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Thursday, December 5, 2013

Foggy, Froggy Start Southbound

live aboard
Despite Wayne's persistent housekeeping, the spiders rebuilt
Frosty beauty aside, thanks to their poor timing,
a Viking funeral was in order.
We awoke to a clear blue sky our last morning at Ortega Landing Marina.  But Mother Nature decided a more challenging start was in order, and ushered in the fog. 

Still, we were ready, and rarin' to get going South before Jacksonville's railroad bridge shut off passing boat traffic for 10 days.

Tina (aka mast monkey extraordinaire) saw us off, as did our friendly marina neighbor Daniel from SprayCat.  Many of our other marina friends preceded us South already.  We're looking forward to reconnoitering!
cruising down the intracoastal icw
Not much in the way of landmarks in the fog.


Our daily goal was to reach St. Augustine, some 53 miles away -- a bit of a push at our typical 4-6 knot pace with dusk descending by 5:30 pm.  It required perfect bridge timing and cooperative tides and currents.  Ultimately, the currents prompted our ending day one less than halfway, pulling in at Sister's Creek for a safe overnight anchorage.

Our second mishap was the discovery that it's wise to do a bit more prep and test-driving of our dinghy's outboard between cruising.  More on that in a future post.
fog and cruising
Didn't look like much; we were within
~ 1/4 mile of Jacksonville's railroad bridge.



cranes along st johns river icw
Cranes at Jacksonville's industrial port.
Still, we arrived at a safe destination in one piece, with a minimum of fuss and muss.  All in all, not a bad start.   

That night, at long last, we swung free, secure in anchorage, enjoying our privacy as we watched Venus begin its bright early eve arc into the sky.
anchorage at sunset on icw st john's river
Sunset from our anchorage at Sister's Creek Jacksonville.
cruising and waiting for bridge lift
Ahhh... that's the opening we needed to get to the other side!

cruising st johns river icw
Sister's Creek Bridge; we waited 1/2 hour
for bridge maintenance equipment to
move and the bridge to lift so we
could anchor on the other side.
grits and ham
Grits with ham & Louisiana hot sauce;
apropos Southern passage food.