A Good Day's Run
04 December 2011 | Vero Beach Marina
It’s kind of fun coming down the same route we took last year. Some things are the same, and some are very different. Last year we left Daytona early and made it past the Addison Point Bridge (NASA Causeway). This year we were messing with filters and bilge pumps and so we left Daytona late and stopped and took a mooring ball in Titusville. We still wanted to make it to Vero Beach the next day (today) because it’s a nice place that also has mooring balls. This year, since we’d stopped earlier, we had 15.5 more miles to go. The only reason we could do it is because it’s Sunday, and we could get through the Addison Point Bridge before 8 AM (on weekdays it’s closed from 6:30 to 8:00 AM).
We got up at 5:15, took Fuzzy ashore, got the dinghy back up and secured on the arch and were underway at about 6:40. Since we have to run the new engine pretty hard to break it in (30 minutes at 2800 RPM, 10 minutes at 3000 RPM and 4 minutes at WOT-wide open throttle) we are making great time. However, a lot of the time we made was used up because we had to make a fuel stop mid-day. We’re getting less than half the fuel efficiency we got with the old Peugeot-Lehman. We hope that won’t be the case once the engine is broken in and we run it most of the time at under 2500 RPM.
We stopped for fuel at a marina in the mouth of the Banana River. We had to go up the river (off the ICW) about three-quarters of a mile. As we went up, Bud saw a boat that had been at St. Augustine Marine Center with us. He thought it was the same boat, but this one had a wind generator, which we didn’t think they had. On the way back, the captain was out on the foredeck, and it was the people we know. So we had a quick passing conversation as we went by.
The weather has been cool, with a mix of clouds and sun and a lot of wind, right out of the east. I put a picture of an interesting cloud formation in the gallery. I think after tomorrow we’re supposed to get more sun and less wind. Since we’re not sailing anyway, that would be nice.
Despite the fuel stop, we made it the 73.5 miles to Vero Beach by 4:30 PM. I had called ahead to make sure they had a place for us. They said we could moor, but we would have to raft with another boat. We were to radio when we got close. We hailed them as we turned off the ICW into the channel where they are. They gave us instructions to raft with two other boats. I tried hailing those boats on the radio, but got no answer. They each had a dinghy alongside, so there was no side for us to pull up along, plus, one of the boats was doing something with their jib and it was out and the boats were swinging on the mooring ball. I called the marina back and they gave us another ball and two other boat names. Bud chose which side to raft on and I had the fenders and lines ready. They didn’t answer on the radio. Bud came up close behind them and had me yell to them. After two approaches, someone heard me and came out. We told them we’d been instructed to raft with them and we’d never done it before. The captain asked for about three minutes to get his boat ready, so Bud circled back around again. The couples from both boats were there and helped us get secured. They said we did a good job for never having done it before. You can see us rafted here in the setting sun. This was taken on the way back from taking Fuzzy ashore and signing up and paying at the marina.
It was a good day’s run. We hand pumped the bilge every hour to hour and a half (it took about 30 seconds each time), Bud added fuel to the Racor filter in the morning and again at the fuel stop and all seems well. We only have a little over 40 miles to go tomorrow so we aren’t even going to set an alarm. Ah retirement, so restful!