Sunday, December 5, 2010

Vero Beach, FL

Friday, December 3
Distance Traveled 40.6 nm
Total Distance:  1758.43 nm
Passage to Titusville, FL

We woke at 6am this morning and for once I was the first one to get up and dressed.  It was breezy outside and the kerosene lantern was lit all night so despite it being 46F outside, it was 60F inside.  We had a lot of condensation inside and I wiped the moisture off the forehatch.  Last night I had a couple of cold drips fall on my face and wake me up. Not pleasant! We raised the anchor at 650am to Winds NW 8-10K.  During my watch that started at 915am, we passed many fishing camps along the ICW.  There are many RV's there and docks along the ICW for people to stand and fish.    They seem to be popular in this section.  Phil let out the head sail at 1114am but that didn't last long as he rolled it up again at 1218pm.  Everything went smoothly until we came up to the Nasa RR Bridge.  There was construction going on and a path through that was just wide enough for Changes to fit, but we weren't sure if it was ok to pass or not.  Phil tried to hail the workers a few times on the radio to no response.  I hailed them shortly before we were going through and finally got the go ahead that it was safe to pass.

It wasn't too much later that we came to Titusville, FL where we were going to stop for the night and see my parents.  We saw S/V Bikini Club and they said there was plenty of room to their port to anchor, but the depth there was too shallow for us so we went a little further out.  The winds were still from the NW and after we anchored at 155pm Phil started to get the dinghy ready for us to board to go to the Titusville Municipal Marina.  It was pretty wavy and bouncy because of the long fetch and the winds so we made the decision that we would get a dock at the Marina.  Turns out they only had a dock on the starboard side that was in the sheltered part of marina, so we took it though our boarding ladder is on port.  We were coming up to the dock, and then I saw that a dinghy was tied in the way.  The dock hand then went to move the dinghy as we came into the dock.  Let me tell you that it was pretty hairy with the wind pushing us into the boat on our port side as the man couldn't get our starboard bow line because he was fussy with the dinghy.  Katie and I both got on the deck and used our legs to push Changes off the boat.  It wasn't too much later that we had her docked safe and sound, but could have done without that excitement. 

As it had been a couple days without showers, I talked to my parents and they didn't mind waiting for us to take a shower while they waited in the car.  So after about an hour after docking, we met up with them and with out to an Italian Restaurant for supper.  The food was great and it was also good to see my parents again before they leave on a cruise ship to the Bahamas and points south for a week.  We got back about 630-7pm and got a call from Ken and Jeanne from Sail Away.  Turns out they were in Westland Marine Boat yard next door and were invited over to visit.  We played Canasta and the guys won BOTH games.  Ugh!  They are going to keep their boat there for a month to have the dodger built and go back home for Christmas.  Jeanne will go back to work and Ken will come back to sail over to the Bahamas early Jan 2011.  We hope to see them again in the future!  Will miss them as we've had some great times with them on this trip.  We got back late after midnight, but haven't' decided if we'll stay a couple days or move on yet so can sleep in.

Saturday, December 4
Distance Traveled:  18.91nm
Total Distance:  1777.34 nm
Passage to Cocoa, FL

We woke at 8am and after discussion, decided that we were going to continue further south today after listening to the weather forecast.  We called Jeanne on the radio and said our goodbyes and well wishes.  We plan to go to Cocoa, FL and then have a long day getting to Velcrow  - excuse Vero Beach.  I would like to make an triangular shaped cushion to support our backs more when sitting on the settee and am on the lookout for some foam.  A-marine said they'd have to glue foam together and their quoted price was too much.  May check out a Walmart or see if a fabric store has the foam I want.  We filled up the water tank and left the dock at 1005am.  Winds are NW 6 knots and it's 66F.  The winds clocked to the East about 1115 am and brought cooler air with them.  We dropped anchor at 130pm and decided to go into town.  They had a street fair so we walked around but didn't buy anything except a couple fish sandwiches and a short plunger for the head toilet at a great hardware store.  They really had the large tools.  They had a Hancock Fabric store in town, but it was too late to catch a bus.  While we were at the dinghy dock, a woman started talking to us having recognize our boat from being in St. Marys, GA.  So we met Chris of S/V Sisu (See Sue), a Whitby 42' (same boat that Dave and Deanna Hoops had when they were cruising).  We had a nice chat and then decided to take the dinghy to see what their boat looked like.  We said hi to Andy, her husband, and were invited aboard.  They are cruising this year with their 3 children, Rachel, 16yo, Jack, 14, and Eli.8yo.  They were very friendly and have a nice boat that Andy fixed up last year at their home in Maine.  It continues to be a work in progress especially after their boat was hit with lightening and they lost all their electronics.  They are planning on leaving early tomorrow morning to go to Vero Beach as are we, so hope to see them again.

I fixed the mixed rice and grains with veggies in the pressure cooker this time adding the hot smoked sausage for supper.  It turned out good and we had just enough leftovers for 2 people this time.  I got tired again and went to be about 9pm.  I didn't hear Phil come to bed.

Sunday, December 5
Distance Traveled:  46.8 nm
Total Distance:  824.14 nm
Passage to Vero Beach

I had set the alarm to go off at 6am but either it didn't go off or I couldn't hear it with my ear plugs and Phil woke me at 641am.  He'll have to make coffee while we're underway today as we need to get a early start to make it to Vero Beach before supper.  Phil started the engine at 704am and we raised the anchor at 705am with Lorraine at the helm.  Phil made his coffee and took the helm at 730am.  It was 54F outside, which is warmer than it's been the past couple days.  It's sunny with winds S 8-9 knots.  Once we're in the ICW, we have 2 sailboats behind us.  Phil had to put 2 jerry jugs of diesel in the tank and then by 827am he let the head sail out, but reefed as it was blowing pretty hard (gust over 20 knots) as we were going downwind and didn't want to heel the boat too much.  By 855am he let it all out and we were motor sailing with the engine on idle at 5.5 - 6.5 knots.  We considered putting up the main sail and sailing- but then decided it was too much work and we wanted to make sure we got to Vero Beach in plenty of time.  As it was cloudy, the winds picked up to 15-21 knots and clocked to the West.  It's been a while since Changes was heeled over.  By 11am it was 68F outside and a black bank of clouds were behind us and coming closer.  Phil took over his watch and it started to rain at 1120am.  Thankfully it lasted only 30 min and by 110pm when Lorraine had her watch, it was sunny and 69F with winds W10knots.  Katie took the helm at 145pm and had lots of curves to practice steering with the markers and the GPS chart plotter course.  When Phil took the helm at 250pm it was 74F and winds were W 10-11 knots.  We picked up mooring ball 10 at 305pm in Vero Municipal Marina next to S/V Sisu and Haven on our port side.  The water is only 5.7ft deep here, but we aren't touching.  We found the dinghy dock and Katie decided she wanted to take a walk, so Phil and I took a trip around the anchorage.  We saw some boats that we've seen before and stopped to say high to Karen and Ed of S/V Passages.  They were docked behind us at the marina in St. Marys, GA.  They are planning to stay the week here waiting for the weather window for them to cross to the Bahamas.  They're planning on going out the Fort Pierce Inlet and cross over to Great Sale Cay on the Abaco Banks - a 22 hour trip for them.  We picked up Katie and came back to the boat as the sun was setting. I made beef stew for supper and then we've been reading and on the computer since.

Phil and I have talked about where we want to go.  Our plan is to stay here tonight and tomorrow night and get errands done tomorrow during the day.  Katie has agreed to wash the clothes here at the marina.  We plan to go to Lake Worth on Tuesday and maybe stay in Palm Beach area Wednesday if Katie's Dad wants to visit with her.  We'll go to Fort Lauderdale on Thursday and to Key Biscayne on Friday so that when the next weather window comes (hopefully Sunday) we'll be ready to leave. 

I have some photos to post but will have to do that another time.  The weather is to get cold - nothing like they are having in Chardon where they have a Lake Effect snow warning, but it will be in the 30's at night for the next couple nights.  Brrrrr!  Will have to make some bread tomorrow to warm up the cabin and make an extra loaf to take to happy hour on Passages.

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