Wednesday, December 5, 2007

East bound on the Gulf Intra Coastal Water Way

Hello all-
Today we made good progress on this part of the Great Loop. We left Dog River early in the morning. The first leg of today's journey went 35 miles from Dog River, on the middle left (west) shore of Mobile Bay to the bottom right (south and east) corner of Mobile Bay, where we officially joined the Gulf Intra Coastal Waterway. The Winnie W. steamed another 30 miles before anchoring just short of Pensacola.

This photo shows the Pensacola lighthouse, looking from the eastern most end of Perdido Key. You can see the intracoastal waterway in between; the sign at right is a warning against making excessive wake.

The second photo is Winnie W. in tonight's secure anchorage, sheltered behind high dunes in a little tidal pocket. We have had the Blue Angels (link) flying over, and also a few trainers plus other aircraft that may be military. Since nightfall it has been quiet.

The Gulf Intra Coastal Waterway zig-zags thru a series of lagoons & bayous that are separated from the open water by a thin line of sand dunes... often heavily developed, high-rise condos & resorts flourish... but it's a pleasant route. Tides are irregular but slight; today had a single tide rise & fall (some days have three) of 1 1/2 feet (about 0.4 meters). There are plenty of anchorages and the sand is both good holding ground and makes nice beaches to walk.

Speaking of which, here is the crew enjoying a fine evening walk. The Winnie W. is in the upper background, a little hard to see in this light (believe it or not, the sun was setting as this photo was taken). Thanks to Sue H for this keeper of a shot! The crew also found our first sea shells of this voyage, but decided that with limited storage aboard, we'd leave them for another discoverer.

Hope you all are well & happy- Doug & Kathie (and Hank)


Wayne B said...

Congratulations and welcome to warm, sunny Florida! It keeps getting better as you cruise further south. We arrived back home in Cape Coral last Saturday after our own 4,000 mile, 5 month odyssey this year. The newly rebuilt port side engine and starboard transmission are both performing well thanks to the good work of the Detroit Diesel mechanics in Wanchese, NC. With the exception of a stormy night offshore south of Beaufort, we had a smooth trip back.

We're looking forward to seeing you as you get near the Ft Myers area, and can help out with ground transportation and local knowledge if you'd like.


Wayne and Diane

Team Brazo said...

Sounds like fun -- much better than the 12 inches of snow that we have!!


Winnie W. said...

Hello Team Brazo and Wayne: Great to hear from you! Comments from the snowy north and warm south.
For the North: We are hoping to return to your waters and next time make it to Green Bay; we'll look forward to seeing the other Brazo, your Sundowner (you have such good taste...).
For the South: Thanks for the warm welcome and we look forward to seeing you! We're only a few days on the Panhandle and a weather window away...
Best wishes for the holiday season- Kathie and Doug

Anonymous said...

Hi Guys -

Never been that way before, but just curious, how much open Gulf water do you have to cross and do you do this in some massive straight line or do you marina-hop, and what's the start-finish of the leg? The other blogs I read - it seems like one long straight line. Seems like way longer than Oriental to Ocracoke.


Ben M.

Anonymous said...

How is the engine temperature doing after the thermostat and back flush?

Did anything come out of the lines when you backed flushed?

Did you get work yet?

Three Sheets