12/19/07 N29 53.938 W81 17.443
Cape Francis, Fl (St. Augustine).
We have a couple of beautiful days of sailing and motor sailing. The conditions have been nice for comfort, but shy on speed. The winds have only been 5-10 knots and the 2-3 ft. seas have been just behind the beam, so it has been a very comfortable ride.
Last night when we pulled into Cumberland Island we were greeted by a group of the wild horses and a pod of dolphin. What a greeting from the locals!!!!!!!!!! The night before we had stayed at Jekyll Harbor and I decided to come outside using Jekyll Inlet. What a mistake, it was on a falling tide so there was a standing wave. It is narrow with breakers and shoals. I won't do that again!!!!!!!!!!
Oh and I almost forgot being boarded by the Coast Guard for an inspection, which we passed with flying colors!!!!!!!
Today I heard a great radio conversation between the Coast Guard and a shrimper. The set up is: all day the CG had been broadcasting a report of a vessel on fire. Finally the following conversation was heard
CG helicopter pilot: "fishing vessel directly below me!
Shrimp boat captain: "this is the "A.L Minikin" sir, how can I help you
CG pilot: "Captain is your vessel all right?"
Shrimp Boat: "Yes sir, why do you ask sir?"
CG pilot: "Your vessel was reported to be on fire!"
Shrimp Boat: "Oh no sir, all is well, she just smokes a bit! All though she don't seem to be smoking as bad as usual, you should see her on those days!!!!!!!
CG pilot; "So all is well?"
Shrimp boat: "Yes sir, you mean all them reports all day were about me? If I'dve known I would have called somebody. You kinda scared us when you hovered right over us. I sure am sorry for everybody's concern, but we ain't on fire!!! Sorry for the smoke, but the engines are a little old!!!!!!!!
When the pilot reported his finding to the base he did kind of chuckle, when he reported the vessel usually smokes worse than it was today!! LMAO
Well as I mentioned earlier we are heading down the ICW and waiting for a weather window to jump outside and be a sail boat rather than a SLOW motor boat! The ICW has its own beauty if you enjoy the solitude of vast marsh flats with isolated small islands! There are many spots where you see nothing for as far as the eye can see and this will last for hours on end. An occasional dolphin/porpoise will break the silence jumping out of the water near you! You can certainly imagine that this has not changed for hundreds of years! As usual we have seen very few boats, maybe one or two cruisers. So other than some local fishermen and crabbers we have had it to ourselves.
Yesterday it rained off and on all day, but we did finally get the tidal flows in our favor, which gave us an extra knot or two!!!!!!!! It's the small things you appreciate :). But needless to say getting to our anchorage was very welcome. Being wet and cold all day takes a toll. But we are now tucked in behind an island, "Wahoo Island", with some large trees to shield us from the forecasted 20-40 Knots of wind out of the Northwest switching to the North on Sunday. So, with the forecast for rain, FROST, and a lot of wind, we will make this home for a day or two.