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Great Loop All FL Segment Adventure
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Sat Apr 29, 2023 7:53 pm    Post subject: Great Loop All FL Segment Adventure Reply with quote

Great Loop All FL Segment Adventure

Greetings Brats!

We decided to cruise both coasts of FL and the Keys (much of which we’ve previously explored) starting from Jacksonville, FL. We cruised a one-way Segment from there to Murrells Inlet, SC in 2019.

The day before trailering over from Pensacola, the F250 ‘check Engine’ light came on. Oh, Great. I have an OBD code scanner and the three codes were ‘reductant heater A+B+C circuit performance.’ I erased those and started the truck back up to find now only heater C was the issue. The next
Ford service appointment is late next month. No one there would return my call re whether a DEF heater circuit would even be activated in FL at 80 degrees. I did some internet research on this issue (always dangerous). ‘Severe damage to catalyst…Repair ASAP’ ETC. We decided to press on towing to JAX at a comfy 60 MPH getting 12.1 MPG with no engine or ‘performance issues. The Navy Lodge had a very nice suite with full kitchen for $84.

The next day we launched into a transient slip at the very nice NAS marina for an incredible $9/night including 30A shore power. We had enough gas to go 60 miles at 2.1 MPG. The Navionics app computed 35 miles to a marina with gas on a reasonable auto route, but it was really 65 miles. The last five miles we ran with one engine @ 1800 RPM and the other down but off making 3.4 MPG. We coasted onto the fuel dock on fumes. Almost filled the tanks for only $530, which is half last years marine gas cost on the Chesapeake.

Lesson learned: Confirm route distances using at least two different sources. WWG gives SM locations, but Navionics and Garmin ALWAYS take you out inlets into the Atlantic and into the next one so the computed route length is useless. This is a very common complaint on the AGLCA forum. And ALWAYS review any Automated route before following it. The only FREE app that can do automated routes that I know of is OPEN CPN on a laptop. GPX files can be exported or imported.
Some scenes from St Augustine city marina:











It’s a boat, so it’s ALWAYS SOMETHING, but everything important is working for now. If any Brat on our path wants to visit or get a TC255 tour, shoot me a PM. Any CD can do this within a decent weather window, which is 98% of the time 9 months per year or more.

Safe Travels!

John

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



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Wed May 03, 2023 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The cruise from St Augustine to Daytona Beach is relatively easy if you follow the recommended route dashed lines on Garmin or any of the other comparable navigation apps. Our air draft with AIS and VHF antennas down is 9 ft. The lowest bridge gauge was 10 ft. You are expected to lower antennas and there can be drastic fines if you don’t.



Much of the ICW is lined by multi-million dollar homes with boats on lifts which seems to avoid having boats in the water. This is a good thing in that you don't have to slow down from cruising speed for boats in the water. We are always responsible for our wakes and always need to watch out for that. It can be very hard to discern tiny kayaks off to the side. We try to be polite as we can and go to idle speed for everyone as we are visitors here and we want to be thought of as courteous.



We knew we had bad weather approaching with gale force winds so we left in time to be sure to be secured at Coquina Marina in Daytona Beach well prior to the arrival of the front. Our system of using every fourth day as a “weather/ option” day worked out well yet again.

Coquina Marina is a five-star classy resort with beautiful manicured landscaping and Palm trees. The transient fee is $3 per night per foot, but most importantly there is not a minimum footage so we only paid for 25 ft for two nights. This is very uncommon in Florida. We're putting Coquina Marina (still listed as ‘Sea Breeze Marina on Garmin G3 chips) on our five star resort list. Free amenities include 24h security, a beautiful pool, tennis courts, Fitness room, hot tub and a very accommodating dockmaster, Rob, who chose not to charge us the usual $10 fee for 30 amp power, saying we would not use $10 of power on this boat no matter what we turned on… and he's right. The secured laundry room has two commercial quality Speed Queen washers and dryers for only $1.50 a load each…half the usual cost at most marinas in our experience. And an ice machine in the laundry room with unlimited free ice!





A vicious thunderstorm blew through, and the following winds provoked a gale advisory for the local area through the next day today so we had two nights at Coquina marina. Today we walked around town including an exquisite Esplanade park (and dog park) right on the Halifax River. The Flgaler-Lightner museum ($14 for seniors) is interesting. We got in our six-mile walk and saw dozens of motorcycle shops including many Harley-Davidsons,Triumph, Indian, etc etc. We know nothing about motorcycles, but Daytona Beach is very, very big on them!

Today's high was 87° but with 36% humidity and 15 mph breezes with gusts to 42, it felt quite comfortable. We never even turned on the air conditioner.



Although the St John River can be quite wide and rough south of Jacksonville, from Jacksonville to Daytona Beach is certainly a cruise which any C-Dory should be able to navigate in calm to Breezy conditions with ease.



Florida law describes six different types of Manatee Zones for boaters. “Slow Speed/Minimum Wake means a speed limit of about 6 MPH for all practical purposes. There WILL be a test on all six!



Safe Travels, and we hope you enjoy an ALL FLORIDA COASTS cruise someday soon!

John
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Thu May 04, 2023 9:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Titusville, FL to Patrick AFB Manatee Cove Marina…50+ miles

We had the typical 10 to 15 mph winds this time from the west, on our 50 mile trip from Titusville Florida to Patrick Air Force Base Manatee Cove marina. We didn't have to face the slop totally head on until the last 5 miles after Haulover Canal cut. Then we had salt spray all over the Bimini all the way to the back and it was a pretty rough section.

Getting into the Air Force Base Marina requires a 6 Mile detour back North and a 5 foot swing bridge which we didn't mind. 10 lb of ice was $1 a bag, and a long fixed stock slip was only $45. We spent two days here. We made a run to provision at the commissary and picked up a replacement sprayer head at the BX. The Commissary and BX is only 0.8 MI away. We got a Lyft just outside the south gate of Patrick Air Force Base to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Center and enjoyed the center all day. We got more than our 2-hour walk in at that Space Center. What a great time and we are having a hoot!

We faced one of the longest Manatee zones we have ever experienced, requiring about 2 hours of 6 MPH operation.

Patrick Air Force Base had a free pump out, and believe it or not it was actually working at a Federal facility! Overall a great day. A smaller boat would have had a tough time facing the one to two foot white capping slop from the 30 mph West winds for a short five mile distance. Otherwise, any CD could have done it.

John
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Fri May 05, 2023 8:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Patrick Air Force Base to Fort Pierce City Marina, 50+ miles

Another short day along rivers that were mostly with some light chop. For the most part the wind was behind us, making for a much easier loping glide over the chop than if we were facing it head-on. It is truly shocking how wide these rivers are, when they appear so narrow on marine cartography charts!

We enjoyed seeing lots of wildlife, lots of bird sightings, and lots of scenic river views. We like to get secured into our slip soon after noon. We can complete our cruise conversion to Marina Mode within an hour including plug-in and shore power and getting the 15K BTU Coleman RV air conditioner fired up. Surprisingly, 95° weather with 35% humidity and a 10 mph Breeze proved to be quite comfortable in the cockpit as the sun goes down and the temperature starts to drop a little bit. By morning it was only and 62°we were under our fleece blanket. We left the aft cabin door totally open and surprisingly had no bugs at all yet again.





A Cruising tip we’d like to share is learning how to use a handheld VHF radio on channel 16. The FCC limits these radios to 6 watts so you won't accidentally be transmitting your routine overtaking negotiations all the way to Jacksonville. Keep the ship 25 watt VHF radio on channel 13, which by default is always limited to low power, usually within line of sight or less than three miles, which is the only traffic we are interested in. This saves precious time in urgent situations.





Eileen's cruising tip is to use pre-packaged tiny half and half Diner Style non-refrigerated mini cups rather than a quart of refrigerated half and half for our coffee in the morning. This minimizes the number of times the fridge has to be opened just to get half and half for our morning coffee…and the restaurant style non refrigerated vials taste just as good!

I couldn’t get my NeboLink to work and emailed Nebo Global for tech support. In under 24 hours I got a reply that it had no power and to look at that. We spliced in a new connection with 3M microdots and it works again! Get the free Nebo Boat tracking app for your Apple or Android smartphone or tablet at the Apple or Play store. Search for Cat O’ Mine to see where we are on NEBO. You can download our Voyage segments and speeds by requesting Friend status, and also text us without that.

What a great cruise on a great boat with my best friend and wife of 40 years!

Safe Travels!

John
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Avidmagnum12



Joined: 23 Mar 2013
Posts: 679
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 May 06, 2023 9:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi John
I’ve been enjoying following your adventure. The Loop is best done as a marathon and not a sprint…….your doing it right. Keep it up and you’ll set the record for the loop that took the longest time. LOL

_________________
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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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Sun May 07, 2023 8:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Tom,

According to the AGLCA site, the longest Loop on record is 11 years.

Therefore, we are aiming for 12 years, or 2027.

Safe Travels and following seas!

John
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thataway



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
Posts: 20890
City/Region: Pensacola
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: thataway
Photos: Thataway
PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2023 10:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, we did our first section of the Great Loop in 1983--40 years ago. Although we have done over 2/3, alas we will never be able to complete it.

Enjoying Cat O Mine voyage and photos!

_________________
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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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Mon May 08, 2023 7:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fort Pierce City Marina to Lake Park Harbor, Riviera Beach

This leg was by far the smoothest to date.
There was little wind and it was very calm although the rivers are very wide in this area.

Is your VHF radio less than 12 years old? Yes of course it is less than 12 years old. In that case you should perform radio checks using the Rescue 21 DSC system. A description of how to do that is here:

https://mariners.coastguard.blog/2020/10/19/performing-a-vhf-marine-radio-check/

It’s actually painful to me to hear USCG Sector Miami admonishing Florida boaters for 25 miles all around us to not use VHF 16 for radio checks. At the very least, use VHF 09 if you refuse to learn how to use the automated Rescue 21 radio check system.

Lake Worth at Riviera Beach is one of the only zones on the AICW with NO speed limit. 70 foot ocean sport fishers blast down at full throttle and the wake DOES sneak into this L shaped harbor.

Also this is the best place we’ve seen to launch into a Bahamas adventure at the least bother (but not, alas, the least expense). See the thread “Taking your C-Dory to Bimini?” for the gory details and pics. And don’t even think about it until you’ve read all the weather caveats.



The NEBOLINK is incredible for detailed logging including weather! Get it for your Loop (and suspend the $11/mo subscription as needed, it’s easy obvious and on line).

Safe Travels and Following Seas!

John
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Wed May 10, 2023 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

AICW Riviera Beach to Pompano Beach, FL Sands Harbor Marina, 30+ miles at mostly 6 MPH

We have found the Waterway guide print book spiral Edition to be the easiest way to follow along in our travels while doing research and routing. However, the online Waterway Explorer version gives much more information about specific marinas and what is available at each. Get it.
Every landmark, bridge and marina is referenced by it’s AICW Statute Mile. This is an Army Corps of Engineers gig, and they are not very nautical folks. We understand how NM correlate with 60 degrees of arc and makes ocean nav math easier, but we use SM exclusively because all the reference guides do.
We are becoming big fans of Aqua Maps Marine because ONLY that app shows both the statute mile marker where you are with one touch on the ‘recommended route’ screen as well as No Wake zones, which is not tackled at all in any fashion by any other navigational app. Kudos for Aqua Maps for taking the effort!

Waterway guide accurately portrays this leg as having concrete or steel sea walls which accentuate a ricocheting effect of wakes going back and forth long after any vessels have passed. The speed limit is most often Slow Speed, Minimum Wake, which translates for most trailer boats to about 6 to 7 MPH.

This Marina is one of the most competitive we've run into in terms of E90 Rec 90 gas, which is $5.05 per gallon, as opposed to $6.13 per gallon at the last marina. This is all despite the fact that one would think Pompano Beach is a more expensive area overall. We filled up, and with that comes free ice for the duration of our stay!

We have Filet Mignon and Greek salad from Publix on the boat, just like at home.



Credit to Bob Austin for finding how the NuWave induction skillet can cook a steak using only 600 watts. Also for getting a Kill O Watt meter ($16) so you find out EXACTLY what every device devours, making load management much more objectively manageable.

We bagged our cleanest pump out yet, which proves that practice makes perfect. (no pictures although we KNOW you want to see them). Our slip was between two 62 ft yachts, which helped mitigate the constant wake action in this area. At low tide, the dock deck is about 7 ft above our cockpit deck with no ladders. This makes for some interesting contortions for a couple of 68-year-olds.



Floating docks are not an option in this part of the world, We noticed that the pilings are growing huge oyster shells right at the spot where low tide scraped our rub rail rubber insert. That was getting really gouged up. We certainly did not want to risk a repeat of the Infamous Daydream Rub Rail Incident so we hiked to Lowe's to try to find a Helpful Hardware Man. He told us that they would NOT cut a 12 ft section of PVC piping for us to make a shorter section, NO WAY IN HELL (that was very helpful).

So we bought some 2 ft sections and coupled them together with a PVC pipe fitting and hoped for the best.



Everyday we have cut off the air conditioning after the peak heat which is about 85° at 3:00 p.m., and slept with believe it or not the cabin door totally open with NO bugs.

Hillsboro Inlet is famous for rough seas and breaking waves. Boats with over 5 ft draft should never even attempt it. See the U tubes of flipped racing boats. Today is quite benign, and local officials located a dredge so that local boaters would have something to crash into while drinking beer.

Cheers! I run a few days behind depending on wifi since Verizon hot spot is very expensive for uploading photos.

Safe travels and following seas!

John
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Fri May 12, 2023 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pompano Beach, FL to Boca Chica Key to Islamorada, FL, 81 miles

From Pompano Beach to Miami there are many slow/minimum wake 6 mile per hour zones. The water was calm and the high-rise condos and buildings were pretty awesome.











Here we are running with one engine down but OFF and the other at 1,800 RPM. Surprisingly, that is more efficient (3.5 MPG) than running both at 800 RPM (2.5 MPG). My five star Yamaha tech advises running the off engine at idle rather than off to prevent any possible water ingress up the exhaust if we are waked badly.

[img]

[img]http://www.c-brats.com/albums/CAT-O-MINE/P1030178.sized.jpg

There is a 2-mile stretch of what Waterway guide claims is the most challenging navigation on the entire ICW. In this small area there are four bridges. each with a different approach, crossing a ship turning basin, crossing the Everglades Port inlet and crossing numerous security zones around any docked or underway cruise ships.





Fortunately there was almost no other traffic around Ithe ICW and the slow speed makes it easier to make certain of our position. We found it very irritating that many Resume 25 MPH zones are less than ¼ mile long…it takes longer than that to get a TC255 up on plane and the trim dialed in and it wastes gas. Again, only Aqua Maps Marine makes any attempt to show how long a No Wake Zone is on your route.



When you finally get past the southern parts of Miami, Biscayne Bay opens up with no speed limit. The water becomes very beautiful with a green tint and the ability to see grass on the bottom while we are whizzing by at 25 miles per hour. It actually looked like it was less than waist deep, but our depth finder confirmed it was 8 ft on average.

We stopped at Boca Chica Key in order to grab a photo of the boat by the lighthouse for a possible future calendar picture submission, LOL. Overnight fees are $25 at the honor system kiosk. No pets are allowed in any part of Biscayne Bay National Seashore even if they are on the boat!







South of Biscayne bay, the RCW takes advantage of tiny winding creeks through mangroves to get from one body of water to another. This is certainly an area to slow down in.



We had a reservation at Plantation Yacht Harbor Marina Islamorada at Founder`s Park. They have rig storage available as well as Transient slips and easy access to the Bayside. The $40 ramp fee is the highest we’ve ever seen.



The ramp is short with a deep drop-off. The park has a large pool, tennis courts and a mini beach on the bay.



We stayed two nights. Someone put a $2.99 charge on one of Eileen’s credit cards at 0145 that was flagged by Barclay. A new card will be mailed home in 10 days, but that does not help us on this particular cruise. What a time-consuming HASSLE. Something to consider in your travels. Keep more than one credit card, we use a $120 Amazon hotel like safe to stash the Fujinon stabilized binocs, wallets, cash, and most of the loaded weapons.

Safe Travels!

John amd Eileen
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thataway



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
Posts: 20890
City/Region: Pensacola
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: thataway
Photos: Thataway
PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2023 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great photos! I figured you would be lured In by one of those $5 a foot a night in Fort Lauderdale or Miami .

My son (who is in banking security) tells me that the $2.99 charge is a "test" if it goes through, then the next charge is going to be much more. We have come to the point where we only use cash when traveling. There are too many ways that credit cards can be scanned, or stolen by employees and sold.
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Sun May 14, 2023 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Islamorada Founders Park Yacht Harbor to Marathon (Vaca Key), Marlin Bay Resort and Marina, 50 miles, Cruising Day # 22, 520 water miles:

This leg seemed lumpy with one foot cresting waves behind us although Nebo called the weather as only 10 knots East Wind with gusts to 18 mph. However, that is an airport reading and not the weather on the water. We would have said steady 15 MPH Southeast to East Wind with gusts to 22. At any rate it wasn't a bad leg on a well built boat with the wind at our backs.

There was a fair amount of sargassum and other weeds floating around as always. The air sacs tend to keep it above the level of the water intakes on the lower leg of the outboards. However, we did have an overheat alarm on #2 in a particularly nasty little piece of chop on one engine. The digital display showed it was only at 140° when the other was running at the normal 138°. I was a bit surprised that the alarms are set that sensitive. As always we raised the outboard lower legs and some crud and seaweed slid off of the offending motor.

If you are new to boating with outboard motors, you should be aware that the most common engine alarm will be an overheat due to something being wrapped around the lower leg where the water intake grates allow engine cooling water to be sucked up by the water pump. Most often, this is from a Walmart bag being wrapped around the lower leg. Rarely, it's a Sam's Club bag getting wrapped around the lower leg. At any rate, the first thing to think of when you get a engine overheat alarm and you're not sure if the source is to stop, raise the outboard leg, and see what if anything falls off. When you stop, it may slip off before you even see it.

We ran the hot engine at idle and the other engine at 1800 RPMs for a mile or so until everything cooled down and got back to normal. Although there is a lot of grass in the Keys that tends to float at the level of the engine water cooling intake grates, the sargassum seems to tend to float above that due to its air sacs. In any event, all’s well that ends well.

The forecast was for 4 days of wind that exceeds our mutual ‘NO GO’ criteria (predicted wind over 18 MPH sustained OR gusts over 23 MPH OR waves over 2 feet OR any Advisory OR we really, really like where we are).

So we made reservations in Marathon at Marlin Bay Marina Resort. It's a 5 star fabulous place, and highly recommended. The pool and grounds are magnificent with beautiful manicured landscaping. The heated pool is CHILLED in summer…how cool is that? The hot tub, sauna and fitness rooms are all newer and great. The smallest slip is 34 feet and we’re charged for that at $3.75/ft/night. That is very fair compared to the run of the mill Marco Island Marina by a noisy road charging $4.00/ft with a 40 foot minimum!



We once heard Bob say , “Well, you can’t take it with you, and the kids would just squander it.”

We have all learned so much from Bob! (Including, if you both buy a T-shirt at every Marina stop, you won’t have to find a coin laundry as often).








A brand new Race Trac gas station right in front of the resort has three special long lanes for refueling big boats with E0 gas (from both sides for you TC255 owners).

Marathon’s 33rd Street free boat ramp has been converted to a money making enterprise for the city with a $50 launch/retrieve cost plus $20 per day parking (at kiosk) with no overnight parking for the 8 slots available. This has really cut down on the popularity of this ramp. Marathon residents are exempt.









You can likely guess we love sunsets in the Keys!

The winds are forecast to start diminishing today and be 5 MPH tomorrow and the next four days. We plan to run from Marathon over 110 miles in the open Gulf to north Marco Island. This leg and the Northern Gulf Crossing should be taken very seriously by any C-Dory crew. Verify your weather forecast with WINDY as well as NOAA marine. Three HH VHF radios are charged and tested with the ship radio, the EPIRB passed its’ test, the SOLAS Type 1 Offshore PFD’s are ready and pre-fitted, the route double checked on both Navionics and Garmin dual 8212 MFD’s , SM markers verified on AquaMaps Marine, and the Central Gulf USCG SAR station numbers posted at the helm. Shark River in the Everglades (39 miles) is the bailout option and we have our printed Everglades Boater Education Certificates (required). Our fuel onboard is known to be good after 50 miles so we’re not adding any.

A recent change allows some inflatable PFD’s (those with a clear window over the arming mechanism) to be rated Type 2; otherwise you have to be wearing it for it to count. Reading the label is the only way to tell the USCG Type and the rules that go with that.

If you cruise enough, your glasses will go overboard at some point. Always have a spare pair. Zinnioptical.com has frames starting at $4.99. All you need is the numbers off your Optometrist's Rx and Interpupillary distance…all explained online. You don’t mail in your Rx.

Wish us good luck (and good preparation, which Good Luck often Favors).

Safe travels,

John
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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 May 16, 2023 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We think that you really need to see a couple of more sunset pictures from Marlin Bay Marina in Marathon.




We left soon after first light and crossed over 100 miles of the open Gulf of Mexico.
The seas were not as calm as predicted, with sloppy conditions and white capping waves. Our Nebo link cited winds at 10 mph. However, I doubt this is from a marine weather or buoy source as opposed to an airport.

When we finally reached the protection of Cape Sable from the East winds, even though the tallest mangroves are only 60 ft tall. That did help a lot in protecting us from the slop. We never had salt water hitting the back of the Bimini or even the windshield.

However, we would be a bit reluctant to try this particular trick on a C-Dory 22. YMMV.

Navigating the Everglades is basically weaving in and out of Mangrove forests. We stopped at Colusa Island Safe Harbor Marina because we are very familiar with it. They are renovating docks as well as the bath house and have a temporary tiny trailer shower /bath facility That was cute but incredibly tight. another experience to chalk up!

Here are some more photos to give you an idea of what it's like to be navigating around and through the mangrove mazes in the Everglades and the 10,000 islands.

Now, you can feel good going 40 MPH through all this.















This kind of helpful informationThis kind








[img]http://www.c-brats.com/albums/CAT-O-MINE/P1030[/img]

On part of the Big Marco river, you leave red ATONS to Port rather than starboard. This kind of helpful information is always included in the Waterway guide, which we highly recommend. Otherwise, your C-Dory may be in ankle deep water.

Safe Travels!

John
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CharlieRock



Joined: 13 Jan 2017
Posts: 18
City/Region: Celebration
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2006
C-Dory Model: 23 Venture
Vessel Name: Charlie Rock
Photos: Charlie Rock
PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2023 5:04 pm    Post subject: Your PVC Fender Bars? Reply with quote

John and Eileen, I'm replicating your PVC fender bars for use in the Canaveral area, where all my friends docks are fixed and oyster shell hazards! (comfy dory II excluded). How is the multi part fender bar working? Even with stopper locks, i experienced some flex in the PVC from boat pressure. Would you recommend a Solid piece 6-8 feet long vs multiple sections of 2ft with couplers? Safe travels up the West side! The Marriott on Anna Maria island has an integrated hotel and marina, in the event either of you is looking for a night off the V-berth.
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Tim Fahy
Home Port Celebration Florida
C Co. 1/187th AARCT
Charlie Rock (former Noro Lim/Journey) 2006 CC23
Charlie Rock 2017 Ranger Tug R23 2017-2020
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 992
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: Wed May 17, 2023 7:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Tim,

As you know, on a boat it's always an equation of storage size versus effectiveness versus cost. We want something that can be stored in the gunnel inserts, which are about 4 ft long. Three or four feet seems to be the maximum effective length for a 1.5 in PVC pipe system before it bends too much or breaks.

I would advocate using a smaller PVC fender against a SINGLE piling, with two fenders inboard of them and no more than about 4 ft of length per piling. One would think that fenders hung sideways against the piling would be effective, but not in our experience with the rolling that they do. You only need a PVC pipe fender board against a front and rear piling, since they will keep the rub rails off any pilings in the middle of the boat.

I don't usually carry a drill on board, but I believe that drilling two holes for the line through the ends of the PVC pipe would be much more effective than running a line through them, which I had to do. The dry fit coupling system between 2 ft lengths of PVC tends to fail with really heavy rocking, however the lines through them (since I don’t have a drill) tends to still somewhat protect against the piling. I plan on epoxying the coupler and cutting a few inches off of each pipe so I can store it in the cockpit. We have floating docks at our home marina.

Hope something here turns out to be useful to you.

John
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