Monday, April 15, 2013

How to start...

This has been a most eventful couple weeks since we left Saint Petersburg and pictures seen to center around sunsets, usually when we get into port.

Our first couple of days were spent in Point Desoto, the first anchorage up the Manatee River.  There we decompressed and transitioned Horizon from a dockside home to a cruiser.  When the weather front passed we headed off to our first port outside Tampa Bay: Charlotte Harbor, a destination about 50 miles south.  We had a great 11 hours downwind sailing and riding the swells that had built up from the prior front.  But when we turned to make the 2 mile channel into Charlotte, of course those same swells were now abeam.  With the brisk wind and seas breaking around us, we were really happy to hunker down in the lee just inside the entrance at Boca Grande.  Until the wind turned at 2am...

The next morning we motored to Punta Gorda up at the top of the bay.  The first evening we were met by Robert and Susan from SuzieQ.  They had moved from our dock about 6 months ago and it was really good to see them again. We had drinks at the Tiki Hut then a really good Mexican dinner on the other side of the bridge.  They even drove us to the grocery to pick up missed essentials :)  Over the next days we did get to do some walking around the town and shopping.  They have done a wonderful job reconstructing since Hurricane Charlie swept through in 2004.

In all we sent 3 days in Punta Gorda then headed out again.  Another 10 hour day brought us to Fort Myers Beach where we picked up a mooring ball.  Everything is very close together there which is great for cruisers, bars, groceries, laundry, bars, restaurants, live music, bars, shops.  We hooked up with family a couple times, it is always good to see familiar faces.  One of the best bars we found is Bonita Bill's Waterfront Cafe just under the bridge on the mainland side of the channel.  It is open air but they have good food at cruiser friendly prices and they almost always have live music.  The tables and dinghy dock are seldom empty.
Fort Myers Beach Bridge
Bonita Bill's Waterfront Cafe

Cate line dancing at Bonita Bill's

Live trip map!

While in Fort Myers I asked an ex-work mate and sailing cohort Chris for help getting our SPOT Messenger Check-in messages onto a permanent map.  He first tried to set up a web interface to EveryTrail but then he found SpotWalla and helped get us set up our live trip map.

We are now anchored at Marcos Island.  Weather looks pretty good to leave on this afternoon's high tide for an 85 mile sail to Marathon.

In case you are wondering, we are still using our phones for all internet, email and online activities.

No comments:

Post a Comment