January 18, 2020
That was grand! Short, but all complaining will certainly be met by snickers and sneers so it was just the right length. After Jinhee’s departure and pending weather delays I made it across to Florida (on Wednesday, arriving around 1am Thursday in Lake Worth/Palm Beach).
[some new Canadian friends (James and Caroline from Bayfield and Toronto; Todd and Debbie from Hamilton) were on the docks at Chubb Cay and were almost as excited to show me the manatee as I was to see a manatee up close. They encouraged me to water the Manatee hanging out at their boat and watch it drink from the hose. Cool. As I looked up Manatee drinking habits later, which are nothing like my drinking habits, I discover that this act is illegal in Florida. Interfering with wildlife is never a good idea, even if it’s thirsty. Luckily we were in The Bahamas.]
On Thursday and Friday I had the assistance of the YachtTech team in Palm Beach to supply parts and make improvements to Home Free. A big thank you and I will be back again soon to finalize some of the items.
Today and tomorrow I will be inching my way up to Titusville, FL where I will park the boat for a few weeks. In theory this is a one day trip, but the weather has again conspired to make things difficult. With high winds, I made a cascade of decisions that make this feel like a schedule.
First off, I booked a flight home. Next I decided to arrive in Titusville on Sunday, and then the weather happened. With very strong winds yesterday and today, running in the Atlantic was a silly choice. Meanwhile running in the shallows of the ICW alone was a foolish choice. Then I realized that my friends Nick and Karen are at their winter home in Palm Beach . . . I have an idea!
Nick kindly agreed to join me to run the boat to Titusville (we miss you Karen), and that makes the ICW possible. So this morning at 7:30am I pulled up anchor and we headed into the narrowness of the ditch. Running a boat like this in the ditch/ICW is a bit tricky. With depths of 7-8 feet in many parts, you have to be on guard constantly. I have only touched bottom once so far. Luckily at about 3 knots in a place there was supposed to 10-12′ of water.
With helpful currents and winds, we arrived in Fort Pierce around 2pm and have dropped anchor. We are only about 40% of the way, but there is nowhere to anchor after this for a LONG time and I don’t want to be in the ICW after dark. Tomorrow we will exit at Fort Pierce and run the next 60 miles or so on the Atlantic, assuming the weather holds.
Perhaps I will fill in more details later. It’s been an eventful few days. I will say that the run from Chubb Cay to Lake Worth was another awesome day on the water and I’m glad I took the advice of our new friends Roger and Patricia and slooowwd down to wait for a better weather window.