Thursday, January 07, 2016

Marathon to Tavernier Key

We had planned on departing on Jan 8th but a weather window popped up a day earlier. This morning we had to hustle to get ready. Paula had to make a large grocery run and stop by the dive store to pick up the additional 100' of air hose and regulator we had ordered for her. I need to get the bikes back to the boat, go to the bank, stop by Home Depot for another gas can, then make a run to buy more gas for the dinghy. Fuel is much more expensive in the Bahamas so we're bringing extra.

 Once back to the boat I had to get the water collection tarp down and stowed.Then it was down to the engine room for prep there. Just as I finished Paula called to say she was ready to be picked up. I hopped in the dinghy and headed back to the marina. She had a huge dock cart of groceries, but no air hose. The dive store had been closed when she went by. I asked her to give them a call while I went up to the marina office to check for a package I was waiting on.

The package had not arrived yet, and we could not leave until it did. I walked back to the dinghy dock grumbling about the delay. Paula had contacted the dive store and they were going to dive over with our order. They arrived about 15 minutes later. Then I took Paula and groceries back to the boat so she could get the cold stuff in the fridge. Then back to the marina to await the package. As I walked in the office the mail truck was unloading. Perfect timing.

Back to the boat and we quickly got the dinghy hoisted and got underway. It was later than I liked (2pm) and we would not get to Rodriguez Key until 8:30 pm. I did not relish the idea of running through crab pots in the dark.

 The conditions were perfect for a run up Hawk Channel. Light winds and calm seas. The water was even more beautiful out here and we could see the white sandy bottom 20' down. There were crab pots but spaced out enough they were easy to dodge.

 The only problem to mar the day is the Furuno software on the primary navigation laptop was not communicating with the other Furuno electronics; GPS, depth, and heading. It was, at least, getting the radar input. I needed that for when we would be running after dark later. I'll have to give Furuno tech support a call tomorrow. The Furuno chart plotter is only backup, my primary chart plotter (Coastal Explorer) is working fine and is what drives the autopilot. So we can navigate just fine.

Sunset underway to Key Largo

It was a bit nerve racking running after dark with crab pots everywhere. I have a big spotlight mounted high overhead on the hardtop and kept it pointed far out ahead. I stood on the bow to allow me to see the pot floats sooner. After two hours I had had enough and decided to stop at Tavernier Key rather than push on to Rodriguez.

It was pitch black as we rounded the tip of the island. Radar showed one other large boat anchored back here. We continued past the boat and had the anchor down in 8' by 8pm. Time for a well deserved adult libation and then off to bed!


Unknown said...

Sounds fun and exciting. So you're really on your way to the Bahamas! Good traveling. Keep safe. Ann

Unknown said...

Sounds fun and exciting. So you're really on your way to the Bahamas! Good traveling. Keep safe. Ann