel is new to them. There are lots of intereting folks here.

02/01/2013 | kay ryan
Are you able to stay on the boat??
02/01/2013 | Mike
Yes, staying aboard. Up and down the ladder 10 times a day. Have to carry Annie up and down too.
02/01/2013 | shirlee
Beautiful work, you two!
02/03/2013 | Mike & DIane Robinson
Thanks Shirlee!
02/06/2013 | Fred
I'm glad you're doing so much preventive maint. Can't be too careful. Climbing a ladder
10+ time a day with a dog is great exercize.
Too bad about the Clipper. I'm still not clear
what let go. Glad he got rescued. First, Flyer, then, Echo. Shame
02/09/2013 | Jeff
Looks beautiful!!! I hope I can come see it, and visit soon. What a dream you are living!
On the hard
01/12/2013, Green Cove Springs Marina

We are hauled out for maintenance. GCS Marina is a great place to haul. First it is very afforable. The owners, contractors and boaters are all very helpful. Advice from pros is there for the asking. Contractors on site have been here 20-30 years and charge $35-$45/ hour. Along ICW rates are $75 to $110. The office porch is THE gathering spot. Always 2 fresh pots of coffee brewed, cable TV on from early AM to late at night and a large round table. Folks gather to get wifi connections or just BS.
This place is reminiscent of Alameda Yacht Harbor (now Fortman Basin) in the early 1970s, except more of an international flavor. Many many liveaboards here in the water and on the hard. We've met folks here from England, Wales Canada, New Zealand, Denmark, France, A popular way to go for many is to store their boat here off season then travel by camper. There are many live aboard campers here while folks work on their boats.
Meanwhile......sanding, filling, polishing, buffing, painting.....she's starting to look respectable. Photos in "photo Gallery"

Green Cove Springs Marina
01/08/2013, 40 miles up the St Johns River

40 miles up the St. John River from the coast is Green Cove Springs. We are here to haul out and do some maintenance. Green Cove Springs Marina is a favorite spot for cruisiers from many different's affordable (cheap compared to yards along the ICW). It is an old funky do-it-yourself boat yard. A first for us was tying up to an old ship pier. Find pilings that have horizontal boards attached or use your own fender boards then deploy every fender you own is the procedure.
This place is full of cruising boats and friendly folks. Many from Canada, Europe and New England. Met a retired Danish couple (in their 70s or early 80s) who now own a Moody 38 but are old Folkboaters. We shared Folkboat stories. He is retired ship captain with Maersk
We were here less than an hour and two different folks offered to lend us their cars.
We rented a car for the day to explore St. Augustine, about 20 miles away.
Photos in "photo gallery"

01/08/2013 | Perry
I have my boat at fleming island marina. if you need assistance from a yard let me recommend my boat yard man Hal with Holland Marine. Won't find a more honest and helpful person on the river. His number is 904 69 0027.
01/08/2013 | Perry
correct number is 904 269 0027
01/09/2013 | Fred
If you see any Burmese pythons, let me know.
I need a belt.
St Johns River
01/06/2013, Jacksonville

We overnighted in Jacksonville heading for Green Cove Springs. Staying at Metropolian Park Marina is FREE!! It is a "self service" no charge down town city dock with no staff. Electricity is available via self serve kiosk. Swipe your credit card for $8.56 per day for electrical hook up. That's a price well within our budget. We are using crusing guides like and Skipper Bob's to find spots like this. St. John's River is heavily traveled by commercial traffic. We had to delay our up river trek to wait for a cruise ship casting off lines and using almost the entire width river to turn around to head out to sea. The Coasties were standing by in thier inflatable with manned machine gun at the bow. Hmmm... don't want to get too close to that ship! Other traffic was mostly tugs and barges.

01/04/2013, Fernandina Beach FL

After two days and nights in remote and rainy Georgia we stopped in the first Florida port of call. Traveling through this part of Georgia is very nice; it is wilderness, mostly marsh and very REMOTE. Cumberland Island is inhabited by wild horses but we could not spot any. We saw only an occasional crabber tending crab pots. 2 nights ago we anchored in Cedar Creek off the Crescent River, a narrow creek with a shrimper dock and one old inactive shrimp boat. Very isolated- no cell-no wi fi reception. Wow, no comunication with outside world! Just like the old days! Mike made tortilla soup.... good for a cold rainy day. Very calm-very peaceful. Last night we anchored off Jeckel Island. This more populated island now owned by the state used to be a spot for the Swells to build summer "cottages" AKA mansions.

01/04/2013 | kay ryan
So glad you're making such good progress. Love hearing about your tours. Toured Jeckel Island once with George when he lived in Georgia.
Savannah (Isle of Hope)

Early morning high tide made Field Cut passable. Brrrr 36 degrees, but it was still a beautiful day on the ICW. Stopped at Isle of Hope Marina just outside Savannah. Isle of Hope is a little hamlet with rows of antebellum (pre civil war) homes. The is no retail on Isle of Hope save the marina, establish 1926. This is such an idyllic spot. On New Years Eve treated ourselves to guest slip. This marina, like many on the ICW, offers free loaner car (Honda Civic AND a Honda mini van). With the loaner car we toured historic Savannah, and we had great dinner at The Driftaway Cafe, a local place just off IOH but a popular spot for locals, with terrific seafood. If you don't have transportation the marina will drive you to the Driftaway and the restaurant will drive you back to your boat after dinner. More photos in **Photo Gallery**

01/02/2013 | Richard
Come to Connecticut if you want cold, Mike. 10 degrees was the low last night.

thanks for all the great photos and for keeping your blog up. If you were near I'd lend you my copy of "The boy, me and the cat" by Henry Plummer, his log of a 1912 trip from Massachusetts to Florida via the ICW. Great book with lots of details, a delight to read.
01/04/2013 | Mike & DIane Robinson
Sounds like a good read Richard, I'll download a copy! In FL now its warmer already.

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