Day Eight - Saddlebunch Harbor to Key West
21 April 2021 | Key West
Warren Renninger | Gray overcast, drizzles
Last night held little sleep for me. I had put out limited anchor rode due to the small size of the anchorage. There was only 100 feet behind to the mangroves and the the channel 100 feet ahead. I put my handheld gps with the anchor alarm set in the hatch above my berth set to go off if we moved 50 feet. Between current, wind, and gps inaccuracies, the alarm kept going off. Finally got it quiet and tried to sleep with a stuffy cabin as it went dead calm.
At 12:30 woke up to wind howling in the rigging, must have been 20 knots gusting to 30. I went out and let out some more anchor rode and checked everything. Needless to say it was a while before I dozed off. At 5:30 it was dead calm again. Got a late start and weighed anchor at 8:20 heading west.
It was overcast with very light winds from the west. Motoring again against the wind into waves of less than a foot. However, there were 2 to 3 foot swells from the the SW left over from the overnight winds. Breeze and I rocked and rolled 10 miles to Key West harbor when we turned north up the channel. I decided to anchor off the west side of Sigsbee Island, away from the majority of live aboard boats and the city mooring field. Tomorrow I plan to take the dinghy into Sigsbee's little marina and do some shopping at the Navy Commissary there. 13 miles today.
While setting the anchor, I gave it a burst of reverse to make sure the anchor was well set. It wasn't set and the boat lurched back and ran over the "floating" dinghy line. Whomp, the engine stopped as the line wrapped around the propeller. I had forgotten to bring a diving mask and I don't do well underwater anymore. I was about to jump in and see what I could do when a little boat zipped by. I saw what looked like a furled dividing flag so I grabbed my air horn and sounded it while waving at him. Ends up it was Chris from Obsessive Compulsive Divers and he was going to clean boat bottoms nearby. He jumped in and had it cleared in 30 seconds. He said no charge but I insisted he have dinner on me. Do believe God looks out for us even when we do dumb things.
After lunch, I worked fixing the boat. The screws for the autopilot were pulling out of the steering column from overwork. A drain in the steering compartment needed unclogging, wind tell tales in the rigging were worn out from the wind and a bunch of other things. Not much else to do, overcast and sprinkling every once and awhile.
'Bout time to start making dinner.