Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Bye Bye Carrabelle

Finally the time came when the weather and the experts said Sunday is the time to cross the Gulf of Mexico.  With our fingers crossed all seven boats waiting to go over were excited of the thoughts we would be 170 miles from here to the Western shores of Florida.  We had been in Carrabelle for twelve days now and have met many fellow loopers, some of them almost done with their loop.  We all met the night before and had a pot luck with chili, corn bread, salads, and adult beverages.  After going to bed I couldn't sleep with the thoughts of all the scenarios of the next day.  We met in the morning for coffee and it was still looking good and everything was a go. Four boats were going to leave at 10;00am and I decided to leave at 12:00pm.  The other two boats were at a different marina and one of them was a sail boat that left real early, because of speed, and the other boat was a trawler with a couple, Ross and Barb, from Michigan, we met when we were in Seabrook Texas who were going over with us.  At 12:00 we were on our way.  It was a beautiful day and we all had high expectations of calm seas.  We started out at about 7 knots and had about 2 foot waves but the swells were hitting us from the beam at about three to four feet giving us a rock and roll affect. To Jan and I we thought it was right up there with some of the other conditions we have encountered since leaving San Francisco which means it was uncomfortable.  For Chloe it was another "Chloe weather advisory", in which drugs were evolved, she also had to keep her paws crossed because she had to wait 23 hours. Speaking of 23 hours, it was a real challenge of endurance and continuous conversation to keep us awake.  Crossing the Gulf of Mexico from Carrabelle to Tarpon Springs is the hardest part of the great loop and one of the things you need to do is to make sure you are at least 15 to 20 miles off the coast of your destination in day light because of the crab pots that are everywhere.  With our coarse heading and time of arrival to cross the crab pot area we were too early of an arrival and had to slow our speed to 6 knots and go further South before turning in so we would be able to see the crab pots.  As daylight broke we were greeted with, non other than FOG!  Really!  Thankfully we made it thru and tied up at Turtle Cove Marina at 11:30am Monday.  YEAH!!!!!!

 Bye Bye Carrabelle

Great staff at The Moorings Marina
Dog Island, an outer barrier island from Carrabelle
Sunset on the Gulf

Sunrise on the Gulf before the fog

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