Sunrise day one
If you have been following along you may remember the crossing to the Dry Tortuas, that long very tiring day from Bahia Honda. That trip was a total of about 115-120 miles. As I left the anchorage today I was on the beginning of a 180 nautical mile journey! Cutting across turns a 6-7 day journey into just 2 days, LONG DAYS! For a novice sailor like me this is a little intimidating. There is no "buddy boat" this time, Wee Happy is trying to get to the Bahamas
View Tampa to Appalachacola in a larger map
Google maps says the voyage is 197.99 miles.
I tried so hard last night to stay in the narrow channel I must have forgotten today! Reverse! Okay that one wasn't too bad. If you focus for 30 seconds on something else, like a chart, you may be aground here! Once I was though Terre Verde Bridge (last bridge) and Pass-A-Grille channel I raised the sails! The wind was good and at this rate I would be there by sunset tomorrow! After a couple of hours I checked the location on the charts, all is good! For the first few hours I saw other sailboats and fishing boats, all 5 or six of them. On the next reference check it seemed that even though the boat was pointed in the right direction it was sidestepping the course and for the last hour I had only gone due west not northwest! The wind was also getting light so it was time to use the motor for a while. Did I mention I had to arrive before the storm or I would be faced with Force 6 winds and seas Monday night. Eventually the winds died down to almost nothing and the seas began to calm. Looked like I would be motoring for a long time!
Before we parted ways, one thing I told Lala and Kristopher I had not seen,....
...I still had not seen the dolphins run the bow of the boat. Tonight, about an hour before sunset, I got that experience. They were not the typical bottle nose but spotted dolphins. They hung out for about 30 minutes.
Sunset day one. The last boat I saw was several hours ago.
all is good