24 January 2010
So we start our planned exit from Fort Lauderdale around 8:30 to be ready to cast off right at 9:00 and get that first bridge opening. Jacquie comes to our boat to tell us that they broke their raw water strainer and will need to make repairs. Judy and I decide to leave anyway; there is nothing we can do to help and we're wanting to move on.
So as I indicated we have some timing considerations today as we "bump outside" to go down the Atlantic to Miami. We have to go outside because there is a bridge, the Julia Tuttle bridge near Miami which offers only 56 feet clearance (and with our 60 foot mast this simply doesn't work).
Recall over the many posts where I've commented about the many bridges along the ICW that the fixed bridges are all 65 feet or greater. Somehow the engineers and planners of this bridge screwed up by nine feet!
It's a very pleasant day with light westerlies. We get our 9:00 bridge, safely transit out the New River, hit the 9:30 (actually the bridge tender held it open for us a few minutes, normally not done) then out the wide channel to the Atlantic. It's only 22 miles or so and it was very pleasant as we follow the coast down to Miami. We are actually able to sail some although the winds are quite light.
Miami harbour is a huge affair with as you can imagine, many cruise ships coming and going. But, we turn in and navigate the somewhat complex maze of channels towards downtown Miami, then turn south towards our destination today, Coral Gables.
In its ostentatious sort of way, Miami is pretty. The skyline has many skyscrapers but they are generally light, pastel coloured buildings and set against the white beaches and blue sky it's quite attractive.
We plan on spending some time around here so our next few posts will chronicle our several stops here.