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03/05 - 03/07 - Hontoon Island Gathering St. John’s River
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Avidmagnum12



Joined: 23 Mar 2013
Posts: 668
City/Region: Ocklawaha
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2011
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: C-Otter
Photos: C-Otter
PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2024 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Counting down to the Hontoon Gathering so just a few reminders. For the new attendees the temperatures can run from 30 degrees to 90 degrees so plan accordingly. We monitor channel 72. Bring unwanted boat items for the silent auction. All monies raised will go to Hontoon Island State Park for further park projects. I’ll post a schedule next week. Looking for volunteers to talk about C-Dory subjects. Dr. Bob and Marie regrettably will not be able to attend our gathering this year. Their boat was damaged in a storm and needs repair. Bob needs to be there for those repairs.

The best place to launch is Ed Stone park off highways 44. Park as far away from the ramp as possible.

I will be doing a 10 day trip on the St. John’s after the gathering. If anyone wants to join the C-Otter let me know. Haven’t decided whether to go up or down river. Good either way.

More next week……Tom

_________________
Tom and Joyce Schulke

2011 CD 25 "C-Otter" 07/2015 to present
2011 CD 25 "My Girl" 06/2015 renamed C-Otter
2004 CD 22 Commuter "Out2C" 03/10 to 06/15
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thataway



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
Posts: 20800
City/Region: Pensacola
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: thataway
Photos: Thataway
PostPosted: Sun Feb 11, 2024 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Last year Peter and Becky Clay were gracious and camped in their camper, in the same site as Marie and I were camped in the private campground near Ed Stone Park. Peter helped to launch the boat, get it ready and clean up each day. Our campsite was less than 100 feet from the boat slip.

We attended the "meet in the middle" with our RV and I had a mobility scooter, to travel from the RV to the gathering either in a campsite or on the dock. Logistics with a mobility scooter are a bit more complicated, at Hontoon.

Our 18' Caracal ended up flooding after an extremely low "tide" event. I had "Agreed Value" in my insurance with Progressive. The agreed value, was the amount I paid for the boat, motor and trailer in 2009. It was almost double what the replacement value currently is (similar boats listed for sale.). The boat was ruled a total loss because the engines were submerged to some degree, the boat would need extensive re-wiring and there was water in the floatation foam. I bought the boat back for about 10% of the current value. My mechanic has examined the boat, and urged me to buy it back. A good fiberglass man starts on the boat on the 1st of March. We had two choices: pop the deck liner (prohibitive cost wise by this fiberglass man). The second choice is to cut the floor out in sections, determine how much water in the foam, and then rebuild the floor, using Coosa 20 Board (Urethane and fiberglass lighter than plywood and impervious to rot etc) for the new floor and most likely install a central stringer, add bulkheads, beef up the glass at the inner hull to bridge deck, and pour less foam in a manner it could not be subject to water intrusion in the future. it is a 17 year old boat, but these are the most desirable of any of the single engine cats (Rides about the same as the Tom Cat, but with higher bridge deck clearance and the same 8 1/2 foot beam).

I will be doing a complete article for this forum and The Hull Truth, including photos of the process and results. This will include kudos to Progressive Insurance and Sea Tow Salvage crew, who pickled and got the engines running within hours of the boat being hauled out of the water, which involved working into the night.

It is extremely unlikely that we could even get 4 days to run to Deland, attend two days of gathering and back home. We will be well represented by Dan and Mary Wulfman on "Full Circle" a C Dory 25 doing the loop. They left their boat on our lift while they traveled for 2 months to visit family and take care of their business, which they are running via Starlink, from their C Dory 25.

The good news is that at 87 years of age, I am still able to boat and drive a vehicle, so we still get around, or have C Brats visit Camp Thataway. We will be at Hontoon in spirit.

_________________
Bob Austin
Thataway
Thataway (Ex Seaweed) 2007 25 C Dory May 2018 to Oct. 2021
Thisaway 2006 22' CDory November 2011 to May 2018
Caracal 18 140 Suzuki 2007 to present
Thataway TomCat 255 150 Suzukis June 2006 thru August 2011
C Pelican; 1992, 22 Cruiser, 2002 thru 2006
Frequent Sea; 2003 C D 25, 2007 thru 2009
KA6PKB
Home port: Pensacola FL
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Molly Brown



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
Posts: 405
City/Region: Punta Gorda
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2003
C-Dory Model: 24 Tomcat
Vessel Name: MOLLY BROWN
Photos: Molly Brown
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2024 6:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ahh, the Hontoon Gathering, consistently a favorite cruise year after year. Sure going to miss the River this year as there was no way to prep and leave on the Great American Loop and attend the gathering. Rest assured we'll be there in spirit. And a big shout out to Tom and Joyce without whom this gathering would not be possible. I dread the day they no longer do it. Best to all the River Rats!

James

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James, Betty, Luna cat and Moki dog on the TomCat Molly Brown
Started the Great American Loop 03/2024
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Avidmagnum12



Joined: 23 Mar 2013
Posts: 668
City/Region: Ocklawaha
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2011
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: C-Otter
Photos: C-Otter
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2024 10:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the kind words James. We will certainly miss you at the gathering but totally understand what it takes to plan for the American Great Loop. You’ll have to give a talk about it at the 2025 Hontoon Gathering! Hopefully we will be able to stay overnight at the docks by then. Not that we need to but it would be nice. 😊
Safe Journeys…….Tom
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Avidmagnum12



Joined: 23 Mar 2013
Posts: 668
City/Region: Ocklawaha
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2011
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: C-Otter
Photos: C-Otter
PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2024 2:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The entrance to Ed. Stone park has been changed since the new bridge went up over the St.John’s river. From what I hear the entrance is now on the east side of the river on the south side. They may have an additional entrance later on. No signs yet but that may change in the next two weeks. Please park as far away from the ramp as possible. Use channel 72 when you get to Hontoon Island and we will help with docking when possible. The C-Otter will be there on Monday March 4th. See you at Hontoon! Tom
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Avidmagnum12



Joined: 23 Mar 2013
Posts: 668
City/Region: Ocklawaha
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2011
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: C-Otter
Photos: C-Otter
PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2024 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Prospective schedule for Hontoon 2024

Tuesday: Arrivals. Chat with other boaters. Exploring the island, canoeing, kayaking, cruising or just plan relaxing on the beautiful St. John’s River. Tuesday afternoon at 1pm campfire fellowship. Bring your chairs, questions and stories.

Wednesday: 8:30 bring items to the tables for the silent auction. Auction begins at 10 am ends at 2 pm. 10:30 am Belgian Waffle Brunch……Waffles, eggs, bacon & juice. Bring your own place settings, utensils and cups.
2 pm End of Auction. Pay and pick up your winnings by 3 pm. Cash or checks only. Rain day will be Thursday

Thursday: 10 am Galley Gadgets & Boat Gear……bring your favorites to show and tell. Vote on the best ones. Prizes! Afternoon cruise around Hontoon Island.

Tom
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Almas Only



Joined: 09 Nov 2003
Posts: 362
City/Region: Richmond
State or Province: VA
C-Dory Year: 2003
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Alma's Only
Photos: Alma's Only
PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2024 10:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sure looking forward to being there!

David & Dayna

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2003 CD22 Cruiser with Honda 90
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Avidmagnum12



Joined: 23 Mar 2013
Posts: 668
City/Region: Ocklawaha
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2011
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: C-Otter
Photos: C-Otter
PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2024 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It will be great to see you David and Dayna! Some new C-Brats coming this year and many of the usual suspects….😀

A reminder to all that there will be many manatees in the area so keep that in mind. Also be aware of the minimum wake zones.

Bring ample ship stores for your trip. No camp store and no nearby shopping.

At the silent auction I can bring a Wallas 800T stove and 220 heater blower. The stove is not working but the 220 heater works fine. If no one has any interest I’ll leave it home.

This has been a wetter, cooler winter than most with many great days in between. Plan accordingly.

If anyone has any questions or concerns please PM me and I’ll pass on my phone number.

Also looking for someone to take photos of the gathering. Colby usually does a great of it but will not be attending this year.

More later……Tom and Joyce C-Otter
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multimediasmith



Joined: 23 Aug 2021
Posts: 35
City/Region: New Orleans' Northshore
State or Province: LA
C-Dory Year: 2009
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: ENDEAVOR
Photos: ENDEAVOR
PostPosted: Fri Feb 23, 2024 4:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[url][/url] http://www.c-brats.com/modules.php?set_albumName=album3551&op=modload&name=gallery&file=index&include=view_album.php

Hi fellow Bratters. Sorry for dropping off the face of the Earth since the Barkley gathering. I Suoer Enjoyed that event and regret not being able to take the Cumberland cruise… maybe next fall. I made it home just in time to receive the news of the Bar Exam and then her swearing in the next week as Assistant D A in Orleans. She has moved back home for the present, so our lives have been really full.

I finally sprung for the Sailrite machine after struggling with a rear enclosure for the cockpit. More detailed photos to come in a separate album, as well as some nice images from the Meet in the Middle Barkley gathering… haven’t edited or uploaded anything yet. I’ve been trying to de-tether from the tech.

I would love to be there… I think of Y’all often, but it’s so far to tow for a really similar setting. It’s tough to break away at this point… I have been out on our local river the Tchefuncte and it looks a LOT like the St John…
I’m thinking North Channel from De Tour to Killarney and Mc Gregor Bay as a refuge from the oppressive heat this coming summer.

Best to Everyone
Dale
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Avidmagnum12



Joined: 23 Mar 2013
Posts: 668
City/Region: Ocklawaha
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2011
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: C-Otter
Photos: C-Otter
PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2024 7:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Less than a week to go before our Hontoon Gathering. Trust everyone is signed up! Joyce will be shopping for supplies this weekend.
Called Pat Clow this evening to wish her a happy 90th birthday. She is doing very well and sends her greetings to her C-Brat friends.
That’s all I have for now…..safe travels……Tom
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 989
City/Region: PENSACOLA
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2010
C-Dory Model: 255 Tomcat
Vessel Name: Cat O' Mine
Photos: CAT O' MINE
PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2024 8:37 pm    Post subject: Montreal Reply with quote

Pat gave us the very best advice on doing the Loop in a C-Dory...Take the historic Lachine Canal through Montreal rather than the awful Seaway Locks.

Get your air draft down to under 8 feet. We did it by removing the radar dome, only 4 nuts and 2 quick disconnects, though awkward.

Do it! Safe Travels!

John

_________________
John and Eileen Highsmith
2010 Tom Cat 255, Cat O' Mine
Yamaha F150, LXF150
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colbysmith



Joined: 02 Oct 2011
Posts: 4533
City/Region: Madison
State or Province: WI
C-Dory Year: 2009
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: C-Traveler
Photos: C-Traveler and Midnight-Flyer
PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2024 9:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You all have fun. Rosanne and I will be with you somewhat in spirit. Colby
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Avidmagnum12



Joined: 23 Mar 2013
Posts: 668
City/Region: Ocklawaha
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2011
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: C-Otter
Photos: C-Otter
PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2024 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We will be missing all of those that can’t make it this year but there is always next year. For those that can make it ……John Highsmith is going to make it possible for us to have a Pizza lunch on Thursday. So a little less cooking for everyone.

Remember channel 72 and watch out for manatees……Tom
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Water Bill



Joined: 31 Mar 2007
Posts: 129
City/Region: Lake Keowee, SC
State or Province: SC
C-Dory Year: 2018
Vessel Name: Mystery Girl (Ranger Tug R-23)
Photos: Mystery Girl and C-Swell
PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2024 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Went under the Hwy 44 Bridge today and they have moved the river channel to the west side of the bridge while they are working on removing the old drawbridge abutments. Not sure which side of the bridge you will need to go under when you all arrive so be ready for something different.
_________________
Bill Roche
Mystery Girl, 2018 Ranger Tug R-23 2017 to present
C-Swell, 2003 C-Dory 22 2007 to 2017
Boston Whaler Super Sport 17 1986 to 2007
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CPlay



Joined: 16 Feb 2020
Posts: 23
City/Region: Savannah
State or Province: GA
C-Dory Year: 1998
C-Dory Model: 24 Tomcat
Vessel Name: CPlay
PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2024 10:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cindy and I are unfortunately not going to make it this year. I thoroughly enjoyed attending the last 4 years. The St. Johns river is such great cruising. I will miss it and seeing everyone. Always so much to learn from fellow C-brats. Our 17 year old dog (Hana) is doing good for her age but not agile enough to travel or leave behind. Thank you Tom and Joyce for hosting this great event again!
-Jeff-
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