In Fl./ Destination Bahamas
12 January 2007
Ahoy, ya'll- let's get this party started. Who's got the rum?! Well after spending the holidays with the families we got underway, had a blast bringing in the new years with my bro in wrightsville beach, then had to recover from the party. We left Jan 3rd heading down to southport and out the inlet, bound for fernandina, Fl in order to cut some serious miles off the icw by skiping SC and Ga. As Murphy's law would have it it wasn't long (actually within 1/2 hr. out the inlet) that the test came. Shuting down the diesel with a full press of sail is when it began, a horrible ear-aching rattle and grinding that sounded as if it was comming through the hull. ???? Great! Looking at the prop shaft, it was a relief to see it was not spinning with it in reverse (This is the position I leave the engine in when under sailpower to lock the prop in position). This ment it was not the worst case which would have been a transimision problem, but it was still not a good problem as we gained milage witha stiff 15/20 tailwind. A decision to turn around now would put us motoring into a stiff headwind and seas along with an entry back into southport in the dark. To add to this our window for northerly winds was only for the next 3 days, just enough time to reach Fernandina before another front was due to bring southerly winds back around. So time to think of a solution, and quick because this sound was ripping our nerves to shreads and awfull images of what it could be were creaping into our minds. Solution?, well since it sounded fine all the time we had been motoring down to Wrightsville and up to this point the decision was to crank it up and run at low rpms in fwd. Problem solved . . . well at least temporarly. Now to calculate the fuel burn at 1500 rpms, measurd remaining diesel and find out we should just have enough to run it nonstop for the next 72hrs. Mission accomplished! Just today a little over a week late rthe problem was fixed correctly, a missing key (how it came out I can't imagine). Lots of free diving and $2.18 for a new key and it sounds tighter than ever.
Oh, so our coolest experience so far?, well upon arriving in Indian Harbor Beach, just north of famous surfing spot sebastian inlet, we are in the dingy looking for a dock in a marina to tie up to when we strike up a conservation with a guy on a cool looking cat. Turns out to be Kevin Welsh (pro surf photographer) who we had met and took out sailing in Manteo while he was passing thru doing his surfNRG tour. WOW Kevin what a hook up, thanks again! We spent the evening grabing a bite to eat with him and his wonderful wife Cindy then getting the royal tour of his new love a Wildcat 35 catamaran. He then invitied us down to watch the final day of the sebastian inlet pro surf contest which he was shooting. Total insiders hook-up. Saw some killer pro surfing and had a great time hanging out, and randomly ran into a buddy I met on eleuthera named Johnny o', what's up Johnny! So that was the coolest random thing thats happened so far.
Well a southerly wind is forcast for a few days from now, so with an eye on that we will be scoping out a window for the crossing. Until then we're having a good time, fixin some gear, hanging with friends, and enjoying the warm weather. Till next time, take time before time takes you.