Cruising The Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway Georgia to South Carolina

As I have said many times in the past, I just love the ICW. The skills of a captain is required. You might think that just getting in your boat and turning the key is all it takes.  But that could get you into a bit of trouble. The winds, water depth, Current and tide tables are all involved in planning your daily trip. We like cruising between mid tide-high tide-mid tide with the current and tide. Carefully planning current sure does help your fuel mileage and shortens the time to get to a destination.    

The funniest thing happened as we stared our first Atlantic ICW cruising from Jykell Island this season. As I was in my dream world looking around Bryce yells up at me. “I think that is a police chase.” Sure enough they went flying passed us like white lightening. We could hear the sirens as they went into the distance. Later that evening I looked at the photos and realized it must be police in training. lol    

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You know this is one of my million of reasons the ICW is so spectacular to me. It’s the view

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While we were in New River anchorage for the night we were joined by Ever-After Dave & Jenni However this time it was Dave and crew. Jenni was in CA on a family matter. We missed you Jenni.

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All of our anchorages have been great so far. But this is one of our favorites this year. Skidaway River.. We anchored on an ox-bow (loop) here on the starboard side. I was a really nice anchorage with good holding.

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Our morning view as the sun was burning itself though the clouds.

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We could see boats coming and going along the ICW. I wonder how much this boat drafts? This would be the boat to live-a-board on.. LOL

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They are building another 65 foot bridge on Skidaway River. You can see the new one behind the draw bridge.  Only half of the old bridge works.  The far side is always up.

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New River South Carolina. We took a rest stop and anchored in New River while we waited for the current & tide to reverse directions. It was so funny I was talking to my sister Joyce on the phone she asked me where we were. I said some where still in Georgia. After we finished our call I looked at the map. I started laughing. We were already in South Carolina.  This seems like the area where they do a lot of parasailing about three boats giving rides here.

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This is a water taxi I believe I runs from Hilton Head Island to Daufuskie Island. They sure do know how to kick up a huge wake.

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This is a light house that is on Hilton Head.

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I will keep our updates coming as we travel the ICW in many states.

as always thanks for following our blogRed rose

Atlantic Ocean to Jekyll Island

As sunset approached we came into the inlet of St. Simons, GA. Once again the wind predictions (forecast)  were not up to standard. We left Jacksonville  thinking we were going to have east winds and actually had North East winds.  So we pounded into close reach winds and waves.  It was not a pretty picture out there. This made for a bouncy unpleasant crossing.   We left Exchange Island at 6:00 a.m. in the morning and arrived at anchored 8:45 p.m. I have to admit I was tired and a bit grumpy.  Everything was upside down in my refrigerator. It was so bouncy I couldn’t even  go below to make something to eat. LOL But that is okay I have a few extra Covid pounds to take off.

As we made it into port, we noticed this was the inlet of the burning car carrier. We saw this on the news but never really thought about it. They still had a fire crew spraying water on this burning mess.  Apparently, last September 2020 It was reported by NPR that a cargo ship filled with new vehicle capsized in the Inlet of Saint Simons Sound. The vessel belongs Hyundais Glovis. This is the inlet we came in. We anchored behind Jekyll Island.

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I can’t believed this huge & heavy car carrier could capsize here in the inlet. YA know; it is still undetermined how she capsized.  Goes to show anything can happen at any time.  If you are interested in reading about this you can google Capsized ship in Georgia.

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Our morning was much brighter. As I walked up the steps to have coffee in the salon, I had a few of these freighters pass by behind us.

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A few minutes later this fishing boats came by with flying screaming birds following it. They must get lots of bird poop on those boats. LOL

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There is always the perfect time in the morning to have coffee on the bow of Beauty. Here on the NW side of Jekyll Island has been extremely windy. We have had the winds as high as 49 knots here.  Rain came through yesterday. The weather hasn’t been so good. I should say sunny most of the time but winds and rain kept us mostly inside. The tide is low in this picture we can always tell by how far the water level is on shore.

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A few years ago Bryce and I were here by motor-home and we walked out on this pier to see the dolphins swim. 

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These Tugboats always look so pretty to me.

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Thank you for following us!Red rose

Exchange Island to the Atlantic Ocean

We woke up early to take the out going current in the St. John’s River to the Inlet of the ocean. The current increased our speed.  Which was amazing because we often fight against the current.  Bryce was careful to time the outgoing current so we did not exit the inlet with tide against the wind. This made such a great trip out of the inlet.

There is a lot of industry on the banks of the suburbs of Jacksonville. I am always excided to see the hard work of the unknown people. What a great job they do.

This is Dorothy McAllister It’s 6:00 a.m. and the crew is off to a great start of the day.  The second photo is Stacy McAllister. They must be sisters.

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I started laughing.. this looks like a salt area that DOT has in the winter to salt the roads up in Michigan. Maybe they started salting the roads in Florida.

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This looks like an area where Big ships get fuel. I guess they have to prevision up also.

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Well, doesn’t this look messy in the water. We also see these bubbles on the Great Lakes.

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Have you every wonder when you ordered items on Amazon or the web how it get delivered? Well I am willing to bet some of it rides on one of these container ships. Some of the vessels come into port in Jacksonville. The top picture shows one just arriving into port. Those big blue arms in the sky remove the containers from the vessel on to the land to be shipped on a truck.

 

The second picture shows a close up view of “Tote Maritime” loaded down on her way into port to be unloaded.

The third picture shows me taking a picture from Beauty as we see a container ship approaching our port side as its passing us. 

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This is some car/truck carrier barge.  It was unloading as we passed.

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These are Navy Ships in the dry docks on the St. John River.  Interesting to see such large ships on a dry dock.  The bottom picture left shows a smaller, but still quite large vessel on shore.

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This tire looks like it found a home. It’s funny I think I have a photo somewhere that shows the whole tire on the beach.

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Now this is a huge mooring ball. 

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“Mr Connop” is towing a barge.  You might notice there is a cable between the barge and “Mr Connop”. I have heard sometimes the cable is so long that boaters don’t see the cable and think that the barge is just anchored. The boaters, jet skiers or whatever type of vessel goes between and hits the cable causing a fair amount of damage.

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Jacksonville Fire Department right on the St. John River

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The crew of this boat reached out to us just before the inlet to the Ocean asking us which direction we were headed; North or south. Bryce told them we are headed North and they were too. They are delivering the boat up to Annapolis MD. They were planning a three day travel on the ocean. 

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Thank you for following us! Red rose

2021 Launch at Green Cove Springs Marina

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Okay so not every thing is a bed full of roses. But the question is how to you fight the odds against you. First we had not one but two plugged up toilets. After 14 months of sitting she needed some tender care. Both heads had to be taken apart and the pipes and joker valves had to be clean.   Second issue: we had two hydraulic lines burst on the jet ski hoist. Now if that wouldn’t make a person blow their top! The smiles just keep coming from Bryce I am so proud of him. This is what makes a good team. After we are finally done for the day we just hug and get ready for what comes next!

This Journey we are headed North to Michigan. Beauty needs time in fresh water. We enjoyed a small gathering for Ben’s Birthday at the Marina. Ben and his lovely wife Erin are live a board’s there at GCS marina.  We would like to thank Erin for directing us to Eddie Bauer for our beach chairs. Bryce and I both looked at our chairs before we left but neither one of us grabbed them. I am not kidding you; I searched the area for chairs and could not find any.

I love my flowers. Bryce found out that he bought me flowers when I arrived home from the grocery store. 

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Erin & Jody getting ready to celebrate Erin husbands birthday. 

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Happy Birthday Ben. This was a delicious cake!

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Bryce hard at work. Trying to get Beauty ready for her trip back to the Great lakes.

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We set on her bow morning and evening watching the crew at GCS work hard at putting and taking out boats.  We enjoyed saying good morning to our sailor/motor friends as they walked by.

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Finally our day arrived with winds & rain  the crew arrived to put Beauty on the trailer and move her our to the hoist. Jonathan and his crew are such a delightful bunch to work with. 

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While they were moving the boat I decided to show you all the store/office front. I like the teal color they painted the deck. It’s so Bahama like.

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When you go into the Store/office you are greeted with a warm welcome from either Lori or Jody.

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Now back to the launch. Jonathan is directing his crew on what to do next. Some are new comers.  They are all totally nice people.

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Look it’s magical… Beauty is in the water. We were asked to stay the night due to wind gust so we did and we pulled out early morning while the current and tide worked with us.

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Our first anchorage. OM! I never knew that  could miss Beauty I absolutely enjoy my life on her.   It is a dream!

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Our second anchorage at Exchange Island. This is where we either put up or take down our sails. We put up our head sail early this morning. Now she feels complete.

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Red roseThank you all so much for following us! our first blog for 2021

Cruising Season Cut short

This was a strange cruising season.  We were headed to Puerto Rico and then the earth quake hit.  So then we decided to head to the Bahamas and the Covid19 hit.  I guess we just were not meant to leave the US this year.

Given the current world situation we decided to haul Beauty out early this year. Although it is heartbreaking, It was the best thing for us to do. As we cruised up the ICW we noticed a few Marina closures. What would we do if we could not get water, food or even fuel. So we made the decision to haul out.  We also had some issues at home. I will say this; we have been treated with great respect from the team at Green Cove Springs boat yard.  They are a great bunch of people. When I called up to see if it was possible to get hauled out earlier, Lorie said to head up that way and to keep an eye on whether the state closes them down or not.  We would just have to play it day by day.

It had only been a week since we left Boot Key Harbor in Marathon when the order came in to close down the Keys. All visitors must leave! I suppose we headed up north just in time. When we arrived up by Cocoa we found out that the Canaveral lock was closed so we had to continue up the ICW No Ocean going sailing. That was fine with me the view was very pretty on our journey north.  

We pulled into the anchorage at Titusville and Bryce fueled up the boat. The lad at the dock said they weren’t taking any transient boats at this time only people with reservations. The following morning we headed North again.  We went to one of my favorite anchorages in Mosquito Lagoon.  

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This is one of the Islands along the way as we headed towards Haulover Canal; just off the Indian River. The birds really like it here.

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This is the tip of Haulover Canal as we by passed it.  This area is always full of people fishing.

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The Haulover Bridge opens for us. It’s funny the first time we came though here we saw alligators but we haven’t seen any over the past few years.  This leads us into Mosquito Lagoon.

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This person was fishing off his kayak. He said he wasn’t having any luck.

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What a cute Pelican. I told it to smile given it was on camera; but it was a bit shy.

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I just love the view here at the tip of Haulover Canal.

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After anchoring in Mosquito Bay we took the jet-ski out to explore the surrounding Islands.

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Look at that smile. Bryce loves the beaches…

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The shore line was lined with seashells

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As the East winds blow the waves against the shoreline, you can see the relentless effects of erosion.  

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We anchored the jet-ski and explored a few of the island. This area is lined with several areas to explore but some of them will have to wait till the next time. 

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The water is so clean you can see the shells as we walked to shore. I tried my best not to step on them.

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After we passed though the St. Augustine Bridge, we continued on our way North. We pulled a 12 hour day and we made it to exchange Island.

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As we approached the St. John River we could see the dredging  going on to allow the big ships to come up the river.

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We literality had to zig-zag around them. 

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These tug boats push the barges around. Notice all the tires they use for bumpers.

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As we motored passed Jacksonville we could see the crew ships docked. Many of the still had people on them. Workers were not allowed to get off the ship.

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This is Norwegian Sun Underneath the red top we could see people relaxing. When we were out sailing in the Atlantic Ocean We could see cruise ships out waiting to arrive into port.  A few of these ships were quarantined because of Covid19 cases on the ship.

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We ended up having to wait for the train to pass before they lifted the train bridge.

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Finally R & R in the St. John River. We anchored for a few days as we waited for haul-out day to arrive.  We were being hauled out on Monday but we went in a day early. We felt like total snobs because we didn’t mingle much with anyone; It felt weird! People were walking around talking and here we are sitting on the boat.  We did talk to many that walked by from our boat as they stood on the dock.

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The amazing team at Green Cove Springs hauled us out. Here Beauty sits until the fall. Last summer we purchased this little motor home to help us transition between Florida & Michigan. 

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Thanks to all of you who follow us!Red rose We apology for the delay in this blog. 

Off the Shores of Miami FL

Off the shore of Miami Florida, in a Bay called Stadium Marine, we sit and wait for the winds to settle down to make our journey further North. I can’t believe the boat traffic in this bay.  Seems like every evening nearing 4 p.m. jet skis start appearing and other boats arrive. The tiny little island that is here between us and Miami gets packed with people still. I tell ya they are still having fun.  It seems that the groups are smaller though; perhaps limiting sizes to 10 people as was requested.  Bryce and I love to dinghy over and meet other boaters. However we are complying with the order of social distancing. We have been away from most any people now for about 10 days. We would like to start visiting again; because that is what we do. This is really hard; not just for us, but for all of us. We just need to comply so we can get back to enjoying life once again. 

Here we are in the bay. Bryce likes us getting off the boat and going for a dinghy ride so we don’t go cuckoo..  I think this is a good replacement for yard work. I am sure if we were home I’d be out working in the yard or on Boatnik’s (power boat).

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This Pelican has the right idea.. I didn’t know they were so heavy that it could bend this poor buoy! LOL just kidding Smile

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Incase you are interested; this is the stadium Built in 1963. It use to shine with the shadow of Miami in her back ground. This Miami Marine Stadium is on Virginia Key Miami Florida. It once provided a view of passing speed boats. She was the first stadium built for power boat racing in the United States. Now it is abandoned and is full of colorful confetti. Sailors and power boat come to anchor to hide from winds in this bay.  Some just come here to party.

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This shows the art up close. I am sure some chairs are missing due to hurricanes and storms. 

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A few boats are sunk or beached probably due to a previous storm.  This happens periodically in Florida.

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A little bit of excitement in the bay. When the police and the Fire & Rescue showed up.  They talked a bit then went over to the sunken fly bridge boat. We thought they were going to lift it; but they just circled it and drove off.  It probably was not an emergency.  

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Bryce found an isolated place without any people so we could go to shore and look across the bay and relax off the boat.  We noticed a dinghy rowing across the bay. It was the owners of one of the beached boats. We watched as they bailed out buckets after buckets of water.  Before we knew it they were crossing the bay with their little sail boat.

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It’s not a beach but it did the job. We like our new umbrella it screws into the ground and we can tilt the umbrella too.  No one on this isolated beach.

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This shot has a view of the bay. we could see the stadium a boats anchored.  The water is warm (80) and clear.

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Later that evening, I looked out; what a great view of Miami.  Always nice to see the night lights.

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We have left Miami and are now anchored at Port Pierce.  It was a 124 mile run in the Atlantic.  This is our map you can also follow our anchorages here, http://trackmytour.com/7krz1 

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This shows how we get to our anchorage from the Atlantic Ocean. The City Marina is closed for fuel. With the Coronavirus, many businesses are closed.  In the Florida Keys everyone who does not live there has to leave by tonight.  Resorts are closing, Stores are closed, Restaurants are closed.   With that said, we are planning on an early pull out.  But if Florida goes on a lock down, it may take longer to get hauled out.   On the bright side, boaters are still out enjoying the warm weather.  Looks like families getting out of the house.

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In spite of the Coronavirus, we are enjoying ourselves by relaxing on the bow and taking in the warm breeze.  Take a bit of time yourselves and breath.

As always thank you for following usRed rose

In Light of All the Craziness Miami FL

Well, in light of all the craziness, I will not let it engulf me. We are isolating ourselves as expected, but I refuse to make our lives the darkness of days! So with that said I put a smile on my face.  As I look at the shore line anchored here off Miami my heart and prayers goes to all who are infected with the Coronavirus all around the world.  But it doesn’t hurt to smile.  I like to dress up and look pretty. It always makes me feel better when I get the blues. My dishes and vacuum appreciates it as I dance around the boat. LOL George looks at me as if I am crazy. Bryce doesn’t notice me; his face is in a computer working…lol

Well, After a long day of work Bryce and I loaded up the cooler and took a dinghy ride. We can’t go to the beach. We want to stay way from crowds of people as we are told to by the local news. So I hope you all can find things to keep you busy. I wonder if quarantine means you can’t work in your yard? Lord knowns we have lots of yard work to do when we get home.

Okay with all that said….are you smiling? Smile  I forgot to share with you that before we left Marathon we participated in a “RumBrella” dinghy race. I don”t think the idea is to win but just have fun. It was a hoot!  This was long before the coronavirus scare.

A “Rumbrella” race is a dingy race where you use an umbrella to power the dingy to the finish line.  the “Rum” comes in at the end where the winners are given a “Rum Ball” bottle of rum.

Two of the kayakers teamed up with one another and came up with the Sex Witch contraption. 4 lawn chairs it was awesome.  

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Dinghy’s headed to the starting line….

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Okay so you might know; this is the starting line. We all had to have one hand on the line when they blew the conk shell.

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This is the group behind us. I could not take pictures because I was In control of the rudder. 

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Our new beach umbrella came in just before the race.  What a way to initiate her.   You can see Bryce holding the umbrella and me controlling the rudder (oar).

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Well, with all said I hope you liked this. I was downloading my camera and had forgotten about the race. Have I made you smile yet?

Thanks for following usRed rose

After Three Months In Boot Key Harbor, Florida Keys

After three months in Boot Key Harbor we untied our lines from the mooring ball C-14 and headed up Hawk channel the coastal side of the Atlantic Ocean. We stayed our first night on the South side of Rodriguez Key. It seemed so free from the hustle & bustle.  While we were in Boot Key Bryce did so much maintenance on the boat. She looks awesome.   This was our fourth season in the Keys.  If we make it back in December we will celebrate 5 years. I think it’s time for some photos.

For my birthday we had a visit from Mike & Miranda It was so…Much fun..

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They drove down from St. Petersburg to see us for the weekend so we crammed so much fun in just two days, We visited Bahia Honda and enjoyed an ice cream and a walk along the boardwalk. It was a rainy day. We made an appointment to take a tour of the turtle hospital.

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Finally it was time to head back to Marathon for our visit to the Turtle Hospital. Okay remember; I shared that this was our 4th season here. That’s how long it has taken us to visit some awesome places. This place is amazing it was so worth the 27 dollars person (Adult) to visit.

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When a turtle is found injured; the hospital is called to the location just like for us humans. The person who found the injured mammal gets to name it. As you can see by the photo, this one is named Crush. When they release it back into the water they take it back to the same location it was found. I can’t say it enough. This was so educational for me.   

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Here is an iguana getting a shower from the rain.

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Isn’t this the cuties thing; they even have an ambulance.

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Well, 4 years into our travels the time has come to where we needed to replace our dinghy. We figured we would wait till we got back up to Michigan. But while Bryce searched the web  one night, he came across a rigid dinghy that is exactly what we have been looking for. We called about and it had been sold! Darn it; the price was right and everything. We were both kind of disappointed. However a few days later it was still listed. What the heck. I called them again I spoke with the owner of the place. He said the person who wants it keeps saying he will come get it but never shows up. If we want it, come and get it. Hum.. Buy the time we rent a truck and get there, will it still be there. Now it’s first come first gets it with cash in hand. We took the gamble and went after it. As you can see we are the new owners of an amazing hard dinghy. I love it. She fit in the back of the truck as if it was made for her.

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Now that we have her where are we going to launch her. We no of no launch ramp near Boot Key Harbor. Bryce told me not to worry about it that we will find a place. By the time arrived back to Boot Key it was nearing 2 a.m We ended up using a wheel barrel and putting it in at the seawall off the dock in Boot key. It was easier then I thought it would be.

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Okay the following morning Bryce woke up and had to get a good look at her.  I know it doesn’t look like it but there is the same amount of room in the new one. Man you can literally stand on her side without tipping her. I love not having tubes and a soft bottom. LOL Now when we zoom; the bottom no longer flexes.

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Even George likes our new dinghy.  Ok.. he was not enthused about getting on it, but soon got used to it.

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Well, we are in Miami now staying away from shore. This coronavirus is keeping us on our boat. We get off on to the dinghy just to sight see from the dinghy. It hard not to visit with other boaters but we are staying distances. Stay healthy our Family and friends. 

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January is Here 2020

Lets make It the BEST Year Yet 2020

Well, with the new year at hand I sit here wondering what lies ahead for 2020. I came to the conclusion anything is really possible no matter your age. Nothing should hold us back. So with that said I’m sure there will be some setbacks. Lol, but that is just part of life. Soon we will be letting go of our lines again and head back towards the Bahamas. Marathon Boot Key Harbor once again has been good to us. The meeting of new and old friends is always the best things along our travels.

The saddest is when the heaven calls for yet another angel.  It was just a year – ago we celebrated Marks birthday here in boot key harbor from sailing vessel ALA.  Mark you will be greatly missed. 

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January 2020 was brought in with some awesome new friends, Left, Dennis, Brit, Randy, Sue, Sherry and Selene. It was a great night. Thanks for celebrating with us.  It was a noisy, happy New Years Eve on Beauty.

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We took the jet ski out and explored the milky looking waters in the mangroves.

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It’s a shame to see all the rubbish and broken down vessels that lie hidden in the mangroves.  People seem to just walk away without even a second thought.  I am sure some people live among these dilapidated vessels. It is a hidden community out here.

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This crab pot boat is actually among the living in the mangroves.  We waved to the young men as they were removing the catch of the day.  

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This vessel has found itself a home tied into the mangroves. I sure would hate to be them on a non-windy day.  Although this might look beautiful to some of you! Lurking among those Mangroves are monsters you can’t see!! When the breeze stops  they come out and attack you. You see people swatting themselves but there is nothing to see only little red bumps. They are called No-See-Ums.  They are itsy-bitsy bugs with big teeth.

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I think this was a nice area at one time.  I am sure this building was attacked by several hurricanes.

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Did you know if you want to find a Hermit crab, look at low tide near a rocky area. Hermit crabs have a hard exoskeleton body, their head, legs and pincers can extend out of his conch like shell. Their body coloration can range from grayish green to red, however the tail section is usually a grayish pink hue.  They inhabit other creature’s shell.

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This is a Portuguese man o war. They are also know as a Man-of-War in the Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, Indian Ocean. The Portuguese man o’ war is (Physalia Physalis) People relate them to a jelly fish when actually it is a species of the Saphonophore. They are a group of animals that are closely related to the jelly fish.  A Saphonophore has various forms and functions. Did you know that the Man O’ War is like a balloon floating on the water? Lurking beneath the Man o’ War are long  tentacles strands and polyps that often grow to 30 feet get this the could extend to a 100 feet.  These powerful tentacles contains stinging nematocysts, microscopic capsules full of coiled barbed tubes that can deliver a heck of a punch paralyzing and killing small fish and crustaceans. However, the Man o” War sting is rarely deadly to humans. It does however contain a painful punch along with welts on exposed skin. If you are walking along the beach and see a Man o’ War dead on the shore be warned that the man o; war can sting you weeks after it has been washed ashore.

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Sand boarding instead of snow boarding. LOL On Sombrero Beach. LOL

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The biplane cruises over our heads as we hide beneath our umbrellas from the sun. They take people on plane rides showing them some of the most beautiful areas of the Keys. 

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Well, our friends this cover the end of 2019 and the start of 2020 Thanks for following us. Red rose

Merry Christmas From Boot Key Harbor, Florida

Merry Christmas, From our boat to your home. We are still in Marathon celebrating the holidays. 


On Christmas day. I stood on shore waiting for the food line to shorten before standing in a long to get food. I saw this couple come in on their sailing dinghy. I think I would like to try a sailing dinghy.

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The line for the great feast was even longer than this photo.  The sad thing is much of the food was gone by the time the line ended and we got there!! They announced 180 people showed up for Christmas dinner.

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This is a close up view of the new (outer) docks after Erma took out the older docks.  They really are nice dinghy docks.  There is much more dingy dock space than before.

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Here are some acquaintance we have met from S/V Purdy Suite they are unfortunately being towed back to their boat. It’s sad they have a small Mercury like us.  Those small four strokes aren’t worth a dime!  We are also having periodic issues with ours.  Carburetors are a big issue.  You would think in this day and age, we could get a reliable gas engine.

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We headed back to Beauty to turn on the Christmas lights and watch the dinghy parade from our deck.

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Okay here is a view of Beauty with her lights all lit up. We didn’t have any lights when we arrived here but Bryce asked what I thought about ordering some. I really didn’t think we would be able to put the lights up with the high winds. But Mr. Engineer figured out how to outwit the wind.  As you can see.  They are quite cool.. Even has a star at the top!!  A total of 800 LEDs on our 60 foot Christmas tree.   

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Thank you all for following our blogRed rose