Weather

Well it’s summer, to and this is when storms hit this area of the world.

The answer to your question is, YES, we are watching the development of Potential Tropical Storm 5 closely. Still a little too early to make a decision on this today. Will have more information tomorrow.

https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/refresh/graphics_at5+shtml/025646.shtml?cone#contents

Falcon 9 launch

We caught today’s SpaceX Falcon 9 launch, I can now knock a rocket launch off of my bucket list.

After topping off the tanks in Titusville, we headed out to Port Canaveral. Since we were in the narrow Intra Coastal Waterway we spent the day motoring. Everyone got a chance to man the helm today.

Ran into a little issue with the transmission while waiting for a drawbridge on the Canaveral Barge Canal to open. We expect to have someone look at it in the morning. This will probably push us back a half day.

All my bags are packed and I’m ready to go

It’s time to start the next Sail Ripple adventure! This time I’m crewing on a vessel delivery from Titusville, on the east coast of Florida, around the Keys, then across the Gulf of Mexico to Kemah, TX on Galveston Bay. I’m flying out of Houston tomorrow so that my vehicle will be near our intended destination.

Sun Suite is a 1995-ish Beneteau Oceanis 40, she has had a recent survey and the engine has been thoroughly inspected for the trip.


Our tentative itinerary is roughly listed below, the final decision is in the hands of the Captain:

Wednesday, June 30 – Board Sun Suite and cast off the lines.

Head south close (1-2 miles offshore) to the eastern Florida coastline to stay out of the northbound Gulf Stream current.

Friday-Saturday, July 2-3ish – Port call in the Keys (Key Largo, Key West, or Dry Tortugas), top off tanks, and reprovision as needed. Cast off the lines again for the Gulf crossing.

Sail

Sail

Avoid oil rigs

Sail

Thursday-Sunday, July 8-10 – Arrive Waterford Harbor Yacht Club, Kemah, Galveston, Texas.

Yes, we will be sailing 24 hours a day, 1 or 2 people will be on watch at all times. I’m thinking 1 person during the daylight hours, and 2 people in overnight watches.

We will be keeping a close eye on the weather before our departure and during our journey.

I’ll post our satellite tracking link as soon as I receive it.

Gulf of Mexico crossing

It’s time to get ready for this trip. I’m trying to fit everything that I’ll need for an open water trip into one bag, life preserver/harness, foul weather gear, safety equipment, lights, clothes, bedding…

We’re still watching the weather closely. There’s now a disturbance off of the coast of Africa that could become an issue in 7-10 days. The earlier and closer disturbance has degenerated into a trough and should no longer be a concern.

Here’s the NOAA Atlantic 5-Day Graphical Tropical Weather Outlook if you want to keep an eye on the weather.

More sailing please!!!

Projected route – Titusville, FL > Kemah, TX
Gulf of Mexico currents

Apparently I didn’t get enough sailing while I was in the BVI the last two weeks, so I have signed on as a crew for a sailboat delivery from Titusville on the East coast of Florida to Kemah on Galveston Bay, Texas.

If my calculations are correct, our course should be around 1400nm (nautical miles = 1.15 regular miles) and at 7.5kts this should take us about 7 days of sailing to complete the journey. It should be tight quarters on a Beneteau Oceanis 40 from the mid 1990’s.

Hopefully, we’ll be departing Titusville on June 30 and arriving in Kemah somewhere around the 6th to the 8th of July.

Living my dream – Gone sailing, will return whenever…

Sunny and Windy

Lambert Bay

Now that we are on our way back to the yacht basin, we FINALLY got some perfect BVI sailing weather, clear skies, bright sun, and strong 15-20kt winds. We made the most of it and set the sails for a couple of hours of wonderful sailing in before returning to Road Town. After distributing our leftover alcohol, we made good use of the Moorings/Sunsail facilities in Wickham’s Cay.

An exciting cab ride across the island brought us to Lambert Bay where we splurged for a restful night at the Wyndham Tortola.

The Indians, and a night dive at the Sandy Ledges

Basket Starfish

We headed across the channel back to the Indians once again. This time I was lucky to come across several Basket Starfish closed up for the day during our dive around the Indians. Lots of great sea life and a fun little swim through!

After the dive we went out for a sail, then over to Privateer Bay where we were the ONLY vessel in the bay. Quite the treat for our last night on the water. As the sun set, we hopped in the water for a night dive. All kinds of fun, we found a rather large octopus roaming around the rocks on the side of the ledge. Near the end of the dive, we played with several little shrimp, then turned off the lights to enjoy the bioluminescence. Once directly under the boat, we laid on our backs on the bottom and watched the tarpon circling our underwater light on the boat. It was really cool to lay back and watch them feeding, and knowing that we would have to swim directly through them to get back on board Bliss Point.

Lobster Omelets, the Soggy Dollar, and Sandy Spit

Sandy Spit

Once again, the Tipsy Shark cooked us a fantastic meal, we had lobster omelets for breakfast, what a treat! Since some of you wonderful people purchased drinks for us via the Soggy Dollar Drink Board, we headed over to the Soggy Dollar for some morning drinking.

We left Jost Van Dyke shortly after noon and headed over to Sandy Spit, a tiny little island that is barely more than 3′ above sea level. After playing around there for a bit, we headed back into the Sir Francis Drake channel and grabbed a slip at Nanny Cay.

Scrub Island, Coral Garden and Jost Van Dyke

Basket Starfish at Scrub Island

Taking advantage of the facilities at Scrub Island we took the shuttle over to the beach at North Bay. It was magnificent, we had the whole beach all to ourselves,

We left Scrub Island shortly after noon and headed over to Great Dog for a very pleasant dive and snorkel around the Coral Garden. We picked up the wrong mooring ball to find the shark planes but enjoyed a wonderful dive nonetheless.

After threading our way through a heavy rainstorm, we arrived at Jost Van Dyke a little to late to make it to the Soggy Dollar so we stayed in the Great Harbor. The Tipsy Shark provided the best meal that any of us have had in years. The king fish was fresh and cooked to perfection, and the presentation was impeccable.

We finished the evening off with some drinks at Foxy’s where the girls were able to cut the rug with Foxy himself.