Panama City to Ft Myers Beach Fl.
28 November 2016
Promise left the dock in Panama City on Monday Nov. 21st, 2106 @ 8 :40 am. We left with the outgoing tide and were soon on our course for the Cape San Blas shoals. We rounded the shoals around sunset and then charted a new course for the Tampa Bay sea buoy, which is 185 nautical miles. This does not sound like a far distance via vehicle, but travelling 6 mph on a boat takes quite a while.
It should be noted that at some point in the trip we were 70 miles from land in all directions. At that distance there is no phone service and VHF does not work. There is no residual light and the stars are beautiful. We saw at least 10 shooting stars and each night the moon rose after midnight to keep us company. This leg of the trip went well, however; seas reached 5-6 feet on the bow, which made the ride somewhat uncomfortable.
We arrived at the Tampa sea buoy after crossing the ship channel, without incident. We travelled due east towards Anna Maria Island, and as we approached land the seas became calmer. By the time we were 1000ft off of Anna Maria Island the Gulf was as calm as a swimming pool, so we dropped anchor and slept for approx. 12 hours. Travel time from Panama City to Anna Maria island was 48 hours, which made it somewhat difficult to establish a sleep-and-watch pattern.
On Nov. 24th, 2016 @ 9:00 am, Promise was underway headed southeast to Ft. Myers Beach, Fl. We decided not to make an overnight trip and opted instead for a quiet anchorage off of Englewood Fl. and a simple Thanksgiving dinner, which consisted of ham, deviled eggs and green bean casserole, which when you are underway is a dinner fit for a king. We really enjoyed it, but of course everything tastes better on a boat. Fortunately we had enough leftovers for the next day.
On Nov. 25, 2016 @ 6:11 am, Promise was underway headed southeast along the Fl. west coast. We had an east wind, and motor sailed, making good time on a 55 mile run, and were on a mooring ball at Ft. Myers beach by 4:00pm.
We'll be here a few days awaiting a weather window and on to the Keys.
Thanks to Brent for the honey roasted turkey.
Dale and Christina
Pictured is the mooring field at Ft. Myers Beach